Babies are a bundle of bliss and happiness. They get happy with the smallest and the simplest joys of life. For some kids, this happiness quotient grows with their age. For some it diminishes as they enter teenage, and then into adulthood. What is the differentiating factor? Genetics? Not so much. It has been proven that optimistic children are a product of a happy and positive environment. With the right approach, it is possible to give your kids the life skills required to lead happier lives. Here are some easy steps and strategies given by the leading experts in the field of parenting.
Teach them gratitude: Thanksgiving is one of the most widely celebrated events in the world. And for all the right reasons. Incorporating gratitude early on in life makes them happier adults. Kids who are taught to be grateful, learn to appreciate the finer things in their adulthood. It is very simple to teach them to just say “thank you”. What we’re targeting here is something much bigger. Our aim is to teach them the attitude of gratitude and make is a part of their lifestyle. Here are some interesting ways to do so:
- Be a grateful parent: Monkeys see, monkeys do.
- Encourage them to send thank you notes to friends and family.
- Teach them to share their toys and candies with the less privileged.
They need to learn how to win, but they also need to learn how to lose: Yes, victory is amazing but your little ones need to understand that losing isn’t the end of the world. It so happens that kids who’ve only seen victory do not react well to the smallest of the failures in life. To avoid these kinds of problems, get your child involved in healthy competitions. Play some board games with them, go for some outdoor activities together. Sometimes play as rivals and sometimes play as a group. Lessons learned in this manner go a long way.
Assign chores, like the real ones: When you involve kids into day to day activities of the house, it makes them feel important. When we talk about giving work, it’s the little things we’re referring to. For example, the kid can take up feeding the dog, or setting the dinner table. For younger kids, it can be something as simple as matching the correct socks after laundry. The sole act of contributing towards the family responsibilities is a confidence booster. It makes them feel worthy of handling important tasks.
Spend quality time with your children: “A connected childhood is the key to happiness,” says Edward Hallowell, M.D., a child psychiatrist and author of ‘The Childhood Roots of Adult Happiness.’ He believes that children who are close to their parents and siblings grow up to be happier human beings. There are so many fun and healthy ways to bond with your kids. Exercise together, go for walks, play sports, cook together, play some board games, hug often and laugh a lot.
Praise them the right way: Praise and admiration are very important factors in cultivating the child’s self-esteem and optimism. But, there’s a small catch. It is important that you praise the kid for his efforts and not the final result. It is proven that kids who are admired for their hard work and perseverance, grow up to have a stress-free mindset. Whereas kids who have been congratulated on their wins are constantly under the pressure to do well.
They start to believe that they’re good enough only if they achieve something major or win big in life. The bottom line, praise your kids for the efforts they put in achieving their goals, rather the just the accomplishments.