How to Raise a Successful Adult

Kids doing dishes

Hello, my sweet friends! Summer is here. Thursday, was the first full day that the kids were out of school. I love the feeling of the sun on my face, hanging out at the pool, and bike rides around our neighborhood. Ready to relish every bit of summer.

I watched a great Ted Talk a few weeks ago and it left a lasting impression on me. Actually, it blew my mind. Lol! So, as usual, I thought that I would share.

A check listed childhood and the consequences of over-protective parenting….

The speaker, a former head at Stanford, talked about the standard at which we hold our kids, a standard that we were never held to. She said that we encourage our offspring to be in every after school program, to strive for the highest grades and test scores possible, to aim for the most accolades and awards attainable. Noting that their activities and hectic schedules are FAR more important than their happiness, home responsibilities, and/or sleep.

In the race to push our kids to SOAR, to reach a little higher, these same kids are wilting as adults. Stressed from a childhood that was anything, but simple. The interesting point is that in our drive to have them be the BEST that they can be, we place less importance on simple activities like free play and chores.

Harvard’s Grant Study

During the Ted Talk, Mrs. Lythcott-Haims referenced the longest longitudinal human study in existence. Harvard’s Grant Study, which started in 1938, found that the best predictor of success in latter life was CHORES in childhood. Yes, chores! The research concluded that the willingness to perform household tasks as a kid translated to a “can do” attitude in adulthood.

Something as simple as taking out the trash and cleaning dishes correlated to the MOST SUCCESSFUL people in the study.

So, now what?


I had a hard time finding the perfect chore chart and I didn’t want to spend a lot on it. Instead, I found a free printable and then took it to the UPS store to be laminated.

Parker and John Barton each have their own chart. I plan on rotating their chores weekly, so that they have a variety of job duties. Hopefully, having it on our refrigerator will be a good reminder for them to complete their daily tasks.

For Parker’s chore chart, go here. For John Barton’s chore chart, go here.

An age appropriate chore list that I used.

Here’s to raising SUCCESSFUL adults! 😉


Lythcott-Haims, Julie. “How to raise successful kids – without over-parenting.” Ted Talks, November 2015,

Vaillant, George E., The Study of Adult Development,

4 responses to “How to Raise a Successful Adult”

  1. T. Papaioannou Avatar
    T. Papaioannou

    RUBBISH! Those “studies” are FLAWED. So you raise a successful adult by forcing your kids to do your housework? Please answer me. HOW COME I AM A SUCCESSFUL ADULT AND I WAS NEVER FORCED TO DO CHORES AS A KID? HOW IS MY SISTER A SUCCESSFUL AND VERY HARD WORKING ADULT? HOW ARE SO MANY OTHERS I KNOW THE SAME? You want to use your kids as free labour? OK. But stop the silly EXCUSES!

    1. Hello, friend! It seems that you want to keep our conversation going. For anyone interested, look at my Instagram account. I think that the word “chore” may be lost in translation. In Greece, kids helping their parents may mean “free labor.” In America, chores are equivalent to a child picking up their own toys, making their own bed, and helping clean their breakfast dishes, etc. At our house, they spend about 30 minutes total completing their list. Did you not have to make your bed as a child? Our kids are not digging ditches and slaving away. Just curious, why you are so against a child picking up after themselves?? I think we have similar values (hoping that children have a playful, happy, carefree childhood), but the word “chore” is lost in translation.

  2. Hi Lauren ! Yes! So much this! Do you know that I happened to watch the same TED talk recently and then I checked FB this morning and saw your blog post. I love what you’re doing btw. Thank you for sharing so freely on this journey of life. Love ❤️ to you and your sweet family ! Erin

    1. Thanks, Erin!! 💕 I loved the Ted Talk. It really moved me. So cool that you saw the same one. ✨🤩 Most of the time, I do everything for our house, because it’s “easier.” Learning to guide the kids and encourage them is a process. Hoping the time we work together produces fruit later in life. Miss you, friend!! 😘

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