Our children will believe most things to be true, and are open to suggestion, particularly up until the age 7, so what can we do to build positive beliefs in our children and create a happy and harmonious family unit.
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Creating different states in our children
We have a lot more influence than it may first appear when we think about how to create better states in our kids.
Instead of verbally trying to change an unwanted behaviour in your child. ie Stop nagging, stop fighting, stop being mean etc, you may want to consider what you are focusing on:
FOCUS ON THE POSITIVES
Remember, what you put your attention on, expands. So what would you like to expand in your child? Their kindness, their joy, their complaining or their inability to share. If we can focus only on their positives and give less attention to their bad behaviour, then we will see more of the good stuff.
Don’t assume that your child knows what they are doing right in life, as typically we tend to tell people what they are doing wrong, not what they are doing right. Set yourself a period of time, say 2 weeks and during this time, focus only on their positive behaviour and acknowledge with them. Ignore as best you can, any behaviour that you don’t want to expand. Act like a scientist and after this period is up, notice the reality that you have started to experience.
People who feel good about themselves tend to have higher levels of self esteem, and there is a link between a person’s self esteem and their behaviour.
If you do need to acknowledge bad behavior, it can be helpful to look at your child in 2 parts that of their Identity and their Behaviour.
1. Identity: Their Identity is who they think they are, this is their core being, they will begin to build strong beliefs about themselves.
2. Behavior: Their behavior is on the other hand, transient, just an action, which changes moment to moment, depending on their thoughts and feelings.
So intend to direct any negative comments at the ‘behavioural level’ of your child and any positive comments at the ‘Identity level'
Identity: You are so smart, You are very creative, You are so funny, so caring etc. Remember that they spend a lot of time in alpha and theta brainwave cycles, open to believing your comments. These are great beliefs for them to have about their identity.
Behaviour: "What you just did then wasn’t very thoughtful, Do you realize how hurtful that can be, when you speak like that to your sister?” This way you are not attacking their identity, that remains intact, you are aiming your comments only at a behaviour, which isn’t them and they can easily let go of this. Once they start to identify themselves with this behaviour, it will become a belief and will be a lot harder to shift.
Good luck with this and remember in time this will become a new habit. Though sometimes we all have a wobble, depending on our state of mind at the time - so be patient with yourselves. Your clarity and positivity will always return.
This is part of the human condition.