I believe in being a good role model. Little kids grow up imitating the older and prominent people in their life. The little kids think that the grown-ups are always doing the right thing so they want to act like them. If that person is a bad influence then the child will most likely grow up to be a bad influence on the next generation etc. I love little kids and babies. They are all cute in their own way and full of innocence, just wanting to learn. They learn how to talk and walk by imitating. Toddlers love it when you imitate them, maybe because they are used to imitating you so it’s fun to be on the other side.
I was in kindergarten when my brother Sam was born. When my relatives would visit they would tell me to be a good role model so he would grow-up ok. Being in kindergarten I didn’t understand that. I wasn’t used to someone copying me. Soon I saw him following me and trying to do what I did. At first I didn’t like it. I thought “Who needs a little brother tagging along, ruining all the fun?” I was mad and sad.
So then I thought about it. I thought about how I loved him and wanted him to do well in life. I knew that he would imitate someone and I didn’t know if that person would be a good influence. I did know that I could be a good role model for him. So after that I made sure to be a great influence around him.
Unfortunately after he discovered fighting cartoon shows they became his main role model so I refuse be held accountable for the things he does. But sometimes I see him do things I teach him and that makes me feel good inside. Being a good role model is not just sometimes for a certain person, it should be for always with everyone because people never stop learning from others.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.