My young kids are already really focused on money and status. How do I redirect them to focus on character and goodness?
Even in the worst of times, our country has a lot to offer a typical family. We are an abundant culture. Because of that, it’s really easy for kids to get attracted to the things that shine and glitter.
There’s something inside all of us that is intrinsically drawn towards that, so don’t be surprised that your kids are already looking into the success fantasy. On top of that, they’re bombarded with images every day through the media and advertising that draws them to that.
But before you’re down on them, you need to go look in the mirror. If your kids are really starting to get sensitive to labels and the “best of the best,” you might want to look in the mirror and ask yourself, “Is there something about the way we’re living our life that may be building this desire into them? Are we living satisfied lives? Do we always want something better? Are we the kind of people that get drawn in and lured into the success lie?”
Many times we don’t realize that that’s exactly what we can be doing. So look at yourself first.
Here’s what we have found that has always helped our kids keep their focus in the right direction: we got them serving others. We especially got them serving people that had a whole lot less than they did.
When they were around these young people and folks that really had hardly anything in life, but they saw that there were things greater than materialism that made life far more rich. It helped them appreciate what they had and not be so desirous of the next best thing.
If we don’t build this into them now they can get drawn into the success lie, and it can absolutely consume their adult life. If you want to raise a kid to be completely irrelevant, raise them to want success in the future.
I love your question because you’re sensitive to this. Build the character into them by getting them out there where they have to exercise character. Then when they see what a balanced life is like, they’re going to see that all of this “new and improved” stuff is just that: stuff. You’ll be fine.