There are so many things we want for our children. Even before having kids I remember dreaming of the day I was a parent. Dreaming of my children growing up to be smart, successful, compassionate and kind. I dreamt of the day my child would be the friend everyone wanted to have and not because they were the typical “popular kid” but because they were so kind to everyone.
Now, as a mother, and as my children grow, I keep thinking about what I can be doing to make sure my children grow to be kind and compassionate. What can I be doing to help set them up for the best life they can have?
In order to help nurture kindness in our children it is important to encourage just that. Helping others and helping our children to do so teaches them empathy, respect, and a sense of service to others.
Lead by Example
One of the most important factors in teaching our children any lesson is leading by example. When our children see us doing something, being kind, serving others, remaining positive, then they learn to do just that. Especially when most often, mom and dad are the greatest influence to the children for much of their lives.
Help Them Understand Their Emotions
Emotions can be hard to understand. Even as adults it can be hard to discern why we are angry, sad, or upset. Children have a hard time understanding these emotions and often times destructive emotions, poorly understood, can manifest and be taken out on others. Teaching our kids to understand their emotions and work through them in a healthy, safe manner, can help them remain positive and kind to others.
Allow Them to See Your Imperfections
It is important for kids to understand they are not perfect. When they understand this, it is easier to work through mistakes and flaws. When they see our imperfections, it helps them understand that everyone is the same. Mom is able to make mistakes and work through them, then so are they. This helps children also manage their emotions. Disappointment and anger over mistakes can be understood and worked through rather than manifesting in negative manners.
I’d love to hear from you. How do you encourage kindness in your children?