Who was that person you wanted to look like, act like, or imitate as you grew up, and what was it about the person that you liked, is it the person’s shape, clothing, or behavior? That person could be your role model. I remember having similar feelings as a child; I wanted to be like one of my teachers because of the way she speaks; after a few years, I had another role model; I noticed I kept changing role models, and now I have different role models for various reasons. People have also told me that I am one of their role models. In my street, I have been approached, particularly by young girls, and my daughters have told me that they want to look like me when they reach my age. This tells me that we are all role models to different people in different places and capacities for a variety of reasons.
When you realize you are a role model, you feel a sense of sudden responsibility. These ladies who approached me on my street explained why they wanted to look like me; one of them assumed my youngest daughter was my only child because my older children were in school; she admired my clothing and shape; I later informed her that I have other grown children, and she was surprised. This awareness motivates me to exercise more in order to stay in shape, and I also make an effort to dress appropriately before leaving the house; you never know how many people are watching.
Who is a role model?
“A role model is a person whose behavior, example, or success is or can be emulated by others, especially by younger people. The term role model is credited to sociologist Robert K. Merton, who hypothesized that individuals compare themselves with reference groups of people who occupy the social role to which the individual aspires, an example of which is the way young fans may idolize and imitate professional athletes or entertainment artists.”– Wikipedia
There are different types of role models;
- A peer, either older or younger than you, who has done, or is doing better than you in a particular job or career, and whom you would like to emulate. These people serve as positive role models.
- Another type of role model is one who has the qualities of a positive role model, they may have achieved what you want to achieve or exhibit behaviors you want to emulate, but you discover that their values are quite different from yours, so trying to emulate their process may not be in your best interests, but you were able to discover that you may be on the right track before desiring to be like them. This will motivate you to take the next step on your own. This type of role model is referred to as a reverse role model.
- The third type of role model is someone who is in the same situation as you, doing the same job, but not doing well. When you study their lifestyle in order to avoid making the same mistakes they have made or maybe making, these people become anti-role models for you. These are examples of people who failed for reasons that you later discover and try to avoid so that you can succeed where they failed.
What type of role model do you want to be? If you want to be a positive role model, you should have the following characteristics:
– In your daily pursuit, be passionate about what is important to you and what distinguishes you from others.
– Maintain consistency in your actions, values, and beliefs.
– Be brave, calm, and confident.
– Improve your communication skills and your ability to assist others. Make time for people and make yourself available.
Role modeling requires a great deal of learning and observation on the part of the observer, as well as a willingness to impart knowledge and communication skills on the part of the role model. If you are a parent, you may want to start at home by being a positive role model for your children. It takes a lot of dedication and sacrifice, but it is well worth it in the end; additionally, children learn more through observation.
“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