Tell a young person what to do - play fair, be yourself, stick to the task at hand - and most will tune you out. But show them how choices and consequences play out in the real world, with real people, and the impact will be far more effective and long-lasting. Based on interviews with over 100 people from around the world and from all walks of life as they reflect on their most profound and unexpected moments of clarity about who they are and how they should treat others. The lessons help teach 23 powerful character traits that will help your child grow into the adult you'll be proud to call your own.
Character Traits from Parenting with a Story: ambition, open-mindedness, creativity, curiosity & learning, courage, integrity, self-reliance, grit, hard work, self-confidence, money & delayed gratification, health, positive mental attitude, dealing with loss, kindness, patience, fairness & justice, humility, respect for others, friendship, social intelligence, forgiveness & gratitude, appreciation of beauty.
Father Behind “Jordan’s Law” Speaks Out
I pushed my way through these kids, and ran over to the ambulance. In the back of the ambulance was my son, Jordan. He was partially conscious and covered in blood. . . The paramedic said he had internal bleeding and had to go to the hospital immediately. . . I jumped out of the ambulance and started asking, ‘What happened? What happened? What happened?’
Jordan Peisner after attack. December, 2016. KABC-TV.
“And that’s when some of the kids ran up to me and said, ‘Look!’ And they showed me a video. It was of my son talking to a friend. And from behind comes this boy, who swings with all his might at my son’s head, and knocks him out. The sound still gives me chills. And down he goes, to the ground. And then you see kids running over — as my son is on the ground, eyes rolled back, and bleeding — and these kids are jockeying for position to take pictures.”
Those are the words of Ed Peisner as he describes what happened to his 14-year-old son Jordan in December of 2016. In what was probably a game of “knockout”, the assailant had planned the attack with accomplices at the ready with cell phone cameras to videotape the shocking event all to generate likes and shares on social media.
And while the attack was obviously criminal, the social media profiteering from it was not. Ed realized that unless someone figured out a way to remove the social media incentive, these horrific acts would continue. And so he did. Ed founded the Organization for Social Media Safety. And together with Marc Berkman, they began lobbying for legal reform.
In one of their first victories, what’s now known as “Jordan’s Law” was passed in the State of California — the first law targeting social-media motivated violence. That law states that if you coordinate with someone to video tape their violent attack and post it on social media that you will be prosecuted as a accomplice.
But in the process of advocating for Jordan’s Law, they learned of a rapidly expanding list of social media-related dangers, like cyberbullying, hate speech, and sexual harassment, which their organization now battles.
Click play above to listen to our conversation and learn how you can protect your own children and help be a part of the solution for others. At the 17-minute mark, Ed and Marc discuss 3 things parents can do right now to protect their kids. Have a listen.
Find out more at https://www.ofsms.org/. And here’s a link to their free safety course: https://courses.ofsms.org/courses/the-buckling-the-social-media-seatbelt-supercourse
Click these links to subscribe to this podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or Podbean.
Paul Smith is one of the world’s leading experts on business storytelling,
The Spare Room
Imagine you’re driving home from work one night around 8 pm. It’s cold. It’s raining. And there’s a dirty, slushy, melting snow on the ground. You glance out the car window and you see a young girl huddled up on the side of the road. She looks cold, scared, alone, and injured.
You pull over and invite her into your warm car, and take her to a diner for a meal.
She doesn’t speak to you the entire time. She just sits there, staring down into her plate while eating, dripping gray water all over the seat. Your mind races though all of the unthinkable possibilities for what might have lead her to this place in life.
When she finishes eating, still not having said a word, she peels herself off of the plastic seat, gets up, and heads toward the exit. You watch as her frail little back walks away from you. In two more seconds, she’ll be through the door and gone from your life forever.
At that moment, what do you do?
Emily Chang doesn’t have to imagine. She knows. Because this happened to her. At that moment what she decided to do was yell out,
“Where are you going to sleep tonight”?
The girl stopped. Her shoulders quivered a bit. And Emily continued, “I have a spare room.”
That girl became the first of sixteen people over the last 25 years to have been blessed to spend some of the darkest times of their lives in the respite of Emily Chang’s spare room.
An abused child bride. An unwanted boy with hydrocephalus. A girl raised in a brothel. And over a dozen other young people whose lives were changed for the better in Emily’s spare room.
Emily documents their stories in her new book, The Spare Room: Define Your Social Legacy to Live a More Intentional Life and Lead with Authentic Purpose. In the book, she not only shares their unforgettable stories, but the life and leadership lessons we can all learn from them.
In this episode, Emily describes one of those young people lucky enough to spend some time in Emily’s spare room. Click the play button above to hear the story of Devon, a child bride thrown out of her own home.
Emily Chang has worked in leadership positions at Procter & Gamble, Apple, and Starbucks. Today she serves as the CEO of China for the global advertising giant, McCann. You can find Emily at https://social-legacy.com/.
Click these links to subscribe to this podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or Podbean.
Paul Smith is one of the world’s leading experts on business storytelling, a keynote speaker, and bestselling author.
Connect with him via email here.
THE App to Help Your Kids Manage a Budget, Track Chores, Earn Their Allowance, and Learn Financial Responsibility
Benny Nachman, CEO of Jassby, joins me to explain how a new APP can both make your home life easier, while teaching your kids about smart money management. read more
How NOT to Treat Your Mother-in-Law this Thanksgiving
This might be the strangest Thanksgiving most of us ever have, due to the Coronavirus. So, to help you make it a good one, here’s a Thanksgiving lesson in humility that will help you make sure your interactions with family this year are ones you’ll be proud of. . . read more
What an 8-Year-Old Learned About Life Working in a Hardware Store During Hurricane Season
Finding out a hurricane is about to bear down on your hometown isn’t the kind of thing most people get excited about, especially when they’re eight years old. But then, most people aren’t like Jayson Zoller. read more
SOCIAL Disobedience: It’s like civil disobedience with your friends and neighbors
The past three weeks have been an almost non-stop parade of protests, all centered around the most recent tragic deaths that didn’t have to happen.
“Yes, that’s terrible. But what can I do?” you might ask. After all, you already changed your Facebook profile for BlackOut Day. And you even attended a Black Lives Matter march. So, you’re good right?
No, not really.
Those things only signal that you’re on the side of making
things better. But only on the side. As
in, the sideline. If you actually want to make a difference, you need to get
off the bench and into the game and that’s a lot harder than changing your
profile picture. And it probably means getting knocked around a little. I don’t
mean literally. This isn’t a call to violence. And I’m not suggesting you
intervene in an active arrest or break the law in an act of civil disobedience
(although both of those have their place, too).
Here I’m talking
about the kind of thing you can do on a daily basis by just calling out bad
behavior when you see it — in your family, friends, and neighbors. And that
takes courage. It might mean temporarily straining relationships with people
you care about. In the worst situations, you might even lose a friend over it.
But in most cases, you’ll end up earning new respect, from others, and for
Instead of “civil” disobedience, let’s call
it “social” disobedience. Because in this case, you’re rubbing
up against generally accepted rules of social behavior, like “If you don’t
have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all,” or going along with
what everyone else is doing even if you don’t agree with it. Or, more
generally, the aversion many of us have to disagree with or offer even the
gentlest of criticism to people we know for fear of damaging the relationship.
We need to get over
that. True friends will appreciate you being honest and direct with them
So, here’s an
example of what that looks like in the context of racial bigotry. But social
disobedience can be used for any worthwhile social change that you support and
from any side of the political spectrum. If it’s important to you, let the
people closest to you know — especially when they themselves are the problem.
Basketball with Torlick
When Ed was a five-
or six-year-old boy growing up in Colorado, he noticed that his was the only
house in the neighborhood painted red. All the other houses were either brown
or green. When he asked his dad why, his father said very matter of factly, “Because
when we moved in, the Homeowners Association told us we could only paint it
brown or green. So, naturally, I painted it red.”
Tanguay wasn’t much of a rule follower, at least not with rules he considers
unworthy. So you shouldn’t be too surprised at how he responded on another
occasion when he received a more unsettling directive from the HOA.
When Ed’s older
brother Mark was fourteen, he visited their aunt and uncle, who were on
assignment in the Peace Corps in the Marshall Islands, very close to the
equator in the western Pacific Ocean. Just prior to returning home, he called
his parents to ask if he could bring home a guest for a while. He’d befriended
a local boy named Torlick who’d never been to the United States.
Just words, yet everything!
Paul is providing a valued service and stories for not only teaching our children about honor, integrity, and grit, but important reminder for the adult reader about our obligations to the young. These stories will captivate your children and the lessons learned will be a moral compass for them to rely upon to make independent decisions. Keep up the great work Paul! -Sung
I googled would you rather for kids and this came up I’m not trying to say this is a bad podcast but I googled would you rather and all they talk about is their children i’m listen I’m not trying to be that one guy but still
Cannot get enough!
These stories are so compelling, visual, emotional, and thought-provoking that can't help but listen to the next one and the next one. I binged on the first four episodes and had to play them through my speakers in my room in order to keep listening while I got dressed for work one morning. Super easy to listen to!