Strong-willed. Stubborn. Spirited. Wild child. Fiery. Free Spirit. Marches to their own beat. There’s so many other words and phrases I could use to describe the incredible nature that is the strong-willed child. You will love them, admire them, get frustrated with them, underestimate them, fight with them, appreciate them, respect them, and so much more. And yet, you have to keep feeding that flame, you can’t squander it. You have to allow that fire to grow. The fire that makes them who they are. The fire that will get them so far in life. How do you think all of the great leaders achieved all they have? They’re the go getters. The wild ones. The ones who don’t follow each rule and who push back when they don’t agree. The ones who question everything and pave their own way. The ones who don’t conform to “normal.” They change the world. They make a difference.
I know it’s hard – trust me, I really do. I know some days you want to rip your hair out because you’re so frustrated and discouraged. I know some days you question if you’re doing what you’re supposed to in parenting them. I know some days you contemplate tossing them out the window – don’t lie, you know you have. I know some days you hide in the bathroom just for a break from the bossiness. But I also know that you have all the equipment you need to raise that amazing child. I know you sometimes lay awake at night wondering who they’ll be when they get older. I know sometimes you wonder if you’re a strong enough mom for them. I know sometimes you just sit and watch them because you’re in awe of the person they are at such a young age. I know you get defensive when the person at the grocery store makes the “Oh you’re in trouble” or “They’re a troublemaker” comment, because you know you’re not in trouble. You know that even in the midst of the toughest and most challenging days that your sweet baby while yes, very strong-willed is so wonderful and capable and is going to turn into the most incredible adult. (Once you survive the teen years, that is.)
At the end of the day, all you can do is embrace the persistence and determination within your child. It will serve them extremely well in the future. Perseverance. Willpower. Tenacity. Drive. These are all words that could be used to describe great leaders, the world changers, and our strong-willed child. The world needs people like this. The world needs children like this. The strong-willed ones are the ones capable of changing the world. Let them.
I’m going to leave you with this quote from the late Steve Jobs.
Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.