Over this weekend I was part of a rather interesting event.

On parenting in today’s world.

As I was gathering my thoughts to share with the audience, I realized how much being an entrepreneur has helped me in parenthood. And as Vidur turns 7, I can see how parenting is helping back in the entrepreneurial journey too.

What became evident rather quickly, from the questions and reactions, few of us are prepared for parenting.

As humans, we are horrible at understanding other people. We are unpredictable, biased, judgmental, emotional, layered with our own context – to truly have the ability to step into someone else’s shoes and make sense of it.

Being a parent requires not just that, but also the ability to guide, direct, advice and (as most of us unfortunately believe) command.

Not easy!

Here are 3 thoughts that have helped me

  • Stop calling them special.

They are most likely not. And even if they are, don’t trick them into believing that being special means you are never wrong, you will never fail, and even if you participate you still win a medal!

That’s not real life.

  • Realize that you are technically incapable of telling them what they should become

The world is changing so rapidly, that the notion of parents still trying to impose careers into their kids – doctors, engineers, lawyers – is laughable.

As average parents we are horribly ill equipped to predict the future. So let’s stop telling them what they should become.

Instead let’s train them on how they should think about it.

  • Don’t take away their immersion

The biggest asset in today’s world is the ability to focus.

And kids have that.

When they play.

When they forget everything. Food, TV, sleep, school.

And immerse themselves in a task – that consumes them.

Don’t interrupt. Don’t call them for lunch or dinner. Don’t order them to sleep. Don’t ask them to pack up. Let them be.

Funny how critical the role of a parent is to shape the future of our world.

And how many of us are just not prepared.

Worst still, we rely on history (our parents) to tell us what we should do.

History can only teach us why we did what we did. Not what we should do going forward.

Enroll yourself in the school of parenting. That’s the one profession that matters.