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11 Reasons Why You Should Admire Naughty Kids

11 Reasons Why You Should Admire Naughty Kids

They can be loud, obnoxious and insistent on getting their own way. Or they are sly, devious and untrustworthy. Naughty kids are worth avoiding.

Or are they?

While exhausted parents may dream of the day their kids become beautifully behaved, would you really want Stepford Kids?  Would you not miss out on some of the most determined, entrepreneurial and sensitive people you’ll have the opportunity to meet.

And think about it. Were you always perfectly behaved when you were a kid? Or even now? Do you sometimes still get angry, have a tantrum or dig your heels in? Do you ever give up when the going gets tough or refuse to eat food that you think looks disgusting? Are you ever rude or impatient?

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These kids are normal human beings, just like you. And some of those “naughty” traits might just turn out to be early signs of leadership when they are older. Here’s how:

1. They are independent

All too often, ‘naughty’ is a word we use for kids who think for themselves. While conformity is admired at school, our greatest entrepreneurs, scientists and artists do things their own way. Often, the qualities of these kids is not appreciated until much later in life, when their ability to think for themselves and make things happen drives their success. Think of Richard Branson, Albert Einsten and Lady Gaga, all of whom ‘failed’ at school.

2. They are creative

Naughty kids don’t just think for themselves, they often think differently from others. Their creativity cannot be curbed. While adults get told to ‘think out of the box’ these kids have never been in the box in the first place.

3. They are sensitive

Often the most sensitive kids are the ones who are written off as naughty. They can’t stand pain or injustice, and so kick off into a tantrum when they see it. In little children, this is often on their own behalf. As they grow up, and their ability to empathize develops, their sensitivity can lead to deep acts of generosity towards others in need.

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4. They have conviction

Great world-changing leaders, Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Aung Sang Suu Kyi, could not be described as easy people. Awkward and opinionated may be a fairer description. But they lived with conviction and determination, fighting injustice despite imprisonment and persecution, and toppled despotic regimes as a result. It’s not quite as inspiring when the ‘despotic regime’ is actually a parent wanting to get their child to eat their vegetables!

5. They are strong

Human beings are social animals. Having the willpower to stand up to social pressures is impressive. Kids who go against the grain, dressing differently, following their own interests and speaking their mind are demonstrating courage and strength. In their teen years, when separation from parental control is normal, being downright rude and obnoxious can be a way of subconsciously driving that separation, while proving to the kids that they still have the safety of their parents love.

6. They want to be understood

Kids often get loud or have a tantrum when they feel disrespected or unheard. Although this may not be the most constructive way to get their point across, these kids have found a way to communicate their wants, something many of us have subsumed to the demands of other people (including those same kids!). Often, children will calm down if they feel you’ve understood them, even if the answer is still “no.”

7. They say what is on their mind

We’ve all had those moments when a child has said exactly what they are thinking, probably at the top of their voices. They tell relatives when they don’t like the expensive present they’ve been given. They point and stare at people with visible disabilities.  Rude though these comments may be, your kid’s directness is often meant as honesty without malice. They don’t intend to hurt anyone’s feelings. They are curious, rather than judgmental, about people who are different. What is more, they will speak the truths that everyone else is thinking but no-one else has the honesty to voice.

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8. They have energy

Although they may seem far more angelic when they sleep, your kid’s energy is admirable. It is the energy of athletes, adventurers and leaders. Like puppies, your kids may need to be given opportunities (both physical and mental) to burn off their energy. That exercise will develop their capacity and their ability to control themselves.

9. They are ambitious

Have you ever had a picture in your head, but when you try to draw it, it looks nothing like your ideal? Your kids haven’t yet learned that this is normal. They haven’t yet learned to cope with the frustration. The resulting tantrum is an expression of the gap between the quality of their original vision and their inability to perfectly realize that vision. It demonstrates ambition and discernment.

10. They are scientists

Kids (like the rest of us) learn by doing. They are great problem solvers, full of cunning and resourcefulness. They learn by trying something and seeing what happens. Naughty kids are just trying stuff out. Loud, destructive, difficult stuff, perhaps. But that is how they learn what works and what doesn’t. And that is how they also discover that you, their parents, still love them, even if they are naughty. Because…

11. They are lovable

Your kids are a part of you, while also being completely themselves. One reason it feels tough when they are naughty is that you love them so much. You want them to succeed. You want them to be appreciated by others. You want them to be happy.

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So remember, being good all the time would only hold them back. And you wouldn’t want that, would you?

Featured photo credit: Philip Dean via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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