5 Ways To Inspire Kindness In Your Children
One of the most important character traits we can teach and encourage in our children is that of kindness. Kindness goes a long way in this world, and an attitude of compassion affects not only the people around us, but also our own attitude and outlook on life. Kids naturally gravitate toward acts of kindness, so it’s really not difficult to inspire it in them on a daily basis. Here are five ways to inspire kindness in your children.
1. Teach Common Courtesy
Saying “please” and “thank you” might not seem like much when it comes to instilling kindness, but it actually helps children learn gratitude and consideration of others. Small acts like holding a door for someone or helping to bring in the groceries can be far-reaching in raising thoughtful adults.
Starting from an early age, children should learn to politely ask for what they want and show gratitude when they receive it. Parents too, should always remember to say please and thank you to their children, even for expected things like chores, so children understand how it feels to be on the receiving end of gratitude as well.
2. Respect The Planet
Picking up trash and recycling not only shows kindness toward our planet, it also shows respect for others in general. No one wants to see trash lying around, and by teaching your kids to throw their own trash away in the proper receptacles, as well as to clean up trash when they find it, they will learn respect and kindness for both the earth and the people living on it. Many towns have national clean up days where everyone participates in beautifying their area, and these can be a great way to show kids how cleanup and recycling can be a positive for everyone.
3. Fundraiser Birthday Party
While birthday parties are always fun, it can be a little overwhelming for both parents and kids when they are inundated with gifts and toys that they most likely don’t need. Consider a fundraiser birthday party, where instead of birthday presents, each attendee brings something to donate to a cause that the birthday boy or girl holds dear.
Whether it’s new pet toys and beds for an animal shelter, books to donate to local reading programs or gift packages for seniors that can be shared at the local nursing home, this is a concrete way for kids to pay it forward and be part of their community.
4. Get A Pet
If you feel your child is ready for the responsibility of pet ownership, and your home and lifestyle can accommodate the care pets require, consider adding a furry or feathered friend to the mix. Pets are beneficial to our lives in a myriad of ways, one of which is helping both children and adults increase their EQ, or emotional intelligence levels.
EQ, which measures empathy and connection with others, is vital to human growth and development. Pets help to teach empathy, relieve stress, improve mood and give children the gift of considering the needs of another being that depends on them.
5. Be Kind Yourself
The old adage of children “learning what they live” is very true when it comes to kindness. As children navigate the world, their eyes are always on us, learning by the examples we set and the actions we take every day. In teaching kindness to our children, we can inspire ourselves and others to treat everyone the way we would like to be treated.