Kindness still exists. This we can be extremely confident about. We can all be kind in so many ways. Adults included.
Children and young people often receive bad press. They allegedly show no respect for authority and lack discipline. These are common issues which crop up in people's conversations and articles we read.
Negativity will always be spoken about more than positivity. It's just human nature. But how can we make sure we develop our next generations of youngsters into kind, caring folk who can do good by themselves and others?
We as adults can sometimes be our own worst enemy. We may become critical of certain aspects of our life such as parenting or work. This inner voice can become problematic for our own confidence and self-esteem. This runs true with children also especially for a brain which is still developing and working out the world around them – including other voices from peers. Teaching them to be kind to themselves is a great starting point. Giving them the message that it is ok to be a critique on oneself, but ultimately accepting our flaws and seeing our positives will be hugely beneficial for mental well-being. They will slowly begin to accept their own identity and their own unique traits.
Running alongside the notion to look after themselves as people, should be some subtle methods on how to treat others with kindness.
Manners cost nothing and are a very simple but effective way in showing the kids that a positive interaction with another person should be greeted with a please or thank you. We can show them that the world does not revolve around them.
Placing them in situations such as eating at restaurants will mean that an interaction with somebody else will be inevitable - and will be good practice. Opening a door for a person who is struggling to open, is another basic idea.
Kindness comes from simplicity. It gradually builds a picture for the kids to highlight the importance of kindness. Having bonds and friendships with other age groups may give our kids an ability to act with kindness in different ways.
We can show kids awareness of the diverse world in which we all live. Educating ourselves as parents and passing this knowledge on to our children may give them a grounding to be aware of how diverse the human being is. They need to learn that we need to be kind to somebody even if they look or act a little different. Kindness costs nothing. It also makes us feel good.
Take kids to a charity shop and talk to volunteers who work in them. Providing them with a real, solid foundation into the understanding that some people in this world are less fortunate and require help and support and kindness in a variety of ways.
In one simple sentence, we need to remember to instill kindness into our younger generation from an early age. Sometimes before they can offer meaningful kindness to others, we need to teach them how to be kind to themselves first.
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