Culture and traditions play a key role in creating approaches to parenting and determining children’s response to criticism and motivation. Extrinsic motivation plays a smaller role compared to intrinsic motivation in self-actualization. The article “Why Chinese Mothers are Superior” highlights the fact that parents who have high expectations and criticize poor performance by their children promote the idea that failure is unacceptable.
We will write a custom Essay on Chinese Parenting Style specifically for you
301 certified writers online
The parenting approach by Chinese mothers forces children out of their comfort zone and pressurizes them to achieve levels of greatness beyond their imagination (Chua par. 4). Chinese children learn from a tender age that with proper effort and dedication, they can achieve outstanding results. High levels of competence and self-esteem are solely the products of the cultivation of the idea that an individual’s abilities are infinite.
The perception that Chinese mothers set unreasonable targets for their children arises because the Western culture promotes the belief that every person has a talent or ability that he or she should pursue to the highest level of excellence. Western parents will encourage their children to discard tasks or activities that the children are unable to tackle satisfactorily in favor of tasks that the children can accomplish with great excellence.
Compromise on expectations promotes the idea that every child has a threshold regarding the extent of his or her ability to tackle tasks. The parenting approach by a large number of Western parents influences children to embrace the notion that their abilities have limits and promotes the development of characters who quit on every difficult task. Intrinsic motivation emerges from within the self after surmounting challenges to attain set goals.
Extrinsic motivation often leads to dismal performance by children because parents tend to give praise on easily attainable tasks. Frequent praise on achievements interferes with a child’s consciousness regarding self-actualization, which is detrimental to the child’s perception of personal abilities. The idea of unacceptable levels of strictness in parenting thrives on the claim that children have varying levels of psychological strength and resilience, which influences their ability to cope with challenging tasks.
While some children are highly resilient and can withstand long hours of practice and test on difficult tasks, others easily reach their breaking point and enter into a state of depression and self-pity. The protective nature of parents influences the extent to which parents push their children to perform difficult tasks because they do not want to feel guilty for being coercive and cruel to their children (Waldman par. 7)
The threshold of psychological breakdown is relative, and changes as individuals adapt to strenuous environments. The fact that a high number of authoritative parents raise confident, competent and successful children in comparison to permissive and uninvolved parents highlights that the human mind adjusts appropriately in response to changing environmental stimuli (Levine par. 3). Permissive parenting allows room for failure without any meaningful consequences and influences the attitude that children can underperform.
Chinese mothers acknowledge the importance of authoritative approaches to parenting, considering that they actively participate in helping their children to achieve greatness. Although the Chinese parenting style appears unreasonable to Western parents, it helps educate strong-minded individuals who will prefer to reattempt challenging tasks until they succeed. While flexibility on set targets creates room for innovation and creativity, it encourages most individuals to aim for low targets due to the perception of self-inadequacy.
Chua, Amy. “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior.” The Wall Street Journal. 2011. Web.
Levine, Madeline. “Raising Successful Children.” The New York Times. 2012. Web.
Waldman, Ayelet. “In Defense of the Guilty, Ambivalent, Preoccupied Western Mom.” The Wall Street Journal, 2011. Web.