I'm a Better Dad Than Him. . .

But At Least It Is Easier to Spell Doctor and Lawyer

A friend on my twitter posted a link that lead me to this video on the TED website. TED (from what I could gather on their About page) is a non profit organization that is devoted to fostering innovative and fresh ideas among those in fields like entertainment, technology or design. This video is a tad shy of 20 minutes, which means it will take almost a quarter of your valuable hour, but I do think it is something worth watching.

I don't want to say too much about this video, since I'd like everyone to form their own thoughts on it (plus the more time you spend reading, the less likely you'll be willing to watch the video). I don't necessarily agree with everything brought up in this video, but I do believe there is some value in the message. I think the risk of completely following his message is that not all kids are going to thrive in this type of environment or method of raising (he doesn't insinuate that all will). It also seems a little more money driven than I'd like, but I do agree it is important that a child should understand the value of being able to mange their own funds. I also don't agree completely with his notion that having a 'regular' job is a bad thing (or even that an allowance is bad), because even if my kid becomes a successful entrepreneur, I want him to appreciate and understand what it is like to be a 'labourer'. If you've been an employee, I believe it makes you a little more empathetic to others in that spot, especially if you end up being their boss.

All in all, I definitely think this is a worthwhile video for any parent or 'some day to be' parent to check out. I am a big supporter of the notion of 'teaching my kid to fish' rather than 'give them a fish.' I really oppose parent strategies that overly shelter a child and don't allow them to make some decisions and give them the chance to make mistakes (of course, within a fairly safe and nurturing environment). In what would be no surprise to anyone, I definitely like the idea of encouraging my kids to come up with their own stories and attempt to foster their creativity. The best part of this video, is the idea of embracing, encouraging and investing in the strengths of your child, because I think we often concentrate on trying to improve what our kids are weak at rather than trying to allow the child to flourish in what they are good at. It is likely their strengths are what they enjoy thus are more likely to succeed in, thus will probably be along the lines of what they want to do their whole life. In the end, isn't the goal to have your child succeed and be happy?

Anyway, I've already typed way too much, and will probably save more in-depth thoughts for a future post. Check out the video and tell me what you think.