In this series of A Reflection: Next Gen Parenting, we would like to share with you what we have learned in our parenting journey over the past 28 years of nurturing our three boys into young adulthood.

Finding Life-purpose

We helped our children to find their own “Ikigai” i.e. life-purpose [1]. Life is more than just getting good grades, good jobs, a good salary, then getting married and having kids. We continue to encourage our children to do what they love as that is the only way to do anything excellently. During their schooling years, our children were exposed to music, the arts, swimming, and self-defense classes, while tuition was kept to the minimum. When they were young, they needed to be creative with the limited number of toys that we could provide for them. Through “play” in daily situations, they discovered what they loved and what they were good at. Now, this has become their mission in life and they get paid for doing what they love. Although we encouraged our children to acquire at least basic tertiary educational qualification, we always reminded them that they need not be limited by education in choosing a career.

Self-learning Lifestyle

We always remind our children that a great leader must be a great reader, writer, and speaker. During their holidays, they chose books to read and summarized them using mind-mapping and presented their learning points during our weekly family meeting, for which they received an extra allowance of RM10 per book. From time to time, we had family speaking competitions with monetary prizes. We believe school is just a transition in life for acquiring some knowledge and fine-tuning our socializing skills. The most important training ground is our own home. Home is where we trained our children to examine all things and discern what is right or wrong from moral and spiritual perspectives. We told our children repeatedly, “Learning to learn as a lifestyle is more important than the formal education offered in school or university since most learning before graduation is already out of date by the time you graduate.” Often, we would explore solutions to BIG problems together, making the task a common project that allowed us to come together and achieve great things together. In the process, we learned and grew as a family, and we do this to this day.

“A great leader must be a great reader, writer, and speaker”

Authors: Dr Peter Ting

Reposted from old website 11 May 2018

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