You Get What You Expect…. (Authoritative Parenting)

I will never forget one of the most memorable moments of my life with my late mother Katie Horne.  As you read this remember this… You always get what you expect when it comes to life and parenting. My memorable authoritative parenting / child moment story goes like this….

Katie Horne - Authoritative Parenting TipsI remember bringing all A’s and B’s home one day and showing my mom my report card.  I handed it to her as she sat in her brown lazy boy chair, she glanced at it for a moment, handed it back to me and said, “Good job baby.”  I stood there for a moment or two awaiting the jubilant celebration that I thought that this report card would bring. You know… a parade, a fighter jet air show and possibly a fireworks show. Definitely more than just a “Good job baby.”

I stood there for a minute and then I asked my mom, “Is that it?” She smiled,  looked up at me and said, “Baby, this is what you are supposed to do. You are supposed to bring home grades like these.” and went back to what she was doing. That was one of the best things that she could have ever done for me.

From that moment on I made it a point to work as hard as I could. I was not going to let her down. Why? Because I now knew that excelling was not a special occurrence.  It was what I was supposed to do.  I worked as hard as I could to give her what she expected. Wether you believe it or not your children are doing the same thing.  They are giving you what you expect. You are doing the same thing to yourself with your life and life situations.

Let me give you an example. What if you were walking down the street and a friend of yours or someone that you know ran up to you and shouted in excitement.


What would you think about that person? You would probably chuckle and say something like…”Uh…yeah…I do it every day. No big deal.” Wether you believe it or not this is also what you are doing with life.  There are things that you expect to happen and probably take for granted. They show up so easily and often that you take them for granted.   The reason they show up so easily and often is because you expect them to. They are supposed to show up. You are “supposed” to have running water. You are supposed to feel healthy. You are supposed to… It shows up because that is what you believe.

One of the best things that we do for our children, and one of the best things that you can do for your children is to set them up for success before every event, class or activity.

Here is what we do, before we take our son to Tae Kwan Do we talk about being focused in class. We talk about what we expect from him while he is in class and what we will expect from him at the end of class. We go over every situation that might be a challenge to reaching that expectation and we tell him how we expect him to handle that situation should it arise.  We do the same thing with our son who plays basketball and we will do the same thing with our daughter.

In addition to that, we make it a point to stay and watch their lessons and events as often as possible. That is the most important part of this equation.  At the start of any new class, event or activity we make it a point to be present. We stay and watch every lesson, every event, every… until we can see that the behavior matches the/our expectation.  We are talking about actually watching them throughout the entire event.  No sitting and checking Facebook, or Twitter or Instagram. :-) You would be surprised at how many times they check in with you visually when you are there. Then and only then, after we know that the expectation is being met, do we allow them to attend a class or two without us in attendance.  We set the expectation and our children always deliver. Always!

Your children are doing the same.

Authoritative Parenting Tip

How do you change or raise expectations you ask?

It really depends on the age of your children and the amount of time that you have invested in your current parent child dynamic. If you are making the change with teenage children your journey towards new expectations should be a gradual, but it should also be quick. You have less time to help them achieve their greatness. Here are the basic steps for both older and younger kids. The only difference is the speed of implementation.

  • First, you must get clear on what the new expectations will be.
  • Everyone (Parents/Grand Parents/Guardians) must be clear on the goal.
  • Expectations and consequences must be explained to the children before implementation.
  • The new rules and consequences must be carried out as explained. (No editing until after implementation. Our kids are “The Great Debaters” but we get to be the great judge.)
  • Loving words and actions must be shown in the in between moments as often as possible. (This is also key. Non-solicited you are really greats, I like how you dids and I am really proud of you at random times during the day are great confidence builders and will help your child reach the new expectations with ease.)
  • *For teens sometimes current friends will ask them to push back against the new rules and expectations. Always remember that they are not your children, but your children are and they want to please you. Give them an out. Allow them (your children) to blame you for anything that frustrates or puzzles their friends. This was a HUGE gift for me as a kid. Anytime I had to follow the rules and my friends were choosing not to I would say. “Guys it’s my mom. She will kill me if I do _____. She has this new “thing” and she really freaks out when I …. I like you guys and I would also like to be able to hang out with you after today. If I do “this” she might actually kill me (chuckle) and if not, she would probably not let me hang out anymore. I’m gonna head out. See you guys tomorrow.” Being given permission from her to blame her made not getting in trouble a piece of cake.

Try it. You will be very surprised at the results.


Parentpreneur – Who Is Raising Your Kids? – (Authoritative Parenting)

You had kids to be around them!

You had kids to raise them and to improve their lives with YOUR leadership and guidance, but you find that you spend about 2-3 hours a day with them during the week. You probably spend more time in your car on your morning and evening commutes than you do with your family. You work 40+ hours a week to afford the “luxury” of regretfully dropping your kids off at daycare or at the sitter’s. You find yourself longing for the day that you can just hang out with your children. You dream of taking them on an extended vacation or educational trip where you your whole family goes to India or Europe or Japan for a month just to see what the rest of the planet looks like, but let me share with you a secret. Unless you make it a must like Tony Robbins says. It will never happen….

So, for you… Is it a must that you spend time with your kids, or is it a should? Is it a must that you raise your children with your values, your standards, and your guidance, or is it a should?

For our family it was a must. We were what some would call successful in our various careers, but we barely saw our children. I remember driving an hour to work and an hour home, and hoping to see our first born for maybe thirty minutes before he had to go to bed. (Sound familiar to any of you?) My wife would do the same. We would see each other for maybe an hour or two a day and long for the weekends with the hopes that we could do something on the weekends, but more often than not we were so tired that we spent most of Saturday sleeping in and most of Sunday regretting going to work on Monday.

Meanwhile, our son would come home with all of these ideas that were not in alignment with our vision for his life. Lots of limiting ideas and lots of behavioral traits that where not in alignment with what our family would accept. So we decided to make a change. We decided to take massive action, as Tony says.

We spent many years sacrificing, living in places that were not our dream homes, going without things that we knew would impress the neighbors, or would make others see us as successful. We created our dream business: an amazing acting school that offers professional acting classes in Denver.  We did it during a time of major recession, when most people would say that you can’t build a business. We did it for our children, and we did it because it was a must. Our must was that we would be the ones who would raise our children.

We are now living our dream. As a parent, and especially a parent who falls into the authoritative parenting world, you must find a way to be with your child more than most parents do. Why? Because as we all know that if you don’t influence your children, someone else will.

The most influential person in your children’s life will be the one that they spend the most time with. Is that you? If not, you will want to examine your RPM.

  • What is the Result you are after?
  • What is the Purpose or reason for getting it? What is your WHY?
  • What is you Massive Action Plan?

Write down your answers to these questions – your RPM. The first two may come easily, while the third may take some serious work. There may be a lot of logistics involved, and you may need to figure it out with the input of other key players in your children’s lives. It may take years to implement, as ours did. However, if your Purpose, or Why, is strong enough for you – if it is a must – your mind will help you find a way.

Leave a comment below. Your children are waiting. :-)

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Your Kid Is Amazing At…

So you have a little one who is excelling at school, sports, or some other activity or area of study and you get the comment. You know… The Comment that many authoritative parents get…. “I wish my child was more like (……) She/He seams so focused and committed to her goal.” After your tenth or twelfth time of hearing this you have learned to say. “Thank you. It’s all her.” Deep down inside you know that this is not the case, but you know that that is the response that most people want to hear.

Authoritative Parenting, Parenting Tips, Parenting

More times than you can count you have been privy to the “Oh…I don’t want to push my child” or “He has to lead” or “She will find her own way.” retorts to your truthful “We direct her/him” response and you have no interest in going down that road again. So what do you do?

  • You make sure that you always know your audience. 

It is said that the wisest people take time to observe and know their audience. You don’t have investment conversations with your habitually financially challenged Uncle. You don’t discuss your gluten free diet with your Mc Donald’s loving friends, and you don’t discuss authoritative parenting with your friends who parent otherwise. As my mother would say…

“There are all different kinds of parenting. It all boils down to what you can stand.” – Katie H. 

  •  Associate with more like minded parents.

Birds of a feather flock together. No matter how hard you try. Your children will absorb the traits of their peers. So no matter how much you love Stephanie or Jaleesa, if their kids “Free Range” or “Self Guided” and are constantly out of control and that is not how you parent. Your interactions may need to be sans children.

  • Keep directing your kids the way that you feel best. They are your children and they are here in hopes that they will receive your continued direction. Don’t remove it for anyone.

My sons first preschool teacher gave us a bit of knowledge that confirmed our style of parenting for us. She said and I quote…(Roughly)

“Children are always testing boundaries. They are constantly wondering who is in charge. They really want to know that the answer is not them. They would love it if you would confirm that the answer is you through high expectations, firm boundaries, and discipline. Imagine how scary it would be for a two year old to feel like she was the one in charge of her scary world. That is what you do when you are not an authoritative parent. You abandon them to try to find their way in this world with little or no knowledge of how this world really works. Poor behavior is just fear of the unknown and a call for help.”

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