2 Important Mindsets for Homeschool Parents
There are so many issues that affect you emotionally as a homeschool parents. You face pressure to do everything just right—every day. Many of you have pressure—either direct or at least implied—to prove you are doing it right and that your children are not falling behind into some major abyss where they will never be able to find a job in the real world. Nobody wants to be responsible for their children living in a van down by the river.
Today’s episode of 101 Homeschool Ideas focuses on two important mindsets that will help you overcome the challenges and setbacks that are bound to happen on a regular basis.
Mindset #1 Today’s Mishap Will Lead to Tomorrow’s Success
I came home the other day and my 11 year-old started telling me about what Thomas Edison said about messing up the light bulb over 1,000 times. With big eyes, my son told me, “Dad, he did not even get upset. He just said, ‘I didn’t fail 1,000 times. I found 1,000 ways it would not work.’”
Then he told me the story about Edison’s West Orange Laboratory. In December 1914, Edison’s factory and lab erupted into a massive inferno. The fire destroyed over half of the buildings, and, according to one source, the damages reached over 23 million dollars in today’s money and the insurance only covered about 1/3. Rather than getting upset, Thomas Edison said to his son, Charles, “Go and get your mother and all her friends. They’ll never see a fire like this again.”
The rest of the story is powerful. That night, Thomas Edison told reporters, “Although I am 67 years old, I’ll start all over again tomorrow.” Within two days following the fire, Edison had begun a massive reconstruction process AND he had finalized a design for a portable searchlight that could be seen from miles around. Within six months, Edison was presenting the prototype to large crowds in New Jersey parks. His idea… it came from watching the firemen struggle to see through the smoke and haze of the fire.
My son was so moved by the fact that Thomas Edison did not give up after that many attempts and the fact that he did not get discouraged and give up when his factory burned down.
Here are just a few quotes for you about building on what happens today—ESPECIALLY IF IT WAS A DISASTER!
“Our greatest glory is not in never falling but in rising every time we fall.” ~ Confucius
“Failure provides the opportunity to begin again, more intelligently.” ~ Henry Ford
“The fastest way to succeed is to double your failure rate.” ~ Thomas Watson Sr.
“I never learned a thing from a tournament I won.” ~ Bobby Jones
These are pictures of my youngest son. He came to work with me one day and while I was out of the office he started playing with my stress ball (a balloon filled with corn starch). When I cam back, this is what I found. I did not get upset… All I could do was just laugh. I mean look at this boy. He knew that he had messed up and I did not have to tell him that. So we laughed together and cleaned it up.
Well, a week later, this same son was at work with me again and one of my co-workers who had heard what had happened asked my son if he would like to play with another stress balloon. My son said, on his own accord, “No thank you. I might pop another one.” I laughed even harder, but look at what this failure led to: he recognized on his own the potential for problems. That is a major success in my book.
Mindset #2 Do Something Today—Take Action
Regardless of what you see as your biggest obstacle to your homeschool success, take a step in the direction of overcoming TODAY! Do not let that hurdle loom on your horizon. Get past it so you can focus on the incredible sunrises and sunsets of each day.
Brian Tracy has written a fantastic book called Eat That Frog! 21 Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time. I think you should read this book. It is only 117 pages. You can read it in a weekend. The first time I read it, I actually finished it the same day. Get you pencil ready and mark the book up. When ideas come, jot them down in the margins.
One of the greatest tips in the book is #2: Plan Every Day in Advance. Now, I am not an organizer by nature… but this tip has been so helpful to me. Tracy wrote, “One of your top goals at work (or home) should be for you to get the highest possible return on your investment of mental, emotional, and physical energy. The good news is that every minute spent in planning saves as may as ten minutes in execution. It takes only about 10 to 12 minutes for you to plan out your day, but this small investment of time will save you up to two hours (100 to 120 minutes) in wasted time and diffused effort throughout the day.” You can click on the image to get it for $8.00.
As you are making plans… make sure they are action-based plans. They need to surround what you will do… not some end all goal.
Plan A: I want my children to read Les Miserables and finish the Pre-Algebra book.
Plan B: I will read pages 1-25 with Jason in Les Miserables and Jared will do lesson 4 in Pre-Algebra
Notice the difference between these two plans. Make your plans specific and action-based. You will accomplish more and free up enough time that you can read Eat that Frog!