Despite being absolute terrors in our teenage years, and if I’m honest… well into our early 20s (sorry Mum!!) my two sisters and I turned out pretty dam well if I do say so myself! I put it down to being raised in the country (aka on a farm in the middle of nowhere in WA) which has installed polite manners, work ethics and good ol’ fashion values.

So it got me thinking, how will I pass this down? What life lessons will I drum into my own children apart from don’t sleep in your makeup like I was told (yes, still useful to this day).

Now I find myself, 4 months off being a first time mother, questioning this more and more. How will I raise a well-adjusted little human while living in the city? How can I prevent them from making the same mistakes I did?

Well I’m not sure if that is even possible BUT thanks to my pregnancy related insomnia I have some thoughts on how I will try and what I will attempt to pass down:

  • Manners will be always be used by said offspring and demonstrated by surrounding adults. Lead by example I say. It’s no wonder that to this day my sisters and I have terrible potty mouths (I won’t give an example of my fathers vocab…).
  • Playing outdoors and getting your hands dirty is compulsory. Sure back in the day we had Nintendo and Donkey Kong, but bush exploring, cubby house building, horse riding or dog snuggling always came first. The results? Gals who are independent and not prissy.
  • It’s ok to be you. In fact it is essential that you are!! Stop trying so hard to be like the other kids because you are perfect as you. I wish I knew this pearl of wisdom back then.
  • Now this will be a tricky one… understand there is no rush to grow up. You will be there before you know it. Other option as parents is to move back to the middle of nowhere away from all bad influences. That’s an option right?
  • Of course, helping around the house is a given. As kids we earnt pocket money doing chores around the house/farm and I believe this turned me into the money saver and entrepreneur I am today! Or stingy. Either or.
  • Read books. It’s cool to have an imagination and brains. It’s not cool to act like an air head or talk like you are in an episode of The Hills.
  • Body image, sex, drugs and all things will be discussed. Stay tuned for how that will actually roll out!
  • Reach for the stars. Anything is possible in our lives so reach big. And as a future ‘most likely over protective, over supportive and has no idea what she is doing Mum’ I know this point is absolutely true!


By Lee Sutherland, director of Fitness In The City and of recently launched organic herbal tea company Little Wildling Co  Nervous soon to be mother of one.

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