Ep. #20 Three important life lessons I was taught too late as a kid.

Ep. #20 Three important life lessons I was taught too late as a kid.

What does raising kids imply? Providing a roof over the kids, food on the table and an education that can empower them to become independent in the future. 

This definition of raising kids was fine and even perfect until the late 2000s. All 90s kids would agree that this is the way we were raised and we turned out great, I’d say kickass. 

But after having turned into parents, this same methodology doesn’t seem to work. Was the plan at fault? No, but the times have changed now. The level of care and love, the extent of affection and intrusion into the space of a child that was enough and acceptable in the past now seems overwhelming to our kids. 

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I realized parenting isn’t what it was during the good old days. It was definitely easy back then. There weren’t any paedophiles lurking in the form of teachers at school, ice cream sellers actually sold ice-cream and not drugs, video games were fun and kids didn’t end up doing suicide for the sake of it.

Here’s parenting in a nutshell for the modern new-age couples. 

1- Sense of entitlement 

Previously kids were thankful to their parents for providing a roof over their head, for funding their college and helping them establish themselves in the fast life. 

Research suggests kids nowadays have a deep-seated sense of entitlement. They feel that parents provide for them because they are supposed to. This in turn leads to an ungrateful attitude towards any and everything the parents do. And mind you providing for a family in today’s times is no easy task. The economic crises that the world is struck with only seems to rise at an exponential rate. The worse affected are the middle and lower class people who struggle to make ends meet. 

Now imagine you work so hard to give your kids a life that’s better than what you had, but your actions are met with statements like “it’s your job dad, you’re supposed to provide for me”. 

Another weed that is the result of this sentiment of entitlement is being dissatisfied with what you have. It’s all a vicious cycle that needs to be cut at the roots. 

Here’s how you can save your children from this grim situation. Start by living a minimalist life. Kids don’t know about all the bounties of this world. They are happy even if they are given one single toy. In fact, studies have suggested that kids who have fewer toys turn out to be more creative. Also, they learn to value things better. 

Next thing you could do is practise gratitude at home. Kids are great imitators. So starting with a little prayer time either during meals, as soon as the child gets up or during bedtime will do wonders. Initially thank God for each thing provided to you. And after a few days of doing it ask your children what they are thankful for. Include them in your prayers and turn it into a family thing. By this way, you can avoid the sense of entitlement set in your child’s life and help him value things. 

Besides entitlement that are are other common behavioral issues that need to be addressed too. like disciplining your child, kids lying in your face, meltdowns and anger outbursts in kids.

2. Education is important but it’s not everything. 

Growing up I often felt that the main aim of my parents was to help me stand on my feet. As if all their efforts were concentrated on this one task. We are taught that possessing a successful degree will help us achieve financial independence in life. 

Nothing wrong with that but in a bid to succeed we completely forget the most important part of life. We need to like what we do. I am sure many agree with me when I say, not all of us get an option of pursuing career options we like. Corporate jobs pay well, being a doctor, engineer or having a master’s degree provided you with a fixed monthly income. 

3 important life lessons for raising kids

Many startup business ideas have perished in coffee shops or during living room conversations with parents. That’s because they are perceived as unconventional career choices. 

What I would want to do with my kids is to assert the importance of financial independence in their lives but at the same time, I would also encourage them to chase their dreams. Regrets are worse to live with. 

What can be done differently here is, doing smart work. Get a degree along with doing what you like. If you want to be a singer or be a businesswoman then learn the deets of it don’t just wing it. Be serious about it. 

Do let me know how you intend to emphasize the importance of doing what you like and not just building a career in your child’s life. 

3. Time is an indispensable commodity that needs to be valued. 

We have all heard this almost a million times in our life.  Maybe the reason we failed to understand its importance and imply it has been the way in which we were taught about it. 

Kids will not listen when we tell them

“You shouldn’t waste time” 

But they will follow suit when they see their dad being punctual to his work. When mum turns up well in time to pick kids from school.

What is time well spent?

The answer to this question will vary from person to person. What is it to you? For me time well spent is with my dearest ones, my kids, family and friends. It is the moments spent in hard work for my personal and spiritual growth. It’s the time spent in accomplishing my tasks of the day and then in the night when I lay back and check my task list, I derive ultimate pleasure from seeing all the green ticks. 

life lessons for parents

If I value these things in life, then alone my kids will learn to value time. The teachings of parents, the principles for raising kids remain the same over the years. What needs to change is the way we implement, explain and imbibe them in our kid’s lives. 

What are a few life lessons you wished you were taught earlier by your parents? 


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This Post Has 29 Comments

  1. Alpana Deo

    I second your thoughts on all three points Rahat. I remember, my parents used to tell me that how they used to cherish small happiness like having ice-cream on their birthday and that too homemade. Things changed and in our generation, Vadilal or Quality ice-cream took place of homemade ice-cream but it didn’t loose the charm of special moments. Today, kids have forgotten to cherish the happy moments they get. They get everything at one click. Somewhere parents are also responsible for hit behavior. I, try to keep balance when my kids ask for something. we cannot say straight no or say its not available as they are aware that Amazon has everything. 🙂 I do inculcate Delayed Gratification.

    Talking about chasing there dreams, they see me living my dream everyday in the form of writing/podcasting. Same I tell them that education’s very important but you should never let your dreams die or take a back seat.

    Sorry for the long comment but I loved the positivity in your post.

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      Such lovely thoughts Alpana. And i do remember quality walls and vadilal. Infact i used to enjoy something as simple as a bowl of curd with sugar that my mum would prep just for me. Todays kids actually don’t value these small moments and like you rightly elucidated, its us parents who are at fault.

      In hindsight when i look at raising kids, i feel its the most important, difficult task. Because if we screw up, wwe will be leaving these damaged individuals who aren’t capable of being independent, or with any other flaw.

      We definitely cant and shudnt learn parenting on the job

  2. Dr. Surbhi Prapanna

    Such an insightful post Dr. Rahat and I agree with each point you had shared. Personally I feel it is very important to maintain a balance in follow your passion and at the same time put equal attention on getting a degree and completing your education. Nowdays kids are so smart and I believe they could do that very well. At my time I was highly interested in pursuing degree in journalism but as per my father’s wish and guidence I did medical. But at the end I m happy that with blogging i m doing something that is creative and offer me an opportunity to share my views with world with power of digital medium.

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      Omg we have similar stories. I wanted to pursue computer engineering. Bt i come from a family of doctors and eventually was brain washed into it😂 Now i absolutely love being a Physician and i cant imagine my life without it. But then came phase 2 of my life and i discovered blogging. You put it so well. It helps us unleash our creative side and its so good.

  3. Harshita Nanda

    Such pertinent points. I absolutely concur with you that children nowadays are very entitled!

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      I noticed it too and a university in texas found this in a research done on tweens and teens. Guess we as parents have got lots to do when it comes to parenting new age kids.

  4. The Champa Tree

    These are some valuable lessons that are forgotten in this millennia. Kids should learn the value of everything. As parents that is the greatest gift we could give them. The points you gave are quite relevant and relatable too

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      True. Just providing everything that the kids ask for, simply because we can afford that, will only make our kids ungrateful. One time in life when they aren’t in a position to gt what they want thats when it will hurt them the most

  5. Rakhi Jayashankar

    You took me back to my teenage when I told my mother, it’s your job ma. I feel so ashamed about myself when I look back. Yes our kids should know the value of everything. Loved your post totally

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      Hey thanks. I am guilty of that too. But we can change it with our kids

  6. Roma

    You touched the right chords dear and I can see this drift. Thank you for revisiting them for us that we can take due lessons as parents, really insightful post

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      Thank you Roma. Its so important to make the changes so our kids can get a better life

  7. Cindy Dsilva

    Financial independence and chasing dreams should be done together. I did one and then got kids and started the other. Now only passion, no real financial freedom.

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      Right thats what I was saying that kids need to do smart work in today’s competetive world.

  8. momcaptureslife

    You have touched the right chord . Todays kids actually don’t value these small moments and like you rightly said its us parents who are at fault. I am trying to incorporate small deeds where she has to actually need to earn these things .

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      Thats such a lovely approach to teaching kids the little joys of life. Would love to know more about it

  9. Tina Basu

    These are very important things to learn early on in life. and we parents need to teach these values to our kids too – in time.

  10. In the pace of life we have to understand what is quality time. Quality time is not when you are free to spend time with family it is the time when they need you around. Once we make our kids understand small nuances of life then these lessons will be with them for lfe.

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      Absolutely correct. Life happens amidst these races and we need to slow down to enjoy the little joys that life has to offer

  11. Neha Sharma

    Thank you for writing this. I agree that times have changed and so does the parenting styles. And we should teach these important life lessons to our kids now. Living a minimalistic life and practicing gratitude are great ways, we have also started doing that. It does make a difference.

  12. mummatalks

    Loved reading this. We have spent out childhood with minimalistic things to enjoy… but kids do todays generation get everything easily. While giving things to kids may not be wrong but its important to make then realise the value of things that they have.

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      Absolutely and we can best achieve this by practicing minimalism ourselves

  13. There are a lot of things that are valuable to learn early on. These are some important life lessons which are necessary to know by all of us.

  14. Sandy N Vyjay

    This is an interesting read. Times have changed and the perspective of raising children and the dynamics have also changed.The new generation does have a sense of entitlement as you mentioned.

  15. Tina Basu

    These are such important life lessons for every one. Sometimes slowing down and enjoying life is more important.

    1. Dr. Rahat Sayyad

      Thats how we can best cherish the little joys that life has to offer

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