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Challenge: Raising Kind Kids

10 Traits of Families Who Raise Kind Kids

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Raising kind children is one of my top priorities. There are times when I see the fruits of that labor and times when I don’t. There are times when I get scared that I am failing at this task, this responsibility that I have created as a foundation to our family means a lot to me. It is also a foundation for the work I get to do with clients. So, for better or worse, in good times and bad, here are some of the things that we do to try to raise truly kind children:

  • 1.Model Kindness- like the old adage goes actions speak louder than words- be kind to strangers, neighbors, family members, drivers, teachers, bus drivers. Show your kids to treat everyone with respect.
  • 2.Extend Grace- when your kids mess up- they stain something, they spill, they rip, they forget, show them grace. Smile at them, problem solve, express empathy and understanding that we are all human and make mistakes every day. And don’t hold grudges.
  • 3.Be Charitable- give, give, give. Even when times are tough give of your time, your resources and your talents. Your actions will once again speak volumes in how your children approach the world and they will learn to value community and those less fortunate than them.
  • 4.Save, Give, Spend- teach your kids this as young as possible and then it won’t be an issue when they are older. Teach them as toddlers if they get 5 dollars they should save 2, spend 1 and give 2- or however you want to divide it up but be consistent and your kids will learn the concepts of saving and charity while still in preschool!
  • 5.Gratitude- every day express what you are grateful for. Some days people tell me are harder than others, but teach your kids to never take the things for granted such as their health, their senses, food, safety and love to name a few.
  • 6.Love Oneself- so many adults are hard on themselves. Parents often do not realize that they are modeling self-loathing by making comments about their appearance, weight or intelligence. Be aware that you need to love yourself to fully be present and loving to others.
  • 7.Have Faith- this can be believing in a high power or having faith in humanity. Whichever it is for you, show your children that the world is full of more good than bad and that we are each stronger with the love and support of others.
  • 8.Praise Kindness- when you see your child engage in patience, generosity, and love praise that behavior. Teach them that you are there to also notice the good that they do- character is built upon someone telling you that they like it when they are treated in a positive way.
  • 9.Address Rudeness- I often see parents let children get away with talking in sassy ways or like I put it bluntly- just rudely. Let your kids know when they have crossed a boundary with you or someone else. And let them know how it makes you feel when you are spoken to that way- they have to understand this is something that hurts your feelings not just makes you mad or embarrassed.
  • 10.Humility- enough can’t be said about being humble and modest in all that you do. By approaching life this way it shows your children better sportsmanship, relationship building and being a person who others are drawn to because being in your presence allows them to have the space to be talented and gifted too.

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