How To Raise Good Kids
If you’re a parent or grandparent, raising good children is probably a high priority to you. Putting that into practice on a day to day basis may or may not be as easy as it sounds.
This week I came across an article entitled, “Harvard Psychologists Reveal: Parents who raise good kids do these five things.” If you’d like to read the entire article, I’ll give credit to it at the end of this blog.
For now, here are some highlights with some of my thoughts included. Five things you need to do to raise good kids:
- Spend quality time with your children. It’s simply not enough to just physically be around your children. You need to be with them completely. That means putting down the remote or the phone or whatever device or object that pulls your attention away from them. In “Fierce Conversations”, author Susan speaks about being fierce as in being 100% there in our conversations and not focusing on anything else. Sometimes that’s easier said than done but the benefits of being fiercely there with our children will bring rewards to your relationship and influence with them.
- So, be open in communicating with them. Don’t mask your thoughts or feelings. Share with them.
- Be an active listener. Let them know through your words, body language and tone of voice that you are fully listening to them.
- Make sure that in your daily routines with your children that you are doing things they like to do. Read them a book at bedtime. Play a game of their choosing with them.
- Let your children see a strong moral role model and mentor in you. Take time to think of your children as adults. What do you want them to look and behave like? (thinking with the end in mind). Now look in the mirror and ask yourself if you’re that kind of person. What you practice in your own life will transfer to your children through modeling and influence.
- Talk to your children about what’s important to you and why it’s important for them to embrace those qualities into their lives.
- Make a list of all the qualities you want to instill into your children. Practice them with your children and talk to them about them so they learn to understand why they are important.
- Teach your children to care for others and set high ethical expectations. Your children need to socialize and bond with others in the right ways. Harvard findings say, “It’s very important that children hear from their parents and caregivers that caring about others is a tip priority and that it is just as important as their own happiness.”
- Be consistent in your messages to them, “The most important thing is that you’re kind towards others.”
- Guide them to those biblical principles that teach that we are to love others as ourselves (Matthew 19:19; John 13:34).
- Encourage your children to practice appreciation and gratitude. Gratitude is like a two-way street. People who practice gratitude on a regular basis are more likely to be helpful, generous, compassionate and forgiving. The results of that is your children will be more likely to be happy and healthy.
- A tool I have used over the years is what is called the “Encouragement Circle.” Around the dinner table, lead your family in encouraging one another for the genuine things they see in each other.
- At the same time, it’s a great opportunity to express what and who we are grateful for.
- Teach them to see the big picture. It’s common for us to empathize and care for the people in our circle of family and friends. The challenge is to teach that to our children so their circle is expanded to include others.
- Maybe the new student in class needs empathy and care.
- How about someone who doesn’t speak the same language.
- Widen the circle to include teachers and caregivers.
- Talk to your children about people’s hardships and how they might demonstrate care for them.
Raising good children in today’s culture can be achieved. Let’s raise up the next generation to be great in the Kingdom of God and make a significant difference in our culture.
MAIN SOURCE: Author, Simon Segal
Making Caring Common Project – Harvard University
ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS: Pastor Randy Blatz