Ask your child: “What would make you happier than you are right now?”
Let’s look at some possibilities:
- If I had more friends.
- If I wasn’t bullied.
- If my hair was curly.
- If my hair was straight.
- If I did better in school.
- If I made the basketball team.
- If there was no global warming.
- If I didn’t worry so much.
- If I was taller.
- If I was skinnier.
- If I got a new computer.
- If my teacher was nicer to me.
- If my parents didn’t bug me to do things.
- If my brother stopped teasing me.
- If I had a dog.
- If I could go to Disney World.
This list can be endless. Of course, what happens in our lives and our children’s lives affects them. However, when we completely depend on things around us to make us happy, we take the risk that we will never be happy.
Let’s not leave our happiness entirely to chance.
How can we change this?
How can we feel happy if we have no friends, or fail a test, or a bully picks on us every day? As impossible as this seems, even at times like these, we have the power to be happier. We have the power within us to change the way we feel. And when we learn to do this, we not only change the way we feel, but very often the way others feel around us and the way others behave toward us.
How do you think your child would answer these questions:
- Who are you?
- How do you feel?
- What do you think about?
- What do you like about yourself?
- What don’t you like?
- What makes you, you?
If the answer is “with difficulty” they are not alone. Through addressing questions like these, our children can learn to focus on their perspective of life. These are the seeds for developing a strong sense of self and self esteem. Children need to believe that how they see the world matters.