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Teach Your Children to Be Responsible For Their Thoughts

One of the most important lessons we need to teach our children is:      

You alone are responsible for your thoughts. You choose what to think.

Teach your children that they control how they feel about problems. They can choose to worry about them, complain about them or blame someone else for them. But, nothing will be resolved until they take responsibility for them.

Once they understand that they can choose not to worry, complain or blame, they can take the next step and deal with the situation.

Teach your children that when life hands them a difficult situation, don't complain about it. See the challenge and accept it. Find a solution.

  • Encourage them to look for any positive in the problem and work on it.

  • Assure them that when they find the solution, they will become stronger and things will get easier

  • Teach them to find a mantra for when problems pop up unexpectedly. This will teach them to immediately start looking for a solution instead of focusing blame or complaining. The mantra could be: "this is my responsibility", or "I choose how to fix this", or even "I own this problem".

Scenario: Jacob comes home from school with an F on his Geography paper.
"My teacher hates me." (complaining/blaming)
"I'll never learn this." (worry)
Many parents would simply say, "Don't be silly. Your teacher doesn't hate you. You need to study more."

This causes problems in several ways:

  • You are putting down your child's feelings by telling him he is silly.

  • You are making a problem seem like it doesn't matter to you.

  • You are doing nothing to counter his feeling that he will never learn.

  • Instead, try encouraging your child to be responsible for his thoughts and find a solution. Try something like this: "What proof do you have that your teacher hates you? Is that a fact or is it just how you feel right now?"

When your child understands that he controls what he thinks about how his teacher feels, then you can move on to his statement "I'll never learn this."

Again, it boils down to his responsibility for his thoughts. "Is that a fact, or is that just the way you feel right now. What can I do to help?"

Help your child find a solution for his problem and soon he will be finding solutions on his own.

There are so many things to teach our children. With a little anticipation, we can learn to find teachable moments and incorporate them into everyday life. These little "lifetips" will build a foundation on which your child can build a very successful, happy life.


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