After years of working with children at my Naperville martial arts school, I noticed several key themes that help children grow and feel stable.
Building rock Solid Kids is no easy task.
Here is Ten Things Your Child NEEDS to know in order to be Happy, Healthy and Confident.
You are in their corner. Sometimes children are afraid that their parent’s love is conditional. They fear that if they make a mistake, or get into trouble, they risk losing their parents love. Constantly reassure your child that you will always love them, and be there for them…no matter what. Say to them, “I am on your side!”
Family comes first. As kids get older, friends become more and more important. In some ways, this is healthy. Sometimes, though, kids have trouble when they start to think their friends are more important than their family. Friends are great, especially when you have a solid family foundation. Beginning when your children are very small, build a strong sense of loyalty to your family. Make being part of your family something to be proud of!
It doesn't matter what other people say, think or do. Your family will be following its own standards. You won't be swayed by what other families are saying, thinking or doing. Explain to your child, “There will be LOTS of things that other people are doing—that we won’t be doing. There will also be lots of things that other people aren’t doing that we will be doing. We do things differently in our family. Get used to it!”
The Portrait of a bright future. Paint a bright future for your child. Every possibility is open. Friends, good health, a nice home, a loving spouse, a fine family, exciting adventures…these are in the future of your child! Build your child’s positive expectancy and hope for the future by regularly reinforcing this image!
Privileges are not rights…they must be earned. Problems occur when children begin to think that certain privileges have become their rights. Help your child to understand that social activities, the ability to make their own decisions, allowances, and other privileges need to be earned by good behavior, and the effective handling of responsibilities.
You, as the parent, have the obligation to act in the child’s best interest. Make it clear that you don’t mind making the “tough call.” If you child says, “All the other parents are letting their kids do it!”—you will say, “Honey, it’s my job to do what I think is right for you. I take that responsibility very seriously. If my decisions aren’t popular among your friends, or they cause you to be mad at me…I can live with that”
Patience is a Virtue. Be patient. The world gives up it reward slowly…to those who show dedicated, consistent effort and focus. Often, when people quit, they quit right when they are on the verge of a big breakthrough.
The world is abundant. There is enough happiness, love, opportunity, health and money for everybody. People who experience scarcity are people who believe in scarcity. People who believe in abundance will find it.
Everything counts. Diligence counts. Sloppiness counts. Good manners count. Rude behavior counts. Honesty Counts. So does dishonesty. Everything comes out sooner or later. Do a good deed, and sooner or later, something good comes back to you. Do a bad deed, and even if nobody knows that you did, sooner or later some bad result comes back to you. Sometimes the results, good or bad, take a period of time to come back around. Don’t let your child be fooled! Everything counts!
Take one of these themes per week and focus on them and you will see a dramatic change in your child and be well on your way to building Rock Solid Kids!