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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
We parents experience such a thrill when our kids show aptitude. Wow, he scored a goal in pee-wee soccer? Onto the World Cup! Oh, look at the color choices in this finger painting. Watch out, Museum of Modern Art! Sure, we'd all like our kids to become rich and famous and take care of us in our old age. On the other hand, we want our children to become functional adults who don't need therapy three times a week. How can we reconcile the two and raise children who are happy and successful?
Jim Taylor acknowledges that our society's emphasis on wealth and social status "is often at odds with experiencing satisfaction, contentment and happiness." His goal is teaching parents to raise successful achievers -- people with high self-esteem who are accountable for their actions and maintain mastery of their emotions. In order to get our kids off the couch and away from their video games in the first place, we must set high expectations for them, push them beyond what they think they're capable of. But we must do it positively and with love. Taylor warns us, in the form of "red flags," about the many ways that we end up sending detrimental messages to children about their self-worth. Without the foundation of a secure parental relationship, "high-performers" are only going through the motions of their chosen "achieving activity" and will eventually rebel.
Positive Pushing will certainly benefit parents whose children are already demonstrating talent in athletics, the arts, or academics. But even those who want nothing more than for their child to grow up and find a job that suits them will find wisdom in the cautionary tales of parents who take their children's successes and failures too personally. Taylor delves deeply into the psyche of high achievers to provide insight and strategy to parents who want to motivate their children to excellence -- and happiness. (Jessica Leigh Lebos)