I love stories! My Dad used to be a brilliant storyteller making up endless stories for me to fall happily asleep to last thing at night. He also used to tell my children “true lies” as he had run out of true stories about growing up in Balham during the war, learning how to milk a cow on his Aunt Ada’s farm in Wales and telling me about the adventures of Speedy 27 the squirrel in our garden who was a friend of a boy called Capern – a name he made up from some bird seed he’d seen in a hardware shop!
We all need stories. Stories are important and they are around us all the time in many guises from the TV, newspapers, to our relationships with our friends, families and neighbours.
A good story can inspire us, teach us, make us dream and laugh and help us learn.
A good story can help us to understand ourselves.
Children learn so much from stories – the hero or heroine having a dream or a goal and then life offering them an obstacle which sets up their conflict and challenge starting them off on their adventure. From that struggle they achieve success and reach new heights of understanding. But unlike fairy stories life will always offer a new challenge and rarely if ever, does “living happily ever after” mean that the story is over.
That’s the exciting part….. it’s a never ending adventure….. if you perceive it as that.
Stories offer us all an opportunity to grow, to widen our perspectives and perceptions and to explore the rich tapestry of life. They introduce us to new ways of thinking, helping us grow through change and challenges and make life worth the ride.
So with this in mind here is your Wednesday story based on a Native American Tradition from my never ending notebook and my everlasting pencil!!
Dances with Wolves
A white- haired Cherokee is teaching his grandchildren about life. He tells them. “A fight is going on inside me. A terrible fight and it is a fight between two wolves.
One wolf represents fear, greed, hatred, envy, false pride, self-pity, resentment, guilt, inferiority, arrogance, deceitfulness, superiority and selfishness.
The other wolf stands for peace, love, kindness, joy, truth, compassion, humility, transparency, authenticity, friendship, respect, integrity, benevolence, faith, generosity, sharing serenity and empathy.
The same fight is going on inside you and every other person too.”
The children thought about this for awhile. Then one little girl asked her grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”
The old Cherokee held a long silence. Then simply said, “Whichever one you feed.”
It’s easy to think kindness, respect, integrity and love are passive qualities but it’s the good wolf who wins his internal battle not a good easily lead sheep.
Which wolf are you teaching your kids to feed?
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About the author
Sue Atkins is a Parenting Expert who offers practical guidance for bringing up happy, confident, well behaved children. She is also the author of “Raising Happy Children for Dummies” one in the famous black and yellow series published worldwide and the highly acclaimed Parenting Made Easy CDs. She regularly appears on BBC Breakfast and The Jeremy Vine Show on BBC Radio 2 and her parenting articles are published all over the world.
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Sue Atkins the Parenting Expert
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