I was inspired to write this blog after listening to “Today” on Radio 4 and hearing a short discussion about the fact that parents should be dressed to take their children to school. I also read an article in The Telegraph New Paper earlier this week on the same topic, plus have heard about the letter written by Kate Chisholm, the Head of Skerne Park Academy in Darlington asking parents to “dress appropriately in daywear that is suitable for the weather conditions” (Guardian New Paper).
I felt a responsibility as a genuine and caring child-development expert to underline the importance of exactly why it Is very important to be dressed to take your children to school, and explain without any patronage.
The first and most obvious reason that already been discussed is the role-modelling factor. During my career working with children I have been very privileged to observe first-hand exactly how important role-modelling is. I have also written about it in my book (unfinished at present), blogs and tweets, (@FamilyTeamCoach). Role-modelling is perhaps the biggest behaviour influence in a child’s environment – it’s incredible just how much it influences children’s behaviour. From my observations I think this is because it’s “unconscious”. The way you yourself behave has no direct bearing on a child and therefore role-modelling is able to surpass the “conscious mind” and go straight to the “unconscious”, hence making it very indirectly powerful in influence.
I have encourage children to make healthier choices (yes, eat more vegetables!), be more considerate, focus better and work hard, just to name a few, all through the power of role-modelling. Therefore ask yourself; “what type of impression is being given if I haven’t managed to get dressed to take my child to school?” Do you think it’s a dynamic, go getting impression that would inspire your child to work hard and be successful? Pat yourself on the back because I believe you know the answer already!! J If you are not bothering, because let’s be honest, it is about bothering to make the effort to get up in time and be dressed, then what message does this give your child about how much effort to put into their life – not much if your suggesting it’s not even worth getting dressed for the day!
Please, just think for a moment what type of subconscious message you would be giving your child if you didn’t even bother to get dressed to take them to school. Either you can’t be bothered (to make and effort of their education), or your simply unable to organise yourself enough to get dressed. Whatever way you look at it; does it create a good impression? In also additionally suggests that they have inconveniently interrupted your lie-in. Children’s education is not an inconvenience, it’s a blessing. If you want your child to work hard and do the best they can with the life they’ve been blessed with then you need to role-model the same. Some children don’t have the chance of an education, so please help your child take full advantage of the opportunity they have with education.
There are some children who, upon observing these types of parental habits and realising (subconsciously or consciously) that they do not bring about success, would do the opposite and work very hard to get out of the existence they’ve been born into. This is not typical however and if you want to guarantee your child’s success then you need to role-model it. And yes, I absolutely believe that role-modelling and the type of mindset you encourage your child to have can pretty much guarantee their success as happy adults who are very capable in their chosen career paths.
This brings us on to mindset; what type of mindset do you think you would be encouraging by not making the effort even to get dressed to take your child to school? Do you think it’s a mind set to work hard and always put in the extra effort to go the extra mile and out-do any competitors? Again, pat yourselves on the back because I believe you already know the answer to this one too!! Lets be honest, it quite frankly encourages laziness, although I think something deep down already told you – right?
I feel really fortunate to have learnt through my experiences that mindset is quite probably as important as physical health when it comes to success in life. I actually do also believe that mindset contributes to physical health; depending on what your mindset, there is a direct connection to how often you are ill. The reason I strongly believe this is because I’ve always had the mindset when “bugs” are going round; I bet I don’t get it! And I don’t; this May will mark 10 years since the last time I had a vomiting sickness bug; however working with children I’ve cleared sick up often! Mindset is a very powerful tool in the “human tool-kit”. Please help your child develop a positive strong and confident mindset by first showing them that their life (and yours) IS worth putting the effort into, first and foremost by getting dressed and ready to embrace life.
Finally, to me this is the most important reason of all why you should definitely always make the effort not only to get dressed, also to be reasonably smart looking too. This doesn’t have to mean never wearing any casual clothes, just looking like you’re glad to be alive; let me explain and you’ll see what I mean! If you don’t even get dressed and ready in the morning you’re actually giving yourself a strong subconscious message that that day is not worth making any effort for. And if you do this every day, think about the message being reinforced time and time again in your unconscious mind; it would be something like, “I’m not worth making the effort for and my life isn’t worth it either”. This is a terribly negative and damning message to give yourself (and your child) every day from first thing in the morning. Your worth more than that and so is your child, so please make the effort to at least get dressed. You only get each day once, and once it’s gone, it will never come back. Every day is blessing and unless you are extremely unwell, to spend a day of your life without having even gotten dressed is a shameful waste. J
Think of what you could have achieved had you made the effort? Thing about where you would be if you decided to continually make an effort? Think about how you would feel if you made the decision to turn your life around and start making an effort. Would you be in a better place with more prospects? I think the answers definitely “Yes”. J
In addition to getting dressed I also like to make the effort to tie my hair up attractively and put just a bit of make-up on (eye-liner and a colour-tinted lip salve). Helpful hint, if you eat healthily you don’t need any foundation/blusher because good, natural food brightens your complexion. The reason I like to put a bit of make-up is not vanity; it’s very simply to continually reinforce the message to myself that my life is worth making the effort for and that includes every day of my life. Quite literally I like to get dressed for success! So please make the effort and see how such a simple change can have a huge impact. J
The most successful people I know always remind me to stop at nothing and never let any “hurdle”, no matter how big it may seem, to get in my way. They continually remind me that one of the characteristics of successful is being able to turn “No’s” into “Yeses”. As a child I had a nighty that said on the front:
“My clock says Go,
My body says No!”
So to all the parents struggling to be able to get dressed in the morning to take their children to school; the first “no” that you need to change into a “yes” is to give yourself a reason to want to change your life around and thus have the willingness to get up in time and make the effort to get dressed. I urge you every morning to please go and enter the far and distance land of “Ward Robe”, as Mr Tumnus would say in The Lion the Witch and The Wardrobe, and tell yourself to put on some clothes! Say to yourself; “Yes – I am worth it”! If you’re still struggling to see the point of getting dressed and ready in the morning, or perhaps you don’t feel that your life is worth it please do get in touch because I can definitely help. I am extremely good and helping people realise their self-worth because it’s something I’ve had to learn myself. My website is; www.paulaelizabeth.com e-mail, email@example.com. I’m on Twitter and Instagram @FamilyTeamCoach, and on Facebook and LinkedIn as Paula-Elizabeth Jordan.