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Our Kids Learn Best by Experience

Kids Learn By Experience
Cara Maksimow
Written by Cara Maksimow

They have so little control over whet they eat, what they do in school, when they play, and when they go places that picking out clothes is a way for them to have some control over their environment and make their own choices.

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I don’t get it. When I was a kid shorts were worn from around Memorial Day to Labor day. By the time school started we were wearing fall clothes, which almost never included shorts. Today young boys seem to want to wear shorts ALL YEAR LONG.

Today I read an article posted by Today Parents. In it a physician argues that it is important to try and encourage kids to wear long pants for health and safety reasons. I get it, if it is below 40 degrees I feel as if I start fantasizing about moving closer to the equator! This is how I would like to see my children dress in the winter:

Kids seem to be different.
This is how my son chooses to dress:

shorts winter
My son will wear shorts till about 20 degrees. At that point he then concedes that he may want to cover up those skinny 8 year old bones. In fact just today he had on long pants because the past two days have been about 10 degrees and when his sister told him today was going to be almost 40 degrees he insisted on going back upstairs to change his outfit.
Really?

I do not get it.

Maybe they just don’t feel the cold like I do? That could be true. Also, being stylish and looking good may trump comfort, so I guess I can relate.  I just need to think about my sore feet after spending the evening in pretty high heels.

Our Kids Learn Best by Experience

I have learned that kids will learn so much better from experience than from being lectured by mom and dad. Granted, safety is an issue to be concerned about. I concede there are some things that are just too dangerous to learn by trial and error, but getting dressed to go to school ( for the most part) is not one of those things. When my son is outside he is usually running around the entire time.

The less I nag him about what he wears, the better choices he makes. He may not have on long pants today but he has a hat, gloves and his jacket. In the book Lose that Mommy Guilt, Tales and Tips from an Imperfect Mom I explain my rational for not arguing like this:

Some kids have strong opinions about what they wear. They have so little control over whet they eat, what they do in school, when they play, and when they go places that picking out clothes is a way for them to have some control over their environment and make their own choices.

So pick and chose your battles wisely and don’t get too hung up on the clothes. Frankly I think the concern is more about other people judging our parenting than it is about how cold our kids really are. Let it go.

Based on my experience, I believe the less of a big deal you make it, the more likely comfort will win out over fashion.

For more tales and tips of parenting imperfection check out Lose that Mommy Guilt!

Identity Magazine is all about empowering women to get all A’s in the game of life – Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.™ Every contributor and expert answer the Identity 5 questions in keeping with our theme. Their answers can be random and in the moment or they can be aligned with the above article. As a team, we hope to inspire and motivate ourselves and inspire you to get all A’s.

1. What have you accepted within your life, physically and/or mentally? What are you still working on accepting?

My kids will make choices I do not agree with and I need to pull back the control as appropriate. I appreciate that I have accepted that fact but still need reminders at times.

2. What have you learn to appreciate about yourself and/or within your life, physically and mentally? What are you still working on to appreciate?

I appreciate the mistakes I have made that have brought me the insights I have today.

3. What is one of your most rewarding achievements in life? What makes YOU most proud? What goals and dreams do you still have?

Parenting and my family.

4. We all have imperfections, so we think. The truth—we are all perfectly imperfect. What are your not-so-perfect ways? What imperfections and quirks create who you are—your Identity?

I am pretty goofy and silly and have accepted that “cool” is just not me!

5. “I Love My…” is an outlet for you to express and appreciate all the positive traits that make you…well… YOU! Sharing what you love about yourself will make you smile, feel empowered, and uplift your spirit and soul. (we assure you!) Identity challenges you to complete the phrase “I Love My…?”

I love my ability to see kindness in beauty in unlikely places.

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About the author

Cara Maksimow

Cara Maksimow

Cara is a therapist, coach, author & speaker dedicated to helping others successfully navigate through times of stress and challenge. As the founder of Maximize Wellness Counseling and Coaching LLC she provides clinical therapy, coaching, wellness workshops on various topics including Increasing Optimism, Goal Setting, Resilience. She is also the Author of “Lose than Mommy Guilt, Tales and Tips from an Imperfect Mom” as well as series of Calendar/Planners to keep you on track with personal and professional goals every day. She specializes in supportive positive therapy and coaching services for life and work transitions, depression, anxiety and managing disease. She works collaboratively with her clients on problem solving, goal setting, identification of strengths, increasing resiliency, stress reduction, positivity and mindfulness. More information on services, schedule a free phone consultation or to check out workshops or books, “Lose That Mommy Guilt” or “Kick Ass Plan” go to be website www.maximize-wellness.com