A Roadmap to Responsibility and Independence: Podcast Bonus Episode!

In today’s bonus podcast episode I answer WTOO Facebook group member Jennifer’s question about how to get kids to take responsibility without continually hovering around them and “politely interrupting” in order to get kids to clean up their messes.

I put this in the context of a roadmap, which includes three crucial steps to independence, responsibility, and guilt-free parenting.

(BTW: I share about a conversation I had recently on a wonderful show, Authentic Parenting. Click here for Anna Seewald’s conversation with me, in episode 185 of her show, all about how our childhoods impact our whole lives. (You should listen away from kiddos, there are some adult themes in this episode.)

Thank you so much for listening!

I’m offering a special program, “How to do less for your kids, and feel good about it: 21 days to Independence,” which starts this coming Monday, July 15.

Everything I cover in this episode – and it’s a lot! – has been a starting point.

This 3-week workshop is tailored specifically to your needs, very personalized (even includes videos that I make just for you each week!) and so helpful as you work to get your child to be independent and responsible.

Registration ends Sunday July 14, if spots don’t run out first! (I am strictly limiting enrollment, and there are just a few spots left now.)

Go to weturnedoutokay.com/indy to learn more about the program, watch a video overview, and to sign up!

If you’re listing after Sunday, July 14, 2019, and you want to learn how to get your child to be independent and responsible, I recommend that you join the private coaching community I run for parents.
Go to weturnedoutokay.com/workwithme to learn more!

What kids can achieve

Happy Wednesday!

  • See below for my weekly “in training” update, on how I am doing with getting Educating Happy Kids, my forthcoming book, out to you in a timely fashion!
  • I am offering a FREE workshop in the We Turned Out Okay Facebook group on the topic of today’s newsletter, a whole week’s worth of videos on how to help your child be more independent, so you can be, too!
    • I want to make it easy on you to get started on the road to independence, which is why I’m offering videos each day, Monday July 8 through Friday July 12, on subjects like “how to train your kids to let you sleep in,” and “how to worry and hover less over your kids.” Click here to join the Facebook group!


I started out as arguably the most worrying and hovering mother you could imagine.

I was afraid to let my kids:

    • Crawl up the stairs as babies, lest they fall
    • Eat chunks of fruit, meat, a I about you when nd other foods, lest they choke (I worried about this long after there was a need to)
    • Play outside in the cold, lest they get frostbite
    • Play in water, lest they drown


I was afraid to let them do almost anything, to be out of my sight for almost any amount of time.

But they themselves showed me the way, pointed me in the right direction.

When I saw how curious about the world they were, how interested in everything, I knew I didn’t want to hold them back.

So no matter my own hangups, I had to find a way to let them quench their thirst for knowledge, confidence, and competence.

I am so grateful to them for showing me the way.

Not only has it meant that my sons are knowledgeable, confident, and competent; it also means they are independent, in the best way possible.


What does independence mean for you, and your family?

It could mean a few things… Starting with simple kitchen duty, a huge stressor in many homes (as it has been in ours).

Because of the work we put in, teaching these skills when our kids were young, they now feel confident and competent in their ability, for example, to cook meals and clean up after themselves.

In terms of education, it could mean achievement like you never thought possible. One of my sons learned all of high school math during this past spring semester; just graduated high school in the 90th percentile for mathematics; and yesterday enrolled in community college.
His major? Mathematics.

This is a kid who ran screaming from math all of his young life.

In terms of potty training and hygiene, one of our sons, who we used to feed entire donuts to so he would go poops on the potty, has spent the last year coping with a health problem that requires keeping scrupulously clean, at all times.

He’s handled it so beautifully, both the crazy-hygiene stuff, and also the mindset of “this is what I have to deal with right now, so I am going to buckle down and handle it.”

Both kids are accomplished musicians.

Both can mow the lawn, muck out the chicken coop, and know a weed from a plant-we-want-to-keep.
One is a skier, one is a snowboarder, and both are comfortable on almost any ski-hill terrain.

And it’s interesting, because all of this independence came through connection.

As Dr. Michael Reichert, this week’s podcast guest, shares during our conversation, “it’s not WHAT they’ll learn; it’s for WHOM they’ll learn.”

While I was getting up the guts to let our sons follow their interests, and learn about the subjects on which they were most curious, the people they met – teachers, mentors, grandparents, even sometimes myself or their dad – spurred their curiosity and interest, and also spurred them onto achievement in those subjects.

Not for the reason of “achieving.” Instead, they were spurred on to become competent, knowledgeable, in those things that most interest to them, so they could further the connections.

So they could spend more time with the people who were also into these things that they were into.

We still see this, even today, and speaking with Dr. Reichert really brought the point home to me.


In order to have kids who are independent, they must first feel the connection.

How can you help your kids, on the road to independence?

Foster that connection. Support them in their interests. Help them meet people who are also interested in those same subjects.

And celebrate the wins. (Thank you, for letting me celebrate some of the wins that my boys have recently accomplished, in this space today!)

And, jump on into our Facebook group if you are not there already! That way, you can be there for next week’s focus on getting independence for your child, and you…
Click here to join our Facebook group!


In-Training Update: I am working on the suggestions my editor recommended to make Educating Happy Kids: 9 Ways to Help Your Children Learn What They Need to Know a book that will help you and your family life!

And I’m also working on book covers so I can have a survey to you ASAP!

Also… I have made the decision to get the book up for preorder in mid August, and release it in September. And those dates are coming up soon, so I better get cracking : )


Keep reading below for What’s up on the podcast/in the Facebook group…

And for the picture of the week!
Wishing you a wonderful parenting week!
What’s up on the podcast this week:

My guest, Doctor Michael Reichert, is an expert on boys’ and girls’ lives, and I know you are going to love our conversation! Click the link below to listen:


What’s up in the We Turned Out Okay Facebook group this week:
Each Monday in our We Turned Out Okay Facebook group I do a superquick Facebook live that I call “Magic Words for Parents”… And this week’s shares a concept that all kids need, regardless of gender.
Click here to join the Facebook group : )

Picture of the week:

This is a picture of my youngest, when he was two years old and just gaining confidence, experience, and independence on fun structures like playground slides.

It is nuts to think that this picture was taken nearly 13 years ago. While I am excited for what’s in store for my boys, I am also feeling a little nostalgic for times past.

And super grateful that I got out of worrying and hovering over my sons in time to enjoy at least some of their childhoods : )


PS – If you’re enjoying this Weekly Parenting Newsletter, sign up to receive it in your inbox, or forward it to a friend who needs a parenting boost today.