Heroes and super heros. They dominate the movies and cartoons. Who can do supernormal things, can fight everyone all alone.
Do we see heroes solve problems by talking? No. It is through fighting. Otherwise it is too boring for a movie /cartoon. How about listening? No. Heros would talk more than others, may drop killer dialog in high pitch. Without it, it is too boring for a movie.
But .. THAT image of the hero keeps growing inside the kids. So does the frustration that he or she is not a hero. This is hardly trivial issue. You may think, it is just movie and it is obvious. Over long term exposure, the difference between movie and reality fades. We see this in the way kids react these days. Extremely low patience, inability to cope, intolerance and everything.
When kid gets older, the same belief of the hero and problem solving, sticks with the kid. But the good news is you could help without much effort. You just need to use few seconds of commercial break between the movie.
Talk about these two things:
1. Be explicit about the obvious – Movies show unreal things and they are for entertainment only
You might think that it is obvious that these are unreal and there is no need to say it. But gradually the mind gets programmed. It makes a difference to be say it loud.
Movie way of problem solving is not meant for real world. Even in movies based on real stories, there is lot of fiction. And they put attractive personalities. For the movie to be attractive, all these are needed.
Just look at the real vs. reel hero of “Pursuit of happiness”
And also the reel vs. real in Bollywood movie “Chak De !”
Dear kid, do not worry if you think you are not good enough.
2. Commanding and controlling others like a movie hero is not necessary. It could be useful sometimes, and sometimes even be harmful
Being successful in life is about success at career and at personal life. Being successful- requires, strengths different than what movies portray.
From 20+ years of my experience in corporate world , I have observed in last few decades, the main leadership traits have changed. Earlier commanding and controlling used to be a big thing for managers of global companies. Most sought-after positions used to be about hero-like persona and traits. Modern management research points to more down-to-earth approach. It has changed from controlling shop floor to effective relationship management. Social media makes it hard to get away with fake image for long time.
It is now more about listening and talking. Not just talking. And much less commanding.
3. Tell Your Story
So, should your parenting for success of your kids. Success is about both personal life and work place. You could start a real world story in the commercial break. If you look for examples in your own life, you will find plenty of them.
Story of how you are a hero by solving a real world problem.
It could be the story of lifetime for your little one.