Written by: Shani Fowler
Is there a day goes by when there isn’t a picture of a celebrity splashed across the tabloids behaving badly? Bleary eyed pop stars stumbling out of nightclubs with the stability of Bambi on ice. Or a highly paid sports star furtively leaving a hotel with a mystery female, despite being married with children. It is frequently reported that these celebrities are bad role models for us and our children and they create a bad influence. Because they are in the public eye, celebrities are instantly considered to be influential to a wide audience and as such become role models. But they don’t necessarily intend to be one, and often they are not good ones. With their power comes responsibility, but all too frequently they don’t recognise their potential to impact on others. It isn’t someone’s actual job to be a role model, but someone’s job might cause them to become a role model to many people – it’s an elective process by others. So what makes a good role model?
What is a role model?
A good role model is someone who we can aspire to be. A person who possesses qualities we would like to have, someone we can look up to, who can motivate and influence us. A role model has a life we can relate to, showing us that we can achieve, even in the most adverse of situations. It doesn’t have to be a famous person, role models are all around us. Family and friends, teachers and work colleagues are our role models and in turn we can be theirs. You might be surprised how many people look up to you, admire you, or just how many people are actually influenced by who you are and what you do.
What Makes a Good Role Model?
A good role model is someone who can influence us in a positive way. As well as being kind and generous, they are people who have a clear set of values and have consideration of others. They are people who can lead us and advocate our goals and objectives provide the encouragement we need for our personal development. A good role model can demonstrate dedication and achievement but not at the cost of someone else, they have thought, understanding and respect for everyone else around them. However no one is perfect and a good role model is still a human and therefore can make errors of judgement, bad decisions or just plain old mistakes. A good role model should be able to admit mistakes, demonstrate how they put things right, once again offering a lead and a positive influence.
Who Has Role Models
We all are and have role models! Even the greatest inventors, discovers and pioneers have role models. There is always someone who inspired them, pushed them and encouraged them to break through the boundaries and drove them on.
Role Models to Our Children
Just as our parents were role models to us, we are to our children too, though at times we might not always feel like it, especially when we just seem to run around all day chasing our tails. But our children do see how we behave day in day out. They see us go to work and working hard in the home doing all the household chores. They can see us being there for them, loving them when they are sad, helping them when in need and being kind to them. They pick up on all this positive behaviour. It is exactly what children need but we are not exclusive to this role, so the more positive behaviour they see from us, hopefully the more likely they are to seek out other good role models.
There are many good and bad influences out there, but if we try to provide the best foundation of how we believe a person should be, try to inspire and guide, we can live in the hope that our children will select positive influences in their lives, the ones we might have chosen for them, or indeed ourselves.