Children – And the Goal of Growing Up

“I just watched a big kid do it, so I should be able to…”, originally uploaded by tadnkat.I’ve had an interesting time seeing the following datum in action:

“The child has to have a goal. His goal is growing up and being an adult. As long as he has this goal he does pretty well. He can come through most anything. ‘Someday I am going to…’ That’s hope. That’s the mind–overcome obstacles toward a known goal.

“Now, any system which would seek to convince a child that being a child–I mean, this system knowingly or unknowingly seeks to convince the child that the thing to be is a child, is going to lead this child away from a goal and is going to make his wits rot just by that and by that alone.”

from lecture 
Processing Children in Research & Discovery Volume 3 

15 July 1950

The datum is also discussed in the quite-excellent Successfully Raising Children Course, and is one I’ve found working in curious ways with my 2 year old daughter.   As long as she understands that she’s growing up to be a big girl, and there are certain things that “big girls” can do, I continue to get improving abilities & responsibilities from her.  If she’s convinced she’s a “little kid” or “baby”,  she reverts to old behaviour and acts more like a baby.    Simple things like potty training, eating well at the table, helping with chores, etc all can very visibly be tied to this.

When I did the Successfully Raising Children course at the Washington DC Church of Scientology, I had a thought that this concept of setting and keeping a goal of “being an adult” would be one I’d continually have to revisit as my kids grew up.  And that’s definitely turned out to be the case.  As time goes on, I’m continually having to find new things as goals that make it worthwhile and desirable for my daughter to want to be more “grown up” – quite contrary to the Toys “R” Us tagline.

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