There’s no such thing as motivation, there’s only self-motivation for both parents and, except in the earliest years or under threat of hurt, children.
Parents inclined to see their parental roles as ‘motivators’ may want to consider other methods. Love and nurturing fade in effectiveness for influencing and changing a child’s mindset as a child ages. Common sense counsels parents to develop new skills and techniques. These work: leadership guided by principles in the tweens and coaching guided by respect and trust in the teens.
Ø Self-interest is the psychological force that energizes self-motivation. The same psychological function motivates each child, albeit underdeveloped, unpredictable, and often nonsensical.
Ø Except to relieve anxiety and assuage hurt, both love and nurturing become increasingly ineffective to energize children after age six or seven.
Ø A leadership hierarchy, one parent more powerful and respected than the other, shapes toddler thinking best as the little ones transition toward the tweens.
Ø Leadership overpowers love and nurturing in the development of tweens.
Ø Good leadership specializes in respect and trust downward before it’s earned and upward after it’s earned.
Ø Parents that split leadership roles into primary and secondary functions enable their selves to balance practical hard-headedness with loving soft-heartedness—the essence of raising tweens.
Ø Effectiveness of both parent leaders depends upon acceptance, endorsement, and backup of each other in front of the kids. Otherwise, respect for one or both weakens, and kids pick up more details for later getting their own way.
Ø After puberty, love and nurturing don’t work well in the teens, although they can help with angst and hurts. Leadership also weakens. Consequently, coaching works best to retain parental leverage.
Ø Mutual respect and trust exchanged between leaders and followers in the tweens provides the best foundation for successful coaching in the teens.
Considering only parental leverage in the teens, leadership principles provide good guidance for parental development in the tweens.
NOTE: More later about leadership principles and coaching. Nurturing is addressed in the series of that name listed in the CONTENTS page at blog top.
Details about the perils of co-equal leaders follow as next post facto.