Life comes with disappointments and as an adult and as parents, we know this very well. Hard as we try, nothing will turn out exactly as we’ve pictured it. We learn as we go along to roll with the punches and acclimate to new situations that are presented to us. This is a mixture of tenacity, perseverance, and positivity, and understandably, you want to teach your child these things.
As parents, we want to give our children the world and have everything laid out for them. We make sure their turn in life won’t be as hard as it was for us or as challenging or treacherous as it was for us. We lay down the foundations into their character. As well as their attitude and their outlook towards life, hoping they’ll use these tools for the best.
They may not completely understand the ins and outs of life and its constant shift from great days and bad. But even at their young age, you can teach your child to be positive in the face of disappointment. Giving them this attitude from a young age will surely benefit them when it’s their time to traverse the world on their own.
Why do we experience negativity? Negativity is a byproduct of fear. When you are unsure, you tend to look at all the outcomes that could possibly happen for a certain situation. Hypothesizing is normal, however, it is when we don’t want to get our hopes up and be disappointed, that we sabotage our own plans by being negative from the outset,
Negativity can be due to having too many disappointments in life and so we tend to expect the worst. This is more true for grown-ups who have had numerous negative experiences who tend to end up cynical and jaded. This is something that can be preventable in our children. As long as we communicate to them their power to turn things around and fostering this attitude into them while they are still young.
Is Negativity Bad?
Surprisingly, it is not! There is no such thing as good and bad emotions. In order to be rid of negativity after having experienced it. Is to feel it for a long as you need to, so that when the time comes, you can also feel happiness just as strongly as you did sadness. Holding negative feelings back will make being cheerful, feeling happy and thinking positively a chore, and positivity being a chore is the last thing you want to teach your child. Holding back negative feelings will only affect you negatively.
Being positive will make you and your child more resilient to whatever the world throws at you, thus making sure that though negative experiences exist, they will not be locked into these negative experiences, and instead you can teach your child to accept the disappointment but be ready to get back up when the time comes. Here are ten ways you can foster positivity in your child.
1). Meditating Kindness And Love
One way you can teach your child to be positive is to practice meditation centered on kindness being wished upon his or her family members. Just about a month of this increases positivity and their connectedness towards others. And since he or she is thinking positively, this also affects their health in the best way possible. Research even suggests that this alters brain circuitry in the most positive of ways.
Meditation is all about conditioning the brain and training it to think differently. The words aren’t of much importance, as long as it’s along the lines of well wishes towards the people in your child’s life. It is better if you also do this with them to increase their awareness of the world and how they see their parents.
It is important that this is done in an encouraging manner and not done forcefully so as to not make this task seem like another chore, tarnishing their initial positive attitudes towards meditation.
2). Instilling A Charitable Attitude
Helping others when you know you get nothing in return and feeling that burst of happiness afterwards is a great feeling. People that volunteer, no matter the nature of their volunteer work have higher self esteem. Having a higher level of self esteem contributes to your child’s outlook of the world and thus their positivity, as confidence is what tells them that they can conquer anything.
Self-worth is often something that can elude us when faced with difficulty. When we give to others, we in fact bolster this. Teaching your child that helping out and giving to others. Volunteer work and charitable efforts are what gives them purpose and instills self-worth. You can start doing this by showing them yourself and making this a family tradition.
3). Being Thankful For The Small Things
You have to teach your child that their happiness does not come from what they can by or gain from someone else, but instead from the small things. This instills gratefulness in them and when fostered from an early age. They’ll know that being with their family. Small happy moments are the only things they need to remain happy and remain grateful and positive in life.
To do this, you can have them start a journal wherein they write down what they are thankful for on the daily. This is another way of conditioning them to be grateful no matter what it is that they have.
4). Setting Goals And Achieving Them
Teach your child that positivity alone cannot carry them through life, and that actually acting upon their goals will. Despite how discouraging this may seem on its face, this allows your child to view life realistically. Putting their wishes, goals, and plans down on paper fosters positivity by showing them that what they want isn’t really that out of reach. Crossing out every goal or plan will be a gradual climb that will make them feel accomplished.
5). A Shining Example
You cannot simply convince your child that being positive can help them greatly in life, but you can model it for them and be a shining example. Being that adulthood and parenthood are fraught with challenges, use this as a teaching opportunity for your child. Of course there are things you should leave out, but it’ll serve them well to know that the parents they look up to face challenges but are still positive and driven towards making things better.
Minimizing your own negativity around them by withholding negative coping mechanisms from them. Maintaining a calm and positive demeanor will show them how to be when it is their time to step into adulthood. They will think of you in critical moments, and they will thank you for this.
6). Developing Skills
What better way to foster confidence than to enroll them in a class or have them participate in an activity? Where they can feel accomplished and gain skills for the future? Whether it be a martial arts class or a cooking class, the tangible reminders of achievement upon graduating can be hung up onto their wall where they will always see them. In the case that they aren’t so good at one type of activity, you can easily bring them around to another, teaching them about hard work and perseverance.
7). Positive Affirmations
Some of us may see positive affirmations as corny, but they actually work. This is another way of programming your child’s mind until they believe it. Have them repeat a set of phrase they can use for when life is challenging. Every night or morning is preferable, so the affirmations are fresh in their mind before to go off to school. Phrases such as I am enough, unique, brave confident, etc., are the best ones to instill.
8). Positivity In Practice
Your child has just experienced their first let down. Maybe a failed science project or one of a more social nature. Take advantage of the situation by letting them know that they tried their hardest. This is just another opportunity to learn. If it is more of a social experience where they’ve experienced losing a friend, you can always say, “You put your all into that friendship, and you were a great friend.”
9). Be Their Eyes On The Outside
Kids grow up, and as we all know from our own experience. We become more aware of our flaws and more critical of ourselves. You must always be there to turn around a negative statement about themselves into a positive one. E.g our child suggests that she or he hates a certain physical attribute, you encourage them by letting them know that their grandfather or grandmother had that feature. That they are the strongest people you’ve ever known.
10). Discourage Complaining
Instead of focusing on what you don’t have, teach your child to acknowledge. What they can do about this obstacle and how they plan to remedy it. Granted their grievances may only be of a minute nature. It will serve them well to go towards a solution after they’ve whined and complained. This will teach them how to problem solve and look towards the positive change they can cause instead of the current negative situation.