Parenting is all about setting safe zones for the children to uncover their fullest potential. The whole motivating the troops gets a bit more complicated when it comes to getting the CEOs of the Home moving everyone towards a bigger new project/goal.
Why is it more complicated? Life is complicated balancing act sometimes. There is the matter of work life balance… parenting schooling balance… home finance… competing leisure scheduling… extended families… church activities… and always being positive role models for the children.
Motivating the troops
The need to have big goals is very self-evident. Without them, many just coast in life and wonder why they’re not going where they want to go. Having a good idea where you want to go informs a lot of how you plan your days to get there.
How do you get your spouse to share your vision, especially when that vision is foreign to them? Well, there is no magic answer to this question. Today, for the sake of keeping a motivational tone, the blog will focus on one small aspect of motivation.
Model the Success
Nothing leads a powerful example like actual success. When there is no evidence an idea can work, it is hard to rally the troops to follow you. While many guys hope their masculinity is reason enough for the gal to follow, that is not how the world works. Especially when your lady is very smart, very capable, has a track record of her own success. Hence why you’re both CEOs of your home.
One small quick example… if the family has had a lot of momentum doing vacations one way and now one person wants to change how vacations are planned, handled, executed… it’s going to be hard to get a lot of “buy-in” if there are no examples of success doing it a different way. Some families will easily experiment, others won’t. However, taking steps to showcase how the different approach works in smaller settings and building up trust that you know what you’re talking about sets the stage for success in changing how a vacation is planned.
Bite Sized Tackle of Big Sized Goals
In motivation as in goals, one has to know the big picture. Then, take that big picture and cut it down to smaller sizes. Much like a puzzle. And then, each day, one tackles one piece. Over time, the big picture will re-emerge.
It is easier to sell someone who is busy to add one small thing to their plate than adding a huge thing. We all have super full plates. As leaders of the home, when initiating something new, it is best to explain the big picture so everyone knows what’s on deck, then break it down into steps for each member to try. That way they can score their quick small wins, build up confidence, and follow the journey to completion.
All this academic talk about goals and motivation…
In practice we do this already all the time. Children have to go to the various grades of school to move up to adulthood. Biking is taking in steps that start with training wheels that eventually come off before the child can go racing a big event.
Dating starts off nice and easy casual, then gets serious before a proposal is made before a life is built together. (usually)
Same with the career we pursue. We first figure how to send resumes. Then we figure how to interview. Then we get the job and figure how to learn the job. Then we work up the ladder of the career.
Same for teaching the family to do new things. That’s how one motivates the troops. Bite size experiences. Bite size moves. But the leader knows the big picture and plans each day accordingly to keep the family moving forward. Keep the relationship growing and progressing.
The difference is that leading a home requires dialogue, negotiations, and diplomacy. When done right, one doesn’t notice the work too much. When done wrong, life is quickly a battle ground.
As you start your work, keep in mind the goals you’ve set for your family. How can you break it down into steps and keep the troops excited and motivated? Then, break that down a bit further. The morning goals… and the afternoon goals. Each day. Before you know it, the family as a team has moved forward towards a better place at the end of the week.
Go out and make this week awesome CEOs. Lead and motivate your troops to be their best selves!