If you feel like you’re driving the bus to your kids’ success in life, STOP!
Meet Taayoo Murray and the secrets she’s discovered for getting kids to be self-motivated. In her 2017 book Making Me Happen, Taayoo helps kids and their parents navigate the complexities of our world especially when it comes to achieving happiness and success.
Any parent knows how hard it can be to motivate kids. I struggled to find what worked for each of my three children, eager to help in the classroom and in life. But parenting is a delicate balance without an instruction manual.
Whether it’s deciding how much to let your kids work independently on homework or the need to guide them through every classroom assignment, there are no simple rules.
Parenting decisions are complicated by our children’s unique personalities and motivations. What creates accountability and focus for one child – like bribing them with ice cream or an extra tv time before bed (yes, I did that!) – can totally fail with another.
So when do we stop driving the bus and hovering over our kids like helicopter parents? Making Me Happen encourages parents to move over and share the driver’s seat. The program is the product of Taayoo’s experience as an educator and a parent.
Utilizing her experience as a human resource manager in systems and development, Taayoo developed a structured thinking approach to motivate her kids. It wasn’t long before parents began to ask about the recipe for her success. She knew she had something to share.
Taayoo’s program targets young people between the ages of 8 to 23 years of age. Its primary focus helps them develop healthy habits through character development and conscious goal setting.
What’s unusual about Taayoo’s step-by-step approach is the focus away from results-based learning.
These goals are often driven by parents and teachers. Instead, the focus centers on helping kids understand who they so they can create healthy life habits. These early habits are harbingers of our ability to successfully set and achieve goals. Furthermore, these are the skillsets that influence motivation and success.
Sounds simple, right? It is when you visit Taayoo’s website. Her program is flexible and can be adapted to a range of different audiences, from private lessons to classroom curriculums and interactive 90-minute workshops. The action plan takes parents and kids through a series of five sections, starting with the “Me, Myself and I” challenge and ending with the “8 Steps to Success”.
I like is that it takes some of the guessing out of the parenting equation. Taayoo says this is true, especially when it comes to knowing how to get her two sons Kyle (4th grade) and Mikhail (9th grade) to be responsible. Taayoo admits it’s been amazing to watch her kids. She says, “by meeting them where they are and making the goals relevant and relatable, it’s changed the way they live.”
When kids don’t succeed, this failure is a good thing because it comes at a time and with goals that allow for a softer landing.
Think about it. If you don’t know how to fail, you don’t know how to be resilient. We all need to adapt to change when life throws a curve-ball. So shifting the burden away from parental control becomes a great thing if we use it to equip our kids with the necessary tools they need to set and achieve goals.
Creating their own action plans and goals provides kids with the tools for success and they soon learn this success depends on factors like time management, self-image, fear and failure. Parents become coaches and kids grow and fail in safe surroundings.
Better yet, when failure becomes an integral learning tool we stop being afraid to fail. Failure becomes a good thing helping us to adjust, improve or change our road-map. And, the perspective is so freeing! We set new conditions for defining success, something industry gurus and revolutionary thinkers had to do for overcoming failure and navigated the unexpected.
When kids do this earlier in life, they are less likely to make excuses for failing and they minimize the risk of sabotaging their own success. Translation: the likelihood for happiness in adult life dramatically increases.
When I think back to my childhood and the things that made me happy, I realize how much time I wasted trying to live up to others’ expectations.
It’s comforting to know you can go back and set new conditions for success, particularly when the things we thought would make us happy don’t. Kids who feel ostracized or different from others around them can learn to be resilient and find the confidence to overcome other challenges like bullying. Without this resilience, their ability to lead and to feel truly valued in the world can seem impossible.
Thankfully, Taayoo shows us it’s never too late to learn and she admits we are always a work in progress. When I first met Taayoo at an inspirational speaking event in New York, I was impressed by her confidence and engaging style. When the presentation finished, Taayoo asked the first question which zeroed in on the parental challenges of creating work-life balance.
Later, when I had a chance to interview Taayoo, I learned more about her career and success working with kids. As I listened to her passion and commitment, I knew she role-modeled her truths. Case in point: her “30 miles in 30 days” challenge on Instagram showed she literally walked the walk.
Taayoo invites parents to join her Facebook group or connect via Twitter, where they’ll find tips and an ageless recipe for living life better. As we move into 2018, and consider the joys and hopes for our families and ourselves, I hope WomanScape readers will be inspired by this Instagram post by Taayoo, who promises the best is yet to come: