In my training as a life-coach, I have learned that humans develop their core beliefs – their entire belief structure upon which all programs and relating patterns are built – before the age of 6; even before their brain has developed logical thinking ability. I’ve also learned that the training children receive from their parents must be fully intact prior to the child hitting their teenage years. As they enter their teenage years, children turn away from their parents to assert their individuality and toward their peers to find acceptance. The need to belong to a “tribe” grows as puberty sends hormones coursing through their bodies.
I’ve always believed that the teaching a child receives at a tender age is the teaching that lasts and that it is that teaching that forms the basis for which identity is built upon. I grew up in a home with a strict religious construct. I learned my values and morals through this religious upbringing and through the teachings of my parents. Even though I am no longer religious, I still adhere to those basic teachings and that basic “goodness” is a huge part of my identity. My parents most certainly influenced my identity and, for that, I am very grateful. I’ve been blessed with amazing parents and they started me out right.
I was excited to read in the text about how big of an influence family is on a person’s identity. (Santrock, 2008, p. 408) I’ve been witness to the power of a loving family in raising up individuals with healthy identity. I’ve also been witness to the destruction brought on by parents who are not interactive in the lives of their children. I know without a doubt that I am the caliber of woman I am today because of my parents.