I heard Jimi Tewe say fear is learned and not part of our make up…my mom also said something along that line…according to her we all came out bold and fearless, but as parents, when we start telling a child don’t do this cos this, don’t say this, stop that, or scream at them; when they are being inquisitive/curious because of our own fear of them being hurt, we instill fear in them and teach them limitations, if over-done a child can start second-guessing his/her every move thereby being unsure in most things.
I started noticing my children were getting scared of virtually everything and I realized I needed to shape up…I took the form of storytelling with the whole works (bringing the stories to life with facial expression, scream and shout e.t.c) and gradually the tide is turning in our favor.
I relate bible stories to everyday life and them, gradually we are moving from fear…I try not to scream when they are playing with something dangerous or harmful but to firmly explain… my inquisitive second daughter will want to test out your claims to know if she can get away with it…so she needs more explanation and practical stories but in all we are getting there and God’s wisdom is ever abundant to them.
Casting down imaginations and everything/everyone… I out rightly tell them that is not true; when adults want to correct them by using a phantom character to scare them straight…there is no ojuju and police will not shoot you… what’s up with that anyway…if you do not stop crying, I will tell police to come and carry you, ojuju will come and eat you if…blablabla…why not explain simply and give the child reasons why he/she has to take those steps; easier said than done right…some children will not behave unless you scare them like that, I know…but is the far-reaching consequence of teaching fear and building it in our children’s mind thereby raising limited mindset adults… better than few seconds of ‘peace and quiet?’
I told them even if there was anything, Jesus is always with you and just like David and the big Goliath; you can win every big thing that comes your way because Jesus will help you…It did sink in I believe because I heard Tori saying Jesus will help me and I will beat it, when Nuggie told her a giant was coming while they were playing…
Nuggie also changed her poem to: Goliath Goliath,
Goliath has a tail,
He has a big head and
A very small waist… (If that will make her get the idea, whom I to complain…LOL)
Whenever I see them scared of anything, ant, darkness, even people e.t.c. I refer to the stories and remind them about the character’s courage. Sometimes we stand there till the fear of that thing is dissolved and I convince them to touch or do that thing they are afraid of doing.
They now leave their bed at night in darkness to our room rather than screaming Daddy/Mummy! in fear which was their former reaction. Yesterday, something happened at different times and they both said “Mummy we were not scared” and that was music to my ears. There should know there will be obstacles and things that may try to hinder them but they are equal to the task, whatever it may be.
I still counter all the ojuju, police, soldier, e.t.c stories; I will continue to counter it, to make sure any new cobweb is cleared… putting action behind what I tell them to declare everyday…
I am bold! Courageous! Confident!
How have you been able to build courage and boldness in your children…your method can help a child you know…