Compliment one of your kids today

Good Job Smiley Face

Quality affirmation given in a natural, intentional manner yields great results—trust, openness, self-confidence, and a willingness to take more risks. Affirmation need not only focus on a child’s successes, but also a child’s fierce engagement with struggle.

Here are a few models of friendly feedback you can use to help you enhance that parent-child bond:

  • Your voice is loud! I can hear it all the way across a room! That’s fabulous.
  • You were careful coming through that door with the folding chair. I noticed! Thank you.
  • It’s hard to nap. Thanks for trying to get to sleep on your own for ten minutes before getting up to ask me when the nap would be over. Let’s try ten more, shall we?
  • Wow. When you get deeply involved in your game, you can’t even hear me call for lunch. You really know how to focus when you are absorbed.
  • I appreciate your offer to help. That’s really nice of you.
  • You sure know a lot about __________. Must take real concentration to hold onto all those details.
  • That smile of yours? It always makes me a little happier. Thank you.
  • I can tell you are hurting. It’s okay to cry. Strong people cry—it’s a way to let go and recover from sadness.

You get to help define how your kids interpret their experiences. You can do that using positive reinforcements of their natural reactions, and also their attempts to be helpful or to be heard or to caretake themselves.

Affirm one of your kids today—look for opportunities to enhance your child’s self-understanding.

And then make sure you follow up and compliment each of the other ones, each of the remaining days this week and into next week if you need it! Put it on the calendar to remind yourself.

Cross-posted on facebook. Image by Steven Depolo (cc)

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