Become a Better Role Model
People who dream of something bigger and better are good role models.
- Andrew Shue
Perhaps you were lucky enough as a young person to have had a great man or woman in your life who you could watch and learn from. But sometimes, young people are not that fortunate. All children, girls and boys alike, can benefit enormously from having a strong, interesting woman as a role model in their lives.
Now that you are an adult, why not strive to become that person yourself for some young person? If you take the time to reflect on any of the role models you have, you will recognize a common thread running through them all: they are confident in their own skin.
Whether they are / were a mom or dad, a CEO, or an English teacher, those people embraced their own lives and express their true selves in the process. And, you are able to do those same things. When you are able to accept yourself for who you are, from your strong points to all of your little idiosyncrasies, you then free yourself to become the person you most want to be.
How do you become a better role model?
1. Know thyself… well. Know who you are. If you allow your own true self to emerge, others will notice that you are genuine and will be drawn to you. When you avoid putting on airs, people become more comfortable around you. Plus, they are themselves less likely to put up a facade in your presence.
2. Step into it. Be brave enough to show the world who you are. To piggy-back onto the idea in the suggestion above, those people who lack confidence usually fear showing others who they really are. Demonstrate your confidence by letting people see and get to know the “real” you.
3. Express yourself through your appearance. The bottom line is that our appearance is only a reflection of who we are. Although how you look isn’t the whole picture, it surely does complete the image. Let your inner self be represented in your outward appearance.
4. Listen well. One of the most powerful and useful behaviors you can model for other people is to pay attention and listen well to others. Developing the skill of listening is a lifelong process. Be assured that modeling this skill, especially for young people is a huge contribution to their development.
5. Step up and speak up. When necessary, stand up for something that is important to you or that you believe will make the world a better place. Speaking up just means that you express your thoughts in ways that people can best hear them. You demonstrate how to use a non-threatening tone and maintaining engaging language.
6. Avoid criticizing others. Learn and demonstrate positive ways to provide feedback so that your comments do not come across as harsh or personal criticisms.
7. Step back. Let it be. Do your best to refrain from becoming involved in negative conversations and situations. Consider these events a waste of your time, as they almost always are. You only get a certain number of minutes in a day. Why would you want to spend any of yours on negativity?
8. Love. Show love freely. Demonstrating that you care about other people and the world in general is a wonderful quality and a great example for those you mentor.
9. Do your own thing. Reveal your innermost self. Do you love to cook, dance, and work with numbers? Then pursue all three. Immerse yourself in whatever excites you. When you feel great about yourself, you experience the freedom to participate in life in ways that will continue to increase your enthusiasm for it.
When you do these things, you will not only be living your life to its fullest potential, You will also provide every person you encounter with a fascinating, approachable role model. You will give them a lot to think about now and equip them with skills for a better life later on.
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