Something that we need to mention right off the bat is that our children don’t even know how much we value kindness and it needs to change ASAP.
When we ask parents what they would like their children to be like when they grow up, they’re known to mention words such as compassionate, caring, and kind.
However, when we ask children the same thing, they’re more like to bring up good grades, success, and happiness. Before someone argues how there’s nothing wrong with that, that’s not the reason why we’re bringing that up.
Children are smarter than we might think.
When children observe the world around them, more times than not, they’re met with people (parents, peers, and teachers) who praise them for getting good grades. But, we don’t praise them for being generous; or celebrate them for scoring a goal at a football game but not for being compassionate.
Because of that, children grow up thinking that they’re better off chasing success rather than chasing a ball with their friends, standing out rather than standing up for their peers, and waiting for their parents to validate them rather than uncovering validation within themselves.
But, why is it so important to raise your child to be kind?
1. Kindness builds empathy
What more do we want for our children than to be empathetic?
With empathy, you can count on your child to become more open and tolerant towards other children, foster better relationships (with the teacher, classmates, or friends), and build stronger connections.
When you teach your child to be kind to others, you affect pretty much every aspect of your child’s life. Keep up the good work, momma!
2. Kindness combats bullying
Nowadays, we’re bombarded with heartbreaking, harrowing news of school shootings, peer-on-peer violence, and bullying.
We’re aware that there are numerous problems that cause these things to happen and circumstances we can’t even fathom. However, we do need to wonder whether teaching our children to be kind to one another would make a difference.
A child that’s been taught to treat others with respect, care, and compassion would rarely bully anyone That child who’s affectionate and appreciative of everyone would rarely be bullied. It’s a win-win situation!
3. Kindness builds confidence
OK, what better way to build your child’s confidence than to practice kindness? When you make little acts of kindness an everyday occurrence, a routine the two of you do together, you’re guaranteed to give your child a sense of purpose and a sense of “I matter, and what I do matters.”
We, as grownups, often forget that even the smallest of gestures can make a difference. Whether you pick up the groceries for your neighbor, write a thank you note to the teacher, or hug someone, make sure your child knows how big these little things are.
4. Kindness makes children happier
With the way things have been over the past few years, we’re not even surprised that most parents think that they’re supposed to surprise their children with new iPhones or overpriced sneakers to make them happy – we have social media to thank for that.
But that’s not the case, though. When one of my friends asked my youngest why she keeps writing words of affirmation on rocks and placing them on the street for strangers to find, she responded, “Because that makes me happy.” What an amazing response!
5. Kindness makes children healthier
We’re not making things up, we promise!
Now, think about this – children who are depressed, stressed out, and suffering from anxiety are much more likely to have a weakened immune system, get sick, and stay sick for longer, right?
Children who are happy, positive, and calm, on the other hand, have better overall health, lower blood pressure, and a stronger heart. Not to mention that happy children have a better chance to maintain a healthy lifestyle that’s going to allow them to live better and longer.
6. Kind children have more friends
Who’s surprised by that?
Children who are quick to help their classmates with homework, give them compliments, and treat them with respect have more friends. We can’t forget that children who have a kind mindset aren’t likely to bully their classmates or be bullied, either.
We need to teach our children that kindness matters more than getting better grades (“How did John get an A, he’s not smarter than you!?”) or owning better things than their classmates (“If John can have an iPhone, so can you!”).
7. Kind children are better behaved at home
When you’re a parent to more than one child, you know what we’re talking about. The fighting. The bickering. The screaming about who gets the bigger end of the chocolate bar.
When you teach your children to be generous, caring, and compassionate, you won’t have to worry about them hurting each other over a Mars bar. Teaching them kindness encourages them to share, understand each other’s boundaries, and respect each other’s wishes.
8. Kind children build a better community
Children are our future, aren’t they? When we raise our children the right way, we can expect them to build a better community than we did.
Our children are going to respect each other’s differences, treat each other with the utmost understanding, and speak with care and compassion. On top of that, they’re going to raise their children to do the same.
9. Kindness builds emotionally intelligent children
When you respond to your children’s needs with empathy, you’re teaching them how to navigate the myriad of feelings and emotions they’re going through.
When you make sure they’re treating themselves with the same compassion they’re showing to others, you’re teaching them the power of kindness. At the end of the day, emotionally intelligent children are those that understand the power of kindness.
10. Kindness makes the world a better place
What better way to end the article, right?!
With everything we mentioned beforehand, we can conclude that kindness makes the world a better place and that’s the biggest reason why you need to teach your sons and daughters to be kind.