The WISE family fosters a sense of patience and acceptance of others. Our family has some pretty dramatically differing views of lots of things, from Apple vs. Android to work ethics, religious freedoms and terrorism. We have learned to be more tolerant of one another after 20+ years together, but it wasn’t always smooth sailing. We have had some “discussions” that left feelings bruised and values suffering. We have learned to encourage healthier “discussion” and an acceptance of one another as individuals as our children learn to figure out their own values and beliefs.
Not everyone believes the same way you do. There is so much “noise” in our family’s lives that finding space to figure out what you believe, without outside influence, is pretty tough. Just because you believe differently from someone else doesn’t mean one of you is wrong. Everyone has their own way of seeing things in their world.
A WISE approach is to allow others their own beliefs while holding your own strongly. But…Are your family values based on how you were raised? Sometimes our family values are based on the exact OPPOSITE of how we were raised! Sometimes families form values around what they think is the “right” way to grow a WISE family – and sometimes that “right” way doesn’t come from our hearts but from TV, YouTube, or celebrity “Super Moms”. Help guide your children in forming their own belief systems from a foundation of knowing and understanding your own family values.
There will be times when someone in your family will not budge on the belief he/she holds that’s very different from the rest of the family. There’s no absolute right or wrong way to handle this. It’s best to continue to talk with everyone involved in this situation without blaming or criticizing.
This holds for people in your family as well as people outside of your family. These differences may simply be a misunderstanding or they may be something that your family feels very strongly about. You decide how important it is to your family. There may be beliefs you decide are fundamental to your family. Then, when they go out into the world, help them see and practice the truth that everyone’s beliefs are important and accepted.
Your parent’s heart is full of wisdom – listen to it! Be Wise!