It’s so important for parents to live a positive lifestyle. Kids learn through observational learning and imitation. This means kids learn and act according to your behaviors. They imitate your behavior and attitudes. You are their role model. You can overpower the media.
A lot of our personality traits are learned. This is good news. This means your children can learn positive personality traits such as: respect for themselves and others, patience, kindness, empathy, caring, etc.
The best preventive method we can use with our kids is to live a positive, happy lifestyle. If your children see you happy and treating others with respect and kindness, they will follow suit.
The questions you see below will help you become aware of your daily actions. Use these questions daily for at least a week to learn about you and your actions. Keep a journal. Learn what changes you need to make to have a happy home.
Remember, Happy Parents = Happy Children!
1.) How many negative statements did I say today? EX: I can’t wear these pants I look fat.
2.) How many curse words did I use today?
3.) How many negative actions did I do today? Example: How many times did I roll my eyes when my daughter/son keeps asking why? Kids watch non-verbal behaviors. As parents, we need to watch what we say and how we act.
4.) How many times did I give off an attitude?
5.) How many times did I not explain what was wrong with my child’s behavior. Did I not explain why they were punished? Did I use terms such as: Because I said so, Because I’m the adult, Because I’m mom/dad, I don’t have to explain, etc. Remember, if a child doesn’t know what they did wrong, they will keep repeating it.
6.) Did I show love today? How did I act towards my spouse today? Did I give a hug, a kiss, hold my child’s hand, say I love you, etc. Parents, are you treating each other with respect? Children are visual learners. Parents, if you’re not loving and kind to each other, the children will see this and imitate this.
7.) Are your behaviors consistent? Consistency, routine and schedules are the best ways to help prevent discipline issues. As parents, we need to learn to do what we say. Example: If I say “no snacks before dinner” then I must follow the rule for it to stick and have any meaning.
8.) Watch your environment. Are you bringing negative/toxic people into your household?
9.) What is your perspective in the world? Answer these Questions:
What is your perspective on life?
Are you willing to change it?
Where did your perspective come from?
These questions are important because your perspectives/beliefs on the world will affect how you live your life. If you think people are naturally bad, selfish, rude, etc. Then you will have a negative attitude on the world. If you think people are naturally good, caring and kind, this means you have a positive opinion of the world. Whether you see the world as positive or negative will make a huge difference on how you live your life and how you treat others. If your perspectives are negative about the world or if you have specific races, religions, gender, sexual preferences, etc then it will show in your daily life. This will affect your children. Those specific traits are learned. Is negativity what you want to teach your kids?
Change your perspective and you change your view of the world. It’s your choice how you see the world. You pick – Negative or positive?
10.) Room to grow – for kids to live a positive life, they need to have room to grow and freedom to learn/explore. Adults need this as well. If we don’t grow we become stale and stagnate which leads to unhappiness. Give your kids freedom to grow and learn by letting them experiment with new creative ideas whether it’s writing a book, building a tower, planting a garden, taking an art or music class. Let them take a risk – don’t try to stop them ( unless it could hurt them) or make them follow your dreams. Let them figure out their likes, dislikes, interests, strengths and opinions. Let them express themselves freely even if you don’t agree. Kids learn to think independently in their teens, this is normal and expected. It’s ok to have a healthy debate and disagree. This allows each person to express and explain their views/beliefs.
11.) Encourage your children to find themselves – this will encourage a strong sense of self which will build a strong foundation.