It’s all up to you. OK, maybe not EVERYTHING but, as a parent, you are the most influential person in your child’s life. During a move, life gets chaotic. Change is hard and our natural human reaction is to resist change. Sir Isaac Newton told us a very long time ago that objects at rest will remain at rest until something sets them in motion. And nothing has changed since then.
There is nothing we like better than our comfort zone. Our comfort zone naturally requires us to stay in a state of inertia. When we move with our children, inertia is destroyed and our comfort zone is obliterated. Guess what? NO ONE likes having their comfort zone obliterated, especially our kids.
How do we lead our kids through change; not just any change but a change that is often characterized at one of the top five stressors in life? We lead by example. Not by sugar-coating the situation and giving kids platitudes like, “You’re so outgoing. You’ll make new friends fast.” or “Things will be back to normal in no time.” These are all meant to help our kids through the tough times but we all know that “normal” is a thing of the past.
Helping our kids through change means accepting resistance; celebrating the good days and letting them have their bad days. Leading kids through change means we allow ourselves to have our own good days AND bad days. That we don’t hide the bad days but use them as a tool to model resilience, patience and persistence. Leading kids through change means we see the learning opportunities and facilitate each family members’ learning process at their own pace.
Peter Senge, thought leader in organizational management, is quoted as saying, “People don't resist change. They resist being changed!” Don’t try to change your children, or their resistance to the change in front of them. Lead them through the change together as a team.
For more information about the Moving Families Initiative®, please visit www.movingfamiliesinitiative.com.