Be above the mix…

This past week, I had one of those moments where the most random thing just sparked an idea that I couldn’t shake.  “You need to be above the mix…”  I heard this in two different episodes of one of our favorite new shows, Empire.  Both times she was listening to a new track, and this was her suggestion, “be above the mix,” “Don’t hide behind the music.”

I just keep thinking of this in real life.  So many times in life we hide behind, what we want others to see and hear.  We are scared to stand out and be different.  To some comparing life to music production and songs, won’t make any sense, to others it’s going to click like it did for me.  When you listen to a number of today’s top songs, you will hear a lot of the same beats, you will hear the beats better than the lyrics, you hear words not lines.  Today songs come out, many sound the same, sale incredibly great, but the meaning is not there.  Songs are made to give people what they want to hear, they give that great beat to move to.

Many of us live our lives this exact same way.  We hide behind what we know others want to see or hear, we spend so much time doing what others want, we forget ourselves.  It’s the people who step up,  go above the mix, those that let their voice be heard, that speak clearly and with meaning and purpose, that are remembered.  These are the people who make a difference.

Are you willing to be above the mix and not hide behind the idea of who you are, but truly be you?  Are you willing to be the parent that says, my kid isn’t going to do that or I’m a parent not a friend?  Are you willing to be that husband that actually listens to his wife, that does the laundry and the dishes to give your wife a break?  Are you willing to be that friend, that slaps your best friend back to reality when they are just being plain stupid?  Are you willing to be that student, that stops the bully, that sets the example for the rest of the team, for the rest of the class?

Take just one day, and put yourself above the mix, put yourself above where others think you should be, and then prove why you should be there.  If you’re stuck in a hole, is up to you to grab the rope.  If your voice is far below the drum machine and the bass, you have to choose to move that fader up.  Others can put the equipment there, others can help only as much as you let them.  It is up to you to make the call to get it moving.

Have we failed them?

When it comes to our kids, I know that any of us would do anything for them.  We try to protect them in every way that we can, we try to give them a better life than we had.  In doing so, we have raised a generation of wimpy vultures.  Bullies today are not the same as bullies back in the day.  Back when I was in school if having to deal with a bully, it stopped at the end of the school day, and it was one maybe two people.  Now, you have groups of “mean kids”, that will pick on kids at school and then it becomes cyber bully time.  It no longer stops, even the kids that aren’t bullies at school become bullies behind a keyboard.  We all know that kids can be mean, and we also know that kids discover these behaviors from somewhere.

That is why no matter how much you want to blame the schools, the administration, coaches, etc., it starts at home.  Parents we need to be involved with our kids.  We need to be in our kids lives, not just being around, not just running them to their events, but truly involved.  We need to know who their friends are, we need to know what they are doing when they are out.  We also need to know who and what they are online.  With the illusion that our kids need to be themselves, and that they need to have their privacy, so that they are free to be themselves, we lose our kids to the world.  When as parents, we lose touch with our kids, or we excuse ourselves from their life, we have no right to blame others for what our kids do or don’t do.  Now don’t think that I’m saying to go read your kids diary or journal, but we do need to know what is going on in their lives.  Spend time talking to them, they aren’t going to be excited about this, but communication is key.

At the end of the day, our kids take after us. If we don’t parent our children, how can we ask others to do so.  We have to set a proper example for our children in all that we do.  If you find yourself always posting negative comments online, especially when it has nothing to actually do with you, or you never have anything very positive to say about anything, you might be encouraging your child to be a bully, both online and in real life.  If you are talking about things with your kids, and setting a proper example, maybe we can stop some of this senseless violence, bullying, and suicide among young people in our world.

Kids say the darndest things…

It’s very true that our kids say the darndest, most brutally honest things, they get it from somewhere.  Everything our kids do, they have learned it some place, from someone, somehow.  A number of the things that they pick up, we don’t really mind, but it isn’t always the good things they pick up on.

Our kids look to us for what to do in social interactions and in all situations.  Face it, you talk to your friends and co-workers completely different than you do around your house with your family and children, well maybe.  None of us really think about some of the things we say or do, until they are repeated or done by our kids.  There are so many kid’s today that are constantly in trouble, either at school or even the police, because of poor guidance or honestly a lack there of.

We have to guide our kids in the right ways try our hardest to keep them from doing just really stupid things.  I mean yes there is a fine line from being an over-protective parent, a controlling parent, and a crazy, but that is part of being a parent.  Face it, as a parent you are to be a parent not your child’s friend.  Now don’t get me wrong, you need to be there for your children, but being the cool parent, isn’t always going to be the best thing for your kids.  Now I’m not saying that I’m “World’s Greatest Dad” and should teach classes on how to be a father, but sometimes you go somewhere and you just think – I’m not doing so bad a am I…

We all have seen the kids, that make you think I wish they were your kid, or make you want to slap their momma.  Pushing your kids to be respectful to others is one thing, but more than that, we have to push our kids to respect themselves.  Too many kids today are “depressed” but are so privileged they don’t know what to do with themselves.  We have pushed to far into the “everyone did great”, and the everyone gets a trophy mentality that there is no winner.  This is where the problem comes along when these kids grow up and become part of “the real world,”  if something isn’t handed to them, they don’t know what to do.

Let’s push our kids to respect themselves and others.  Let’s push to break our kids of these entitled attitudes.  Start the push from within yourself.  Let you kids see you working hard for what you have and what your family has, teach them the value of money, time, love, and true friendship.  Let’s see our kids change the direction of their generation and our world.