“Legacy is not leaving something for people; it is leaving something in people.” Peter Strople
I attended an award that was organized by a family friend for his customers and staff over the weekend. He is a baker, and he owns fully mechanized bakeries all over Lagos state, Nigeria. His brand is so fantastic that a chef from Europe went over to see his processes after tasting his wonderful bread. In the course of the event, he shared his experience growing up with parents that taught him how to bake, mend, sew, fix furniture, etc. He said he felt that his dad was mean and was too hard on them. However, looking back today, he owes his success story to the legacy his parents bestowed through their actions and hard work.
Baking is a hobby that runs in the family, even his sister loves baking! None of them parted with the processes and recipes handed down to them by their parents; rather they are improving on them and becoming better every day. The interesting part of the story is, apart from his wife working with him full time, his children (not older than 15 years) have also been working gladly with them at the bakery on weekends and have started earning commissions.
I’m sharing the above inspiring story because we live in a country where working to keep the family afloat has taken over family bonding time. First and foremost, I must say kudos to employed parents that can still sacrifice time to be with their families. Some parents have delegated the responsibility of their children’s upbringing to their domestic staff whose background they do not know. This week, I want to implore us to make time out of our busy schedule to teach our children an important skill that we possess. This doesn’t mean that what we teach them will become relevant to their careers later in life, but it will build their confidence, and become part of their lives’ experience.
Teach your children to cook tasty meals (I’m sure you have seen children’s cooking competitions on TV).
Teach them to weed the flower pots and water the plants.
Teach them to sing if you can sing, throw in a few dance steps too if you are a stepper.
Teach them to feed the pet, poultry, fish, etc.
Don’t let your domestic staff do it all because the domestic staff will come out better while your children become inept at little tasks. Don’t be like, “Children are so sharp these days that I often wonder where they discover all they know from”. Be their first teacher, don’t leave your children to discover everything on their own; they may discover “other things” that will put them, their future and the immediate environment in jeopardy too.
If you are an entrepreneur, take your children to your office occasionally let them learn what you do to make a living, this will broaden their horizon. If your child wants to be a fireman, schedule a visit to a fire station one weekend (it is very easy, really) and let him have a tour around the facility. This will either reinforce his thinking or make him think twice (which is hardly the case when they are young anyway).
Imagine when you are old and your children are proud to say dad/mom taught me this, taught me that and here I am today. How proud do you think you will be?