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Courage, Curiosity, and Life-Long Success

As parents, we’re naturally driven to find the competitive edge for our children. We’re constantly reminded of the fact that the workforce is fluid, getting ever more competitive, and there’s no sympathy for those who can’t keep up. So we fawn over test scores, agonize over the best schools and programs. We drive our children to perform.

We just want what’s best for them, but the results are far from positive. Instead of success, we’re pushing our children to increased levels of depression, anxiety, and the breakdown of their relationships.

We want the best for our kids, but what if we aren’t looking for the right things?

 

Click here to discover how to choose the right high school for your teen. 

 

Of course it’s important to expose our children to as much information and experience as possible. Education is a notable defense against manipulation and mistreatment. It’s the foundation upon which economic stability can be built. But is it enough to secure our children’s success?

And really, what is success?

What is success? Success is more than money. As a matter of fact, it’s hard to pin down. It’s a little different for everyone. Therefore, really, success is the freedom of mind to create success for yourself as you define it.

That’s a little hard to imagine.

Traditionally, success has been defined by society. Get a job. Buy a house. Start a family. But today, as the world around us becomes increasingly fluid and both options and responsibilities grow and change at break-neck speed, the ability to define and manifest one’s own definition of success is the ultimate measure of success.

The ability to define success in an insecure world is a function of two attributes: courage and curiosity. Success depends on both.

Curiosity. Innovation is the highest currency of today’s economy. But there can be no innovation without curiosity.

Curiosity is the insatiable drive to find answers. There is a difference between solutions and answers. A solution may address the observable result of a problem, but the solution is the end of the road until another problem arises. Conversely, one who seeks answers seeks to understand a problem to the fullest.

Curiosity drives Waldorf graduates to observe, investigate, and understand on a deep level, driving innovation and long-term progress.

In industry, curiosity is the catalyst of systemic growth. Which is to say, curious individuals who continually seek answers and understanding instead of settling on solutions help move entire industries to keep up with changes in the world around them. It’s what makes start-ups rise to the top of the heap in years or even months, and it’s what keeps established organizations from drowning in the torrential sea of change.

Curiosity is important, but what is curiosity without the courage to seek answers and challenge current systems?

Courage. All the skill in the world is useless to the wielder without courage. Without the courage to ask the hard questions, find the answers, present those answers, break out of the mold and challenge the status quo, ability cannot manifest into results.

Courage in leadership is vital to any team or organization. And courageous leadership looks different today. Where being a courageous leader once meant the ability to establish and maintain oneself at the top of a dog-eat-dog pack, today it means empowering everyone to lead with their best skills forward.

An impactful leader isn’t the one who claws their way to the top, it’s the one everyone turns to for advice. It’s the person everyone trusts and relies on. It’s the one who takes the best ideas from all over the organization and weaves them together into the next big thing. All while keeping morale and communication high.

Yes, curiosity and courage are integral component of life-long success. So how do we make sure to develop these in our children.

We don’t have to develop it; we have to protect it.

Waldorf educators believe that every child comes into the world with curiosity and the courage to follow it. We know that when encouraged to follow their curiosity and rewarded for sharing what they’ve learned, children grow into adults who lead fearlessly, define their needs and those of the people who depend on them, and endeavor to succeed in all aspects of their life.

High school is an important time in your teen’s development and preparation for a successful future.

Click here to discover how to choose the right high school for your teen. 

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