Tuesday, February 24, 2009

"Whats the worst that can happen?"

This is a question we have always asked our kids....Its a question I learned to ask myself when I was young. It works wonders getting over the fear of the unknown.

Be honest, its the unknown that keeps so many where they are....people are frozen because of fear - fear of failure, fear of success, fear of they dont know what is coming. This question walks you through the worst that can happen and when you actually visualize it - it just may not be that bad.

In my younger days, I used it before I did something I knew I wasnt supposed to do and if my perceived punishment didnt sound intolerable, I did what I wanted to do. I try to not let my kids see how this question can be used for evil ;) I try to let them see that the worst you think isnt the worst at all - its something you could actually live with...

It can be used when they are going to ask something of someone - whats the worst? They could say "No." - Not so bad....

It can be used when they are deciding to try for something - whats the worst? You might not make it - Not so bad....

It can be used to prepare kids in uncertain times - whats the worst? Well, we wont be able to afford your private school and we would homeschool you - To a teenager, it just might be worse than her imagination ;) Im kidding of course - but it allows the seed to be planted that if the worst does come to pass, it isnt a surprise, which is what makes the worst, worst.

I contend that its the shock - the surprise - that makes circumstances feel much more dire than they really are. The sudden loss, the sudden grief, the sudden change that no one likes.

Playing this little mental game also gives opportunities to figure out what they will do next - to have a plan - to be proactive. It gives kids a sense of control in times that may seem out of their control. They learn that their response - how they handle something - is ENTIRELY within their control. How they react to situations DIRECTLY influences how they will feel about that situation and how they respond and how they come out of it.

We have all met a "victim" - life happens to them, and its always the worst....they can become nails on a chalkboard....

Playing this game, keeps the "victim" at bay - thank goodness....

Playing this game gives a child power and lets face it, being a child can be one of the most powerless positions to hold in society. Giving your kids ability to cope with change and uncertainty could be one of the best lessons you teach....especially these days.....

As always, Pray - Praise - Prepare

3 comments:

Mo said...

Sage advice for kids of all ages.

Cygnus MacLlyr said...

Just the blog title sends shivers of "lookie here" red-neck-dom up my spine.

But you give it a neat, positive twist...

Good stuffs!

MeadowLark said...

I have always believed that stuff happens to you when you don't expect it.

Which is why I always try to "practice" for worst case scenarios... 'cause then I won't be surprised and caught off guard.

Glad to be back from vacation. I missed you guys! :)