25: Own it! – Teaching Your Kids Personal Responsibility

Because if you don’t teach your kids personal responsibility, who will?

Listen to this episode on iTunes or Stitcher, or in the player below:

In this episode we’re talking about personal responsibility, specifically what it’s like teaching it – instilling it – in our kids.

This is important stuff for all families, but what makes it vital for big families is that we as parents simply have less time to devote to teaching specific skills to specific kids, right? Well, let’s not get too pessimistic – in a lot of ways, families with many children have more opportunities to instill the values of discipline, accountability, and sacrifice that create a responsible person.

Here’s what we discuss in the show…

  • How the opposite of personal responsibility is entitlement.
  • Why teaching personal responsibility is necessary.
  • How to get your older kids involved with helping with the younger ones, without turning them into surrogate parents.
  • The importance of not becoming too lax with the younger kids as the Empty Nest gets closer and closer. (Spoiler alert: As parents of mostly young children, Bobby and I are very aware this will be a big challenge for us in the next 10-15 years!)
  • Some specific examples of how the Osbornes and Ehrhardts both get our kids involved with specific chores – not just for the sake of “helping out,” but for the sake of learning accountability (sometimes through sad consequences).
  • We also share 3 takeaways on how we can all up our instilling-personal-responsibility game. (Check around the 36:30 mark.)

Post-show notes and resources:

  • The bible verse I referred to is from Luke 12:48 – “Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more.” Props to the scholars who inevitably laughed as Bobby and I stumbled our way through this and the Spiderman quote!
  • We brought up the value of knowing Personality Styles (again) and referred to our show with Chris LoCurto.
  • The music we used during Bobby’s chat with Ava is from artist The Tinkerbell Effect, and can be found on Soundcloud here.
  • qbqQBQ? Yep, that’s what we said on the show. QBQ stands for the “Question Behind the Question.” It’s a concept and short-but-powerful book from author John Miller. Only get this book if you’re ready to shift some of your own thinking about what you’re responsible for in your life: family, work, or otherwise.
    • From the book’s description:

      The lack of personal accountability has resulted in an epidemic of blame, complaining, and procrastination. No organization-or individual-can achieve goals, compete in the marketplace, fulfill a vision, or develop people and teams without personal accountability.The solution involves an entirely new approach.

      We can no longer ask, “Who dropped the ball?” “Why can’t they do their work properly?” or “Why do we have to go through all these changes?” Instead, every individual has to ask the question behind the question: “How can I improve this situation?” “What can I contribute?” or “How can I make a difference?”

    • Miller also wrote a sister book for raising your kids to be more personally accountable called, “Parenting the QBQ Way.”

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Image from Flickr user Kristopher Volkman, CC 2.0.
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