Recently I was helping my wife, Camilla, prepare a workshop entitled “Starting Well: Shape Your Children Today For Healthier Tomorrows.” She asked me what I thought was the most important take-away message for the attendees.
I said “Yesterday’s Weather.”
Yesterday’s Weather is an expression that I learned from a behavioral expert who specializes in the field of software engineering. Social psychologists widely accept the position that the best predictor of tomorrow’s behavior is yesterday’s behavior.
As a New Englander, preparing for the brunt of yet another winter weather system, I can relate to the weather analogy. It turns out that despite all of the technology and gadgetry, meteorologists still consider better than 50% accuracy the Holy Grail - whereas if they simply said that tomorrow’s weather will be like yesterday’s, they’d be 72% accurate.
The most profound message for parents who are eager to give their children the best chance at better health and life outcomes is simply this: you create culture.
Live these strategies out loud in front of your children. Embrace the most influential position that you will ever know: Role Model.
As I said once to a parent of five: you cannot possibly watch all of those kids all of the time. But they are always watching you.
Now go and create the future,
Dr. Stephen Franson