I think we parents have a tendency to worry that our children will be or are lazy if they don’t do all the things we think they should be doing. BUT, are they truly lazy—or is it just that they are not embracing our ideas of what they ought to be doing with their time? Is it really just a matter of them not caring about what we care about? Or should we be worried about their motivation and activity level?
I find that my kids can get pretty motivated—get out of bed early, work long hours, and stay focused—on activities that they care about and choose. It is the ones I choose for them that they appear to be “lazy” with. This leads me to realize that they are probably not actually lazy, but just not interested; they just don’t really care about the activities and issues that I think they should but when they choose their own passions, they have plenty of motivation!
Have you ever noticed how it can be so tough to get your child out of bed during the week to get off to school, despite having him get to bed plenty early enough the night before—only to find that on Saturday morning he is up early and raring to go? Of course on Saturday, he gets to do the things he enjoys and activities of his own choosing.
I think this reality/possibility is one of the main reasons that we parents should refrain from labeling our children as “lazy”—a label that can stick and have a negative affect on a person’s self-esteem and self concept. After all, think of your own energy and motivation levels—don’t you work much harder at things you really care about than things you don’t? Maybe our job as parents is not to lambast our children for their slacker-ness or laziness, but to help them find the activities, issues, causes, and interests that they really care about—then the laziness issue may just take care of itself.
Also: A Lazy Day to Do Nothing