I don’t want to sound like your father, but when was the last time you said “thank you”? When was the last time you took a minute to hold the door for someone other than a family member? Said yes ma’am or no sir? This is a quality that is slipping away in today’s society.
I know, I know, I get busy and forget to use common manners, but that is not an excuse. If my Mamaw (grandmother) saw me neglecting my duties as a man, she would give me a talking to or have me go get a switch…even as a grown man.
Why am I writing about something that has gone by the wayside you ask? Because it a quality that we as men and mentors of future men need to cultivate. Any of you that have little people, otherwise known as kids, should know that they mimic you whether you see it or not.
My oldest son plays dek hockey as I’m sure you have read before in my posts. I see the way the “teammates” act. I put teammates in quotations on purpose. They do not act like teammates sometimes. There are times that the players are only out for their own glory, other than that of the TEAM. The above qualities that I mentioned are signs of respect. Not only for those around you, but you as well. When you show respect you get respect in most cases. When I go to my son’s games, I watch the game and the players and even the parents and spectators of the game (as I commented on in my post about situational awareness). More times than not, you can match the player to the parent by their mannerisms and the way they talk to each other.
I’m sure if you have ever attended a sporting event with kids, you have witnessed the same. There is that kid that steals the ball from their own teammates so that they can make the shot and get the credit. That kid’s parents are the ones yelling for him to make the shot when it could cost the team the game because they think their kid is better than the rest. Then there are the parents, you know the ones making fun of the kid that tripped or doesn’t run as fast or skate as fast as their kid. Their kid is the one that bullies the other kids with their words, calling his own teammates stupid or retarded, but when another kid stands up to him, he cries and gets embarrassed and his mom gets mad and makes a scene.
If we like it or not, our little people are watching and learning from each of our everyday interactions. They look up to us and knowing or not, want to be like us. It’s your attitude and qualities that determine whether that is a good thing or a bad thing .
So how do we change this? Unfortunately this is not something you can change overnight. I am still trying to undo traits that my kids have picked up from me and others they’ve come into contact with. With anything in life, we can chip away at it slowly by changing ourselves. Work to implement better manners into your own routine. Think about what you say and how you say it. We are not perfect, I know this. Remember they are watching…always watching.