As parents we hate seeing our kids unhappy, and giving in sometimes feels a lot easier than saying no. However, we’re creating a “selfie” dynamic in our world where humans only care about themselves and not the community around them.
Pampering, snow plowing away problems and defending your child’s every struggle keeps them from experiences that build resilience. To raise kids who care about others, you must actively work to set boundaries and expectations.
Say no. Research shows that kids raised with structure and boundaries have higher self-worth and feel more empathy toward others.
Praise the right things. Praise them for caring, sharing and working well with others. Ask them specifically to share how they reached out to someone at school or did a random act of kindness and applaud it.
Practice gratitude. Children feel happier, cope better with adversity and increase their daily satisfaction when they practice gratitude. The words “thank you” cannot be said enough.
Call out inconsiderate acts. Don’t allow your child to engage in even remotely inconsiderate acts; talk about how other people feel and help your kids learn empathy.
Focus on giving and not getting. Monitor consumption and set limits to the amount of things your kids get. Engage in ways to give and serve to build the muscle of caring for others.
Now those are snapshots you’ll be proud of as a parent: ones that show your child in an un-selfie way.
Brought to you by:
Santiam Christian Elementary Principal
santiamchristian.org 541-745-5524 x 243