Children have more need
of models than of critics.

Joseph Joubert (also
attributed to Carolyn Coats)


If you as parents cut corners, your children will too.  If you lie, they will too. If you spend all your money on yourselves and tithe no portion of it for charities, colleges, churches, synagogues, and civic causes, your children won't either.  And if parents snicker at racial and gender jokes, another generation will pass on the poison adults still have not had the courage to snuff out.

Marian Wright Edelman


You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.

Khalil Gibran


Celebrity-worship and hero-worship should not be confused.  Yet we confuse them every day, and by doing so we come dangerously close to depriving ourselves of all real models.  We lose sight of the men and women who do not simply seem great because they are famous but are famous because they are great. We come closer and closer to degrading all fame into notoriety.

Daniel J. Boorstin
If you set the right example, you won't need to worry about the rules.



Role modeling is the most basic responsibility of parents.  Parents are handing life's scripts to their children, scripts that in all likelihood will be acted out for the rest of the children's lives.

Stephen R. Covey


Whether or not you have children yourself, you are a parent to
the next generation.  If we can only stop thinking of children as
individual property and think of them as the next generation,
then we can realize we all have a role to play.

Charlotte Davis-Kasl


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You are in charge of your feelings, beliefs, and actions.  And
you teach others how to behave toward you.  While you
cannot change other people, you can influence them through
your own behaviors and actions.  By being a living role model
of what you want to receive from others, you create more of
what you want in your life.

Eric Allenbaugh


The best way to teach children restraint and generosity is to be
a model of those qualities yourself.  If your children see that you
want a particular item but refrain from buying it, either because
it isnít practical or because you canít afford it, they will begin
to understand restraint.  Likewise, if you donate books or clothing
to charity, take them with you to distribute the items
to teach them about generosity.

Lawrence Balter


I think it's an honor to be a role model to one person
or maybe more than that.  If you are given a chance
to be a role model, I think you should always take it
because you can influence a person's life in a positive light,
and that's what I want to do.  That's what it's all about.

Tiger Woods


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Don't worry that children never listen to you.
Worry that they are always watching you.

Robert Fulghum

The blossom cannot tell what becomes of its odor, and no person
can tell what becomes of his or her influence and example.

Henry Ward Beecher


You've got to be careful whom you pattern yourself after
because you're likely to become just like them.

Rich Mayo

If I am walking with two other people, each of them will serve as my
teacher.  I will pick out the good points of the one and imitate them,
and the bad points of the other and correct them in myself.



You don't have to know people personally for them to be role
models.  Some of my most important role models were historical
or literary figures that I only read about--never actually met.

John Wilson


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The most important role models in people's lives, it seems,
aren't superstars or household names.  They're "everyday"
people who quietly set examples for you--coaches, teachers,
parents.  People about whom you say to yourself, perhaps
not even consciously, "I want to be like that."

Tim Foley

Some of the most important people in my life would be shocked
to learn that they were role models.  They weren't celebrities,
or even particularly accomplished.  But they had some quality
that I admired, that made me want to be like them.

Donn Moomaw


Each person must live their life as a model for others.

Rosa Parks

A troubled mother took her daughter to see Mohandas Gandhi,
who was world-renowned for his great spiritual discipline.  It seems
the young girl had become addicted to eating sweets, and her mother
wanted Gandhi to speak to her about this harmful habit and convince
her to drop it.  Upon hearing this request, Gandhi paused in silence
and then told the mother, "Bring the girl back to me in three weeks
and I will speak to her then."

Just as she was instructed, the mother returned with her daughter,
and Gandhi, as he had promised, spoke to the girl about the detrimental
effects of eating too many sweets.  He counseled her to give them up.

The mother gratefully thanked Gandhi, but was perplexed.  "Why,"
she asked him, "did you not speak to my daughter when we first came to you?"

"My good woman," Gandhi replied, "three weeks ago
I myself was still addicted to sweets!"

Since we do not get formal training from society, we've been relying on
the role models in our lives.  But isn't it true that most of us were raised
by parents from an era that put little or no emphasis on human functioning?
Where life management was concerned, people of earlier generations did
get strapped into the cockpit and launched off the runway, ready or not.
If our parents were never trained to be effective mothers, fathers, spouses,
then what kind of role models could they be?  In fact, I submit to you that
if you have been fortunate enough to have positive role models in your life,
you--and they--can thank Providence or blind luck or even trial and error that
they got it right, but it's a safe bet that training and preparation had nothing
to do with it.  Simply put, this means not only that you may lack certain
crucial information, but that the information you do have may be wrong.

Phil McGraw

The young are looking for living models whom they can imitate and who are
capable of rousing their enthusiasm and drawing them to a deeper kind of
life.  More than anything else, the young need sure guides to go with them
on the paths of liberation that God maps out for them.

Bakole wa Ilunga


Others see their possibility in the reality of
you.  Your message is your life lived.

Neale Donald Walsch

It's hard to carry a child around with you, but fortunately, in most cases,
you don't have to ask a child for directions if you have a well-chosen role
model ready to guide you.  This is the next prescription:  Take one role
model, as often as needed.  Set aside a few minutes today to fill this
prescription so you will have it handy when you need it.  Think now
about who your role models have been.  What do they offer?  Who else
do you admire, and exactly what do you admire about them?  Have your
roster of role models ready and waiting to help you the next time you are perplexed.

Bernie Siegel
Prescriptions for Living