Successful kids are thinkers, creators and innovators. Do what you have to do to get your child thinking for themselves, making decisions and creating/dreaming. In my class, my students had significant jobs and responsibilities. I gave guidelines but they created the order, gave their ideas, made decisions and made adjustments if needed. I didn’t dictate the “how”, but rather worked with them to make sure they understood the “what” and “why”. As adults, we do all we can to cover and protect our kids. But thinking for them is counterproductive. Put them in situations where they have to problem solve, correct their mistakes and come up with a plan for how they are going to win in any given scenario or circumstance. When I am teaching, I always keep in mind the reality that my students will need life skills that can carry them well beyond their time with me. If we’re not equipping our children for the future, what are we doing? Success is a mindset. Empower your kids to think about who they want to be, not just what they want to do. The phrase, “when I grow up I want to be..” in actuality is more of a declaration of what they want to do or where they want to work. It’s our responsibility as their mentors or parents to cultivate their understanding of what makes them who they are. Your kids will succeed when they are clear, confident and secure. They will try more things when they are not afraid of failure and are willing to take risks—these are areas where we can lead the way and show them just how powerful they can be.