How to be a good role model?
Interesting question, right? It’s one we should definitely ask our children to define, themselves, and also to teach them how to be a good role model for others.
When our children are young, they look up to so many people, but why not teach them at an early age (especially as teenagers) how to be a good role model for others.
Today let’s discuss:
- 3 Characteristics of what defines a good role model
- What isn’t a good role model
- How to be a Good Role Model
What Defines a Role Model
As Christina Ellis points out in the our interview (above), teens are often under the influence of, what can seem like, everyone else.
The artists they listen to and follow on social media.
The list goes on and on.
As Christina also points out, there are three things that define an influencer:
- They teach us to think
- Challenge us
- Role model the way
Unfortunately, many of the people our kids follow (and perhaps even adore) are NOT great role models.
Characteristics of a Negative Role Model
In this age of Social Media we need to let our children know early on what isn’t a good role model. Just because we like an athlete, celebrity, movie star or whom ever, this doesn’t make them a role model.
Take for instance, Cardi B who recently tweeted:
For these past two years I been watching what I say and I haven’t been myself. I been feeling trap and sad cause it’s not ME but everybody tell me to be it for me to be this “rolemodel”and guess what ? People still spit my past right in my face so for now imma be my old self again https://t.co/yyznDymIYp
— iamcardib (@iamcardib) April 6, 2019
Talk to them about the difference between liking someone’s music versus, perhaps, liking that person and/or their behavior.
Your children may not even be familiar with some of the behavior of their favorite celebrity. If his or her friends were behaving in that way, would they be friends with them still?
Again, they need to understand that it’s okay to like the product (music, movies, etc) that someone produces and not like them or their behavior. They need to recognize that the Cardi B’s of the world are not going to be a positive influence as a role model.
How to be a Good Role Model
Encourage your child to step into the role of influencer (or leader) in one area of their lives.
Ask them where they could step in with their friends, teach their friends to think, challenge them and role model the way.
In sports, for example, if your child notices his or her teammates are arriving late or unprepared, maybe approach them and suggest that they do something differently (warm up together before practice, be there earlier, etc.) in order to impress the coach.
Challenge them to think about how much of an impact that would have on the overall performance of the team.
And then role model the way.
Conclusion: Good Role Models for Youth
Our kids are being influenced by what can feel like everyone else in their lives, from friends to boyfriends or girlfriends to celebrities online.
Which is why it’s so important to talk to our kids about how they define an influencer and what they consider to be a good or bad role model.
Let them know that it’s okay to like the music or movies or their favorite celebrities, but also talk to them about the behavior of that celebrity. Would they want to be friends with someone behaving that way.
Encourage them to find one area of their lives where they could step into the leadership role, themselves. Encourage them to think about the impact this could have… in class, sports, or any other area of their lives.
Have you had this conversation with your kids? Jump back into our Facebook group and let us know how it went!