Here is my Wednesday story from my never ending notebook and everalsting coloured pencil !
A horse with no identifying marks wandered into a farmyard. The farmer’s young son said he’d take the responsibility for returning the horse to its owner. The boy mounted the horse, urged it towards the road and let it choose its own direction.
The boy actively intervened only when the horse stopped to graze or wandered off the lanes and into a field. Otherwise, he just sat on the horse.
When the horse finally ambled into a farm several miles away, the farmer said,” How did you bring it here? Hey, how did you even know it was our horse?”
The boy said,” I didn’t know. The horse knew. All I did was keep him on the road.”
This story is a great example of being a parent or leader with a light and gentle touch – using a nurturing nudge rather than a sledgehammer approach to leading, guiding and influencing children regardless of their age.
The boy is confident that the horse has its own resources for coping with the environment and will find its own way home. All he does is occasionally steer it back on track whenever it ambles off the desired path.
Sometimes an important part of being a parent is to simply be able to hold a space for your children to work out their own solutions to their own problems or situations.
• What has this story got to do with you as a parent?
• How can you sit on the horse so it will find its own way?
• How will your children benefit from this approach as they grow and mature?
• What will the benefits be to you as a family if you try this approach, particularly with your teenager?
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About the author
Sue Atkins is a Parenting Expert who offers practical guidance for bringing up happy, confident, well behaved children. She is also the author of “Raising Happy Children for Dummies” one in the famous black and yellow series published worldwide and the highly acclaimed Parenting Made Easy CDs. She regularly appears on BBC Breakfast and The Jeremy Vine Show on BBC Radio 2 and her parenting articles are published all over the world.
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Sue Atkins the Parenting Expert
T: + 44 1342 833355 M: 07740 622769
Surrey RH7 6LF