Successful Kids Must Be Happy

1_KidWhen it comes to raising kids, parents want success for their little ones. We want them to do well in school. We want them to excel on the court. We want them to choose terrific friends. In essence we want our kids to be successful, in the future as well as today.

But, why? What is it that makes us desire success for our children? Why do we want them to go to college? Why do we want them to win the championships? Why do we want their friends to be loving and caring? Because we want them to be happy. We assume that if our children are successful, that they will automatically be happy.

The truth is, that’s not the case. There are many adults as well as young people who have attained “success,” but aren’t happy. They may be famous, have achieved goals, own huge houses, have loads of money, but if they are unhappy, can we really call that “success?”

We parents need to be careful when we try to help our children reach “success,” because if we do it in a way that doesn’t allow for them to be happy, then is it really success? Not by my definition.

Here are three quick and easy ways to raise happy, successful children:

1. Help Them Discover Their Passions

Passions are what our kids love, what they get out of bed for, but with so many distractions like NetFlix, iPhones, and 300 cable channels, many kids are too distracted to look within to discover what drives them. So, help them find it. Ask questions, “What do yo think about photography?” and make suggestions, “Have you ever considered playing water polo?” Search until you find a ringer.

2. Give Them Opportunities

Once you have found your child’s passion, give her opportunities to build it into a strength. Check out books. Watch videos and movies on the subject. Have her join a team or club. Go to the store together to gather supplies. Find an app that will let her explore it.

3. Do It Together

A family that plays together, stays together. So, learn more about your child’s passion along with him. Have him teach you about it. Try it yourself. He likes magic? Have him do a show for you and ask if he wants to teach you how to do a trick. He’s planning on joining the basketball team? See if he can show you how to make a free throw, or maybe watch the play-offs together.

When your child finds their passion, strengthens it and shares it with you, success comes, and with that success they will also find confidence. With confidence a child can’t help but to hold his head a little higher and walk a little straighter. That’s a happy child. And, what does that do for you? Well, that’s a proud parent!

Written by: Leon Scott Baxter, Founder of


About the Author

Leon Scott Baxter is the founder of and the author of four books, the latest titled “Secrets of Safety-Net Parenting.” He is an elementary school teacher, the father of two girls (11 and 15) and has been married to his college sweetheart since 1992.

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