There are countless ways to parent, but there is no right way. It’s not an exact science — far from it — and different strategies and messages work for different parents and different kids. Regardless of the path chosen, parents’ goal is to educate, support, protect, push, and love their children.
But how do you balance protecting vs. pushing? There’s no concrete answer, of course, but Spartan CEO and founder Joe De Sena — a father of four — leans toward the “make it harder” approach. That’s evident in this video, as Joe encourages his young kids to make it up a steep, snowy Vermont mountain, carrying kettlebells for good measure.
“I don’t think we’re doing our kids any favors by making it easy,” Joe says. “Yes, we should love them. Yes, they should know they have a safety net and we’ll catch them, but life is hard, and it only gets harder.”
Joe gives them encouragement along the way, but notes bluntly that it’s getting colder and darker, and they don’t have headlamps. One way or another, they’re going to have to persevere and reach their goal.
Ultimately, they got the job done.
“Dad’s been pushing us for years, and now we push ourselves,” Joe’s son, Jack, says at the conclusion of the journey.
Joe also fulfills his fatherly duty of teaching his kids about Rocky Balboa’s epic bout against Ivan Drago in Rocky IV, which might be just as important as the overall lesson itself.
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