This is part of a series called “Flip-Flop” – explained here.
Tim Ferriss and his interviewees continue to mess up all of my plans and ways of thinking. So frustrating and liberating at the same time lol!
I was listening to his interview with Ricardo Semler, who – despite his fame and fortune as a successful entrepreneur – does NOT involve his kids in his business.
He never talks about work with them, he never brings them to meetings, and he does not plan on letting them take his company over in the future.
I used to think that involving my kids in my business was good for them. I thought that it would inspire them to work hard; that it would be a way to show how important passion is; and that they could learn a few skills from their papa.
But I am changing my mind on how to share all of this in a healthier way, and that my current methods may be damaging them.
One of the worst things that a parent can do is force their own agenda on their kids. Sometimes – if they were successful in their field, admire a particular career, or regret not having a certain profession…they can unintentionally try and fit their kid into either one of those molds, and that’s a terrible mistake with long-term – if not permanent – consequences.
It disrespects their child’s individuality, doesn’t allow them to discover themselves on their own, and creates resentment and lost time.
I want to tell my story so that it inspires them, show them how excited I am to have found my purpose, and allow them to help out now and then if they are curious; but I need to remind them that this is me and that true success is finding who they are.
I’m still trying to figure out how to do this optimally, but my message is this: that God made each of us unique – our physical makeup, our talents and abilities, our experiences, and most importantly – our purpose. We as parents can inspire, build boundaries, and point them in the right direction – but I must do so with their separate path’s interests in mind.
The above picture is from an event my kids participated in, where Christine, their biological dad, and I helped them build their own cardboard boat to race with in a fun competition with other kids. I caught myself at times trying to make my kid build the boat a certain way; and as soon as I realized that, and let go – I was able to enjoy following his lead, and these designs are what they came out with. Unique – just like them =)