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My daughter gave up the piano, but I don't regret it

D played the piano for a while in New York. After returning to China, he was attracted by seeing children playing drums in a shopping mall.

By testPublished 5 months ago 7 min read

At the beginning, she practiced both the drum set and the piano. Later, she communicated with us that she wanted to learn the drum set and give up the piano. Today, her drum kit sticks.

Every time I talk to my friends about this story, I will always sigh, how can you know what you want?


Are you really letting go?

How can children make good choices, this is a question I am often asked.

Before I answer that question, let me take the story of Little D and tell it to you in a different way.

Little D and I said, like the drum set. I told her, "Mom respects your opinion, and we can choose which instrument you want to play."

Small D considered and I said, I don't want to learn the piano.

I thought to myself that I had spent a lot of money on piano learning for several years. Besides, this boy said he liked playing drums today, but what if he wanted something else tomorrow?

So, I immediately persuasive, to her reason, adhere to the precious, let's adhere to good.

Little D agreed, and I smiled "lovingly", a good boy who knew how to make choices.

Small D did not agree, I immediately feel, how can the child "three days fishing two days sun net", no long, but also everywhere to ask others, how can let the child learn to adhere to...

Well, I don't know how many people will be embarrassed to smile, is not a familiar scene?

Sometimes when we say that children can't make choices, what we mean is that children don't make the choices we expect them to make.

Sometimes, when we say that children won't make their own choices, the truth is that every time they do, we intervene and end up reversing the outcome.

Of course, I don't think we should give our children the right to choose anything.

So before we talk about this, each parent needs to think for themselves, where can I "hold up"? This is where every family is different, not one size fits all.

For example, many parenting books say that it is up to the child to choose what clothes and shoes to wear. But if you are really thin-skinned and the neighbors love to comment on you, don't let your child choose. If your child is dressed in a disorderly manner, you will be in a state of discomfort for several days.

Like small D on the interest class this matter, I have a heart every time the class has a budget, in this range, even if the money is wasted, I also recognize, so I will let small D choose.

Draw the key point, we first clear, you can really let go to the child to do the range of choice, no choice, do not give the child to choose; Children choose, parents are likely to reverse the thing, also simply do not let the children choose.

Allow your child to make choices within the limits of "free choice." As long as this is done, the child will learn how to make choices, no matter how big or small.


Use 'WRAP' for major events

Of course, letting your child choose doesn't mean you don't do anything. Even if it is a small matter, we can communicate with our children and let them understand the logic of choice. This is to pass on our great wisdom to our children.

I'm used to using the WRAP decision-making process when it comes to big decisions, and it works for our kids as well.

Also take little D to give up learning the piano as an example, and share with you how we communicated at that time.

1, to Widen your options

You want to learn the drums instead of the piano. But what are the alternatives? Then I wrote down all the options that came to mind:

A. Give up the piano and take up the drum set

B. To learn both piano and drum set

C, piano to XX (jointly decided goal), then learn the drum set

Of course, these options may seem simple, but this discussion helps your child avoid narrow-mindedness and deliberately exercise a wider range of choices.

Gradually, the next time the child makes a choice, instead of tapping his head, he will ask himself: Are there any other options? If you don't choose this, what do you choose?

2. Reality test your assumptions from some common ideas.

With the ABCs listed, guide your child to visualize and evaluate the consequences of each option.

A: I like the drum set better. Every time I hear the rhythm of it, I am attracted by it. I think I like it better and I can learn it better.

B: That doesn't seem feasible. You see, we have extracurricular interest classes for two days a week. In the remaining three days, we have to learn two Musical Instruments, so we don't have time for sports.

C: That sounds OK. How about we finish the semester with piano lessons and then learn drum sets?

Of course, when the child is not clear, we can guide through the appropriate questions and express the idea.

To be honest, these assumptions are biased when it comes to "top", but that's okay. Even if it's an "emotional" choice, we know more about ourselves by making assumptions.

Then when we make choices in the future, even if they turn out badly, we won't regret it.

Because we know exactly how much we loved and would have done the same thing over again, we can move on faster than we can regret.

3, Attain short before've (cooling for a period of time to decide)

This is to avoid the "boss" impulse decision, generally speaking, after the pros and cons of the list, can give the child a buffer period:

Ok, so we've got these discussions down and we'll come back this time next week and see if we're still on the same page?

There are some choices that the child may not be interested in again, such as Little D's decision to buy certain toys (we also discuss those that are beyond our planned budget).

However, for some choices, the child may still stick to his decision, which in itself shows that the child really cares about this matter and has considered it clearly within the scope of her knowledge.

For example, we will talk about Little D's choice of drum kit a week later. She is still determined to learn. So we decided, after this semester of piano, we'd switch to drums.

I also often use the "10-10-10" rule for making my own decisions, though of course the kids are too young to use it. But this rule has helped me to let go and respect little D's choices.

10 minutes later, how do I feel about Little D's decision not to learn the piano? What about 10 months from now? What about 10 years from now?

I don't expect little D to become famous and have a family, per se. I just want her to have a love of music. In that case, what is learning not learning?

A lot of problems in the longer time dimension, really opened up.

4. Prepare to be wrong.

Last but not least, this does not apply to Little D, who does not yet have a "rainy day" mentality.

But for my own choices, after I make them, I think: what if I make the wrong choice? Decide on a "stop" to help minimize "sunk costs" and re-choose in time.

Similarly, I asked myself the same question after D gave up on the piano. My stop loss point was to prepare for the fact that D eventually didn't like the drum set and stopped playing the piano. All that money was wasted.

I was pretty sure I was okay with this, for three reasons.

First of all, I have always had the principle of never exceeding my budget to enroll little D in the interest class. When I paid for it, I was ready to spend the money without any use.

Secondly, as for the choice of musical instrument, drum set is only the second musical instrument she comes into contact with. Essentially, I don't believe in "love at first sight". People need to contact several instruments to really know their "favorite".

Finally, Little D can play music on the piano, has good rhythm and musical sense, and likes singing very much. These preliminary music hobbies have been formed. Even if I don't learn the last two instruments, then I also believe that it is just a "pause", and there will be a chance to continue in the future, even if it is not these two instruments.

So you see, this WRAP model, it's great for kids to guide, and it also helps us sort through our thoughts.

I respect Little D's choice, and I hope to let her know that there is no "best choice" in life, and to choose well is actually to "enjoy the process". I will not worry about gains and losses before making the choice, and I will not regret after making the choice.

After all, we don't need to live the life that others think is "good"; we just need to live the life that we "want" to live.

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