Counteracting the Negative With a Positive

two children running down sidewalk

Something I’ve been pondering deeply about The Mercenary is his tendency to be, ummmmm, bossy. The reason it worries me is that I was ahhhh, particularly strong in taking the lead during activities in my own early years. I wish that someone had been able to get through to me and make me understand what I was doing wrong and show me how better to get along with others. Oh well. Thick skulls make for slow learners.

We’re currently trying a two-pronged approach with this one. Part one is pointing out to him-gently, and without any condemnation-when he’s overwhelming others. If we’re at home, I’m pretty direct about it. Out and about in public we say a lot less but discuss in private later.

This kid is a born leader. Truly. Put him in a group and he’ll be orchestrating a mission complete with parts for everyone involved quickly. And he’s good at it. Kids often find themselves playing along before they know what hit them.

In addition to pointing out when he’s being overwhelming with his words or his actions (he has a bad habit of grabbing things from people without thinking), I explained to him that I really do think he has a gift in this area. I also explained that great leaders make sure that all team members have a job and that they think of their team members first. Then I told him that there’s a difference between who you are in your heart and what habits you may have.

He really seemed to like that, and I’m hoping to keep encouraging him with ways to lead and get along rather than constantly having to deal with arguments and dissent.

Earnest Parenting: help for parents of…strong children.

The editor-in-chief of Earnest Parenting, Amy is the mother of two sets of twin boys. Yes, they drive her crazy, but they also make her laugh occasionally. Amy enjoys writing, quilting, reading, and working on her burgeoning cyber empire.

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