Do you remember the most recent conversation you had with your child? What words were chosen to convey your thoughts? What emotions were conjured in your child? And what was the outcome of that interaction? Often, we get caught up in the hectic pace of life, and our words are nothing more than barking orders as opposed to encouragement, our tone, edgy and blunt. Undeniably, this has an effect on our children.
Case in point.
Getting ready for school in the morning. “Eat your breakfast!” “Brush your teeth!” “Get dressed!” “Pack your bag!” “Move faster!” “You’re so slow!”
Later that day. “What? You lost your book again? “Why are you are so careless?”
I’ll be honest and say that this is probably an exaggerated example. But as parents we must be more cognizant of what we speak. We must keep in mind that the words we use have great power. It can make a huge difference in your relationship with your child, their confidence, their self-esteem and their overall emotional wellbeing. It can leave a lasting mark; while we might forget the conversations we have had with them, our words, be it good or bad, linger on in their memories. This can have a long-term impact on how they perceive themselves and the world around them.
Using words of affirmation and praise can have a lifelong positive effect on your child. A child, who is regularly affirmed and encouraged, is likely to have greater self-awareness, confidence and resilience, and be capable of building positive, healthy relationships with others.
Here are a few ways you can affirm your child today!
Speak Praise to Them—just pause in an unexpected moment and say, “Hey, I just want you to know I’m proud of you, because . . . . .” or “Hey, I want you to know you’re really doing a great job in . . . . . . ”
Speak Highly of Them In Front of Others—When they can hear you, speak up to others about some of the ways you see them growing, doing right, or working hard. They will rise in their attempt to live up to your account!
Spend Time With Them—They know you’re busy, so giving them quality time will speak loudly as to your love and honour toward them.
How have you affirmed your child today? Tell us in the comments below.