Life Lessins Blog

Turning the tide of entitlement

As the dismissal teacher directed traffic at pick-up, she noticed a fourth grader exit the gate and walk towards his father’s car, positioned just a few spots back in the carpool line. It was forbidden for students to pass the fence before being summoned, so she called him back and told him he would have […]

Helping our kids think through decisions

One of the most important skills we can give our kids is the ability to think through their decisions. Children are naturally rash, not known for considering consequences before taking action. We see this in our own homes – we routinely watch our kids react in ways that leave us wondering how much forethought, if […]

Why teaching our kids is only half the answer

At last year’s Agudath Israel of America convention, Rabbi Joey Haber addressed the audience on raising children in the age of technology. Rabbi Haber pointed out that roughly every twenty years, parenting changes its focus. In the 70s and 80s, discipline was the backbone of good child-rearing. It was important for parents who had been […]

Pesach: A Release From Pressure

We all have expectations hanging over our heads, especially this time of year. Between work deadlines and bills to pay, family responsibilities and religious commitments, academic due dates and social obligations, errands to run and people to get back to – topped off with an extra dose of Pesach cleaning – the demands on our […]

Mental Spring Cleaning

The season of scrubbing has begun, when rubber gloves come off the shelves and feather dusters finally get their chance to shine. After what always feels like a long winter, it’s time to crawl out of hibernation and pull back the shades, as we start tackling the home organization projects backlogged in our brains for […]

Purim: Don’t Miss It

My daughter recently showed me a music video that she knew I’d enjoy. It was a country tune sung by a father on memory lane, reminiscing about his little girl’s youth now that she was all grown up. Walking through the town in which his daughter once skipped and played, he thinks back to all […]

Developing Security (Part Two)

In our last post, we examined impressiveness and its more insidious driver, insecurity. We suggested that our efforts to accumulate praise may be a camouflaged attempt to address the nagging question: “Am I ok?” This persistent worry, often located just below the radar of awareness, prompts us to speak and act in ways that (we […]

Needing to Impress (Part One)

“Make a good impression” is a lesson we’ve heard since childhood. No matter how rambunctious we were at home, we knew to put our best foot forward when walking out the front door. To be received well is a message that doesn’t get old as we age, either. Whether on a first date, a job […]

The Formation of Identity

I have been blessed to know hundreds of young men on the cusp of beginning their post-adolescent lives. These emerging grown-ups have taught me the ins-and-outs of young adulthood, a complex stage of life in which we start to figure out what makes us tick while beginning to catch a glimpse of where our lives […]

Temimut: Stepping into the unknown

Most of us don’t like entering a process without the foreknowledge of how it will play out. Predicting what we think is going to happen is about grasping for security and the sense that we have some control over what’s coming. It’s our way of forecasting the future so that we can mentally prepare for […]