We are sovereign beings with free will. Our task is to find out how we think we should live our lives based on our skills, talent and interests. We are raised in families whose job it is to support, protect and educate us to become self-sufficient. Everyone is different and each of us needs to learn how to get along with others. Others can advise you, but you are the only one who can control how you think and behave.
There is an automatic feedback system for every decision you make. If it is a good decision, you will recognize the benefits of your decision. If it is a bad decision, you will recognize the punishment you will suffer. If you fail to avoid bad decisions, your circumstances will not improve. In families, we try to give advice and direction so that family members avoid bad friends and bad decisions. It is pointless to try to get others not to make bad decisions.
Those who make bad decisions learn by “stepping on rakes”. If you step on a rake just right, the handle will fly up and hit you in the head. Self-learning is like that. All bad decisions are punished one way or another. No amount of preaching and nagging is more effective than the punishment that comes to those who get themselves in trouble.
If you have tried to counsel a family member to avoid bad decisions, you have done enough. You must trust that if they didn’t listen, they will surely learn by “stepping on rakes”.
The most common confrontation can be over times when a child is not keeping up with their class. Teachers and parents need to tell the child where they are, but they also need to wait and let the child use free will to respond. Usually it’s boredom that makes the child’s mind wander. Also some children are more hyper than others and are easily distracted. This is not an illness; it’s a circumstance that is very predictable, especially with boys.
Children are like a box of chocolates; you never know what you are going to get. Children do not develop on a schedule; they all develop differently. But that doesn’t mean they will not develop at all. Some are “late bloomers” but the eventually catch up. They were just busy thinking about other things.
The current drug problem is the result of bad friends and bad decisions and will take its toll. Redirecting recovering addicts to productive pursuits is a big part of the answer to rehabilitating them. Again, their free will needs to ignite to save themselves from the misery they created with their bad decisions.
There are countless examples of children who were slow in school and in life until their free will connected over something that ignited it. They become “A” students or good athletes to satisfy their need to win or their need master something or to aspire to a more prestigious group. Who they become is extremely personal and is usually based on their unique abilities.
I can cite examples of students who went from being slackers in school to become millionaires in life. They simply weren’t interested in what was going on in school at the time.
Norb Leahy, Dunwoody GA Tea Party Leader