Kids Nowadays:  From Entitled To Grateful - School Age, Part 3

Kids Nowadays: From Entitled To Grateful - School Age, Part 3

Modern-day parenting has its own unique set of challenges and struggles. One of the most significant challenges is how to connect with your child (ren) in this high-tech world.
We live in a digitalized, distracted, fast-paced society filled with distractions and lack of time. All of this impacts how we parent. Parenting is an experience which mandates mindfulness. Ultimately it is up to us to create time to dial down on all technology and "be".

As parents, often we are invested in making schedules for our kids, signing them up for another activity, sleepover, getting one or more special things for their birthday or holiday, running them around to the events along with balancing other work/home demands. At some point, we start to function on auto-pilot which disengages us from living in the moment.
The truth is - value and meaning of life comes from the moments we are fully present and engaged with our loved ones. No distractions. Just us.
In modern living, we are often robbed of that experience. So how does one break the barriers of distractions and bring gratitude into their family without feeling like it is one more thing on the plate?

Let's begin by emphasizing why gratitude matters in the first place.
Quoting us from our last blog: "Gratitude is an emotion which has been positively linked to human well-being. The studies have shown gratitude helps decrease anxiety, depression, improves sleep, builds empathy and helps with the overall school performance." And one may concur gratitude is vital to the health of the family.

I view the school age is the "fertile" period to plant the seeds of gratitude. By this age, cognitive and emotional skills have matured for children to begin to understand the world around them.

You certainly can build on the ideas we suggested in the previous blog such as storytelling, reading books with a focus on gratitude, filling up gratitude jar and sharing simple acts of kindness.

Here we share a few more tips on what you may consider doing during this age:

1. Ask your child what was the best and "not so good part of the day?"
While it is essential to focus on the positive, getting the insight on "not so good" interpretation will be an opportunity to talk to your child about the learning lessons from the challenging experiences. 
2.  Have your child volunteer or do an act of kindness.  This may take some figuring out what would be the best "place" or "activity" to do, however, let your child's interest be a guiding point.  Here is Sofi, who at age 6 grew her hair and choose to donate for "WigsForKids" charity.  


3.  School age is perfect for introducing the concept of writing "thank you notes" for gifts or kindness acts received.  Handwriting at this time is turning into the lost art, however being able to express and write a gratitude note is invaluable and should be encouraged.   The research has also shown gratitude when expressed in writing 


4.  Gratitude Journal.   Benefits of journaling have been well documented in many research studies.  To list a few - it enhances emotional intelligence, evokes mindfulness, boosts your mood, helps reduce depression.   

Hopefully, this blog outlined and emphasized the simplicity of the steps you can take NOW to lay the foundation and help enhance your child's well-being.
Keep it simple - start with one thing, and give it some time to evolve naturally.
Please keep us up to date with your results, 
To You,
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