Professor Dan Ariely wrote a penetrating piece in The Wall Street Journal entitled Why We Lie. In it, he relates the following story:
“Not too long ago, one of my students, named Peter, told me a story that captures rather nicely our society’s misguided efforts to deal with dishonesty. One day, Peter locked himself out of his house. After a spell, the locksmith pulled up in his truck and picked the lock in about a minute.
‘I was amazed at how quickly and easily this guy was able to open the door,’ Peter said. The locksmith told him that locks are on doors only to keep honest people honest. One percent of people will always be honest and never steal. Another 1% will always be dishonest and always try to pick your lock and steal your television; locks won’t do much to protect you from the hardened thieves, who can get into your house if they really want to. The purpose of locks, the locksmith said, is to protect you from the 98% of mostly honest people who might be tempted to try your door if it had no lock.’
Unless you deem yourself in the 1% Always Honest camp, this is food for thought. And this also applies to our children, who can notoriously shut off their brain at times. Encourage them to keep your front door locked. You can’t always ensure your kids make the right choices, but for starters, here are 10 ways to keep your kids from doing dumb things.
Huddle up with your children tonight and say: “One of the dumbest things I did growing up was ____.”