As important as it is for parents to express their love and support for their children, it is just as important that children learn to create this feeling for themselves. It is empowering to create a positive belief in yourself without the help of other people. As children, we quickly learn and change behaviors.
We develop our belief systems that mold who we are and how we see ourselves and the world around us as we grow. From our environments- our family/friends, media, and role models – we learn and are influenced to think a certain way, both good and bad. Negative beliefs about ourselves can significantly impact our lives and may be hard to shift and change when we grow older.
Positive affirmations are phrases or statements that challenge negative or unhelpful thoughts. This tool can be used to encourage, motivate, and boost an individual’s self-confidence and neutralize their subconscious pattern of negative thoughts about themselves. We must learn to take control of our belief system at a young age, and this is why learning positive affirmations early on can be highly beneficial.
Here are a few that you can include in your daily routine:
- I am safe.
- I am strong, inside and out.
- I am smart.
- I am loved.
- I am a kind friend.
- I am a good listener.
- I am enough as I am.
- I can do anything I put my mind to.
- I am supported in talking about my feelings.
- I believe in myself.
- I can do hard things.
- I do my very best every day.
- I love myself.
- I am brave.
- I am important.
Now that we have a few affirmations to go through with your child, the question is, how do we start the conversation with our children surrounding the use of positive affirmations? How best can we make this practice not only a habit but an enjoyable experience?
Introducing positive affirmations to children isn’t as difficult as it may seem as it only requires an introduction to their daily routine. Start by explaining what a positive affirmation is and why it is essential to practice. Model this same behavior in your daily routine so that your child can visually see what this behavior looks like and can copy it.
Here are a few helpful tips on how to normalize this behavior for your young ones:
- Start by placing positive affirmation cards around the home. You can choose any of the fifteen we have provided – it’s an easy starting point!
- Make a poster calendar containing a list of these positive affirmations that can be repeated each day or whenever possible.
There may come a situation where your child may become easily bored with the process; when this occurs, pick just one word to repeat at least three times each day to themselves.
Positive Affirmations are a powerful and holistic way of building a positive mind and, therefore, happier children. Repeating one to three positive phrases each day can help fight cyclical patterns of negative thinking and aid in building up and maintaining a healthy self-esteem!