To say life is busy is an understatement. In between work and family demands, there are probably days when you forget to mind your manners. The thing is, if you’re a parent, it’s important to teach your children the value of both positivity and kindness. But when it comes to teaching them which words to use, not to mention when, you might wonder when the time is right. Below are a few great ways to start teaching your kids the importance of being nice to others.
The Importance of Kindness
While we all know how important it is to treat people with love, we don’t always do our best to do so. Maybe you were too busy with work and didn’t notice that colleague who wasn’t feeling their best. Alternatively, maybe you were having financial struggles and weren’t sure if you could afford it. You might have snapped at your spouse or child. They walked away hurt, not knowing how to tell you. Then, as you sat thinking there was no hope, you had an idea. You could apply for scholarships online.
So, you did a quick search and found a site where you could input your info and be matched with a variety of different scholarships and grants. Immediately, you saw the answer. It was Going Merry scholarships, exactly what you needed to get the ball rolling. Think about how not using kindness affected your family. When things aren’t going right, it’s easy to forget how important it is to be kind. After all, you’re angry and you need to let it out. But once you felt better, you didn’t realize how your words impacted others. That’s where the issues lie.
How Words Hurt
When we say words hurt, we’re not talking about curse words. After all, those are a given and should never be used towards loved ones. However, there are other words you should stop using that can cause just as much damage as well. Making snide statements, criticizing and insulting people can be devastating to those on the receiving end. Even if you feel genuinely sorry, you also need to figure out why you said hurtful things to people you care about.
If you and your spouse were having an argument and you lost your temper, maybe you said something hurtful about their weight. That statement not only made him feel embarrassed, but he also felt unwanted. The impact of hurtful words lasts longer than you think. It’s not uncommon for resentment to build up over time. Then, even if it’s only a minor disagreement, those same hurt feelings and harsh words reappear, possibly putting a wedge between you and your spouse.
Everyone has their own style of communication. Some people like to hash things through while others like to take time for themselves, think about the issue and then return to the conversation. Regardless of your communication style, you need to find ways to approach even hot button topics with kindness. If you’re upset that your teenager broke a vase, what do you do? You could yell and call them careless. While it may feel like it’s warranted, you still need to lead with love. The better solution would be to tell them that while you are quite angry, and really don’t want to hear excuses, you do understand that it was an accident. This type of communication lets them know how you feel without making them feel even worse than they already do.
The Power of Kindness
You never really know what someone is going through. Even if they seem happy, they could be hiding their true feelings. That said, being kind can literally change someone’s outlook. In fact, something as innocuous as thank you or please, can put a smile on someone’s face. When we use kind words, it shows the other person that they’re important to you. Positivity is also contagious, so once you start sharing kindness, it has a rippling effect. Others will want to pass it on as well.
Practice What You Preach
As funny as it might sound, kindness takes practice. That’s not to say you’re not a genuinely nice person, however, it’s not always easy to put on a happy face. Life can be hard, and you might not want to go out of your way to be extra nice. But you know what? When you’re feeling down or even angry, a little bit of kindness can change your entire mood. Just like kind words can make someone feel happy, being kind can make you feel better too. This is a great way to practice self-care at home that will translate to the other areas of your life. The best way to get into the kindness habit is by setting goals. Every day, tell at least one person something nice. Whether it’s a compliment or a sincere thank you, it will eventually become second nature.
Author: Drew Allen is a financial enthusiast, seasoned blogger, music and sports fanatic. He enjoys spending time outdoors with his wife and daughter fishing and boating. He is dedicated to his 20+ year career in the banking, mortgage, and personal finance industry.