Maybe obsessing is the wrong term for it. I'm not sure what the right one is, though, so it will have to do.
I wasn't sure what to write about this week, but a conversation that I was having with a friend about last week's post on swearing really stuck with me. During the course of that conversation, I started thinking about all of the concepts that I care more about instilling or preventing in my children than swearing.
Parenting priorities really differ, but I think at a very basic level there's quite a bit we can agree on--secular or religious, Christian, Buddhist, Muslim, Jain, Hindu, Sikh, Ba'hai, whathaveyou. We all want to turn out good people.
Here's the list of things that I care about more than swearing when it comes to raising my children.
I bet you'll find that you really agree.
- Don't just be good. Do good.
- Care about people. Really care about people.
- Care about avoiding what causes pain, and healing pain when you do cause it.
- Think before you speak.
- Think before you do anything.
- Respect the right of others to exist.
- Be unafraid to stand up for yourself or those that have no one to stand up for them.
- Know your privilege. Use it to make the world better.
- Work hard, but know when to let go.
- Remember what's important: family and friends and love and beauty, reading and writing and thinking and creating.
- Take time to slow down and really see what is around you.
- Stop before you judge. Put on that person's eyes and imagine what the world look like for them.
- Take the time to listen to other voices. Don't talk over them. He who talks the loudest isn't necessarily right.
- Respect the world around you. Don't take it for granted. It may be limited, it may be finite, but it is worth protecting and treasuring.
- Take time to breathe.
- Look away from the screens around you and take the time to connect with the real world.
- Know the power of a smile. Understand how so many little things can improve your life, and the lives of those around you.
- Do something you love.
- Commit, and follow through.
- Know your weakness. Treasure your strengths. Utilize all of them.
- Know your dreams. Understand them. If you can make them possible, do it.
- Love unconditionally. Know when to walk away.
- See yourself as valuable. You are.
This is my short list. What's yours?