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Teach and Instill Positive Thinking For Children

Teaching and encouraging positive thinking for children is now becoming more and more important for parents and educators alike because they realize the importance of having children grow up with a mindset and psychology that helps them achieve long term and lasting success.

Why is it vital for children to think positively?

It is important to encourage positive thinking for children because the core personality and habits of an individual is developed at childhood. So it is imperative that good habits and psychology are encouraged before it is shaped by the environment.

If someone has grown up being conditioned to think negatively, it is difficult to erase and replace those many years of conditioning.

It is much easier and faster to condition a child from young rather than to try to change someone later on after they have developed bad habits and negative beliefs.

Apart from that, experiences in the earlier years largely determines the level of success that an individual experiences for the rest of his or her life. That is not to say that there is no hope for future achievement, but it just means that the journey to future success becomes more difficult as a result of it.

Set a good example

Children learn most from their parents or chosen rolemodel(s). If the parent has a negative mindset, then it is likely that the child will pick it up as well. It doesn't matter what is being taught to the child. The parent may encourage the child to think positively, but if their actions still show negativity, the child will be aware of it and still pick that up.

Actions speak louder than words.

Apart from that, all of us can also be affected by negativity. A person may have a positive mindset, however when in the presence of someone really negative, he or she may be adversely affected by that negative energy, depending on how sensitive he or she is. This ultimately influences and makes them feel negative as well.

Discipline, encouragement and consistency

It is always a tricky situation for a parent or a teacher to balance between being strict to discipline the child or to teach and nurture through positive encouragement. On the one hand, you would want to be positive and encourage the child as much as possible. But on the other hand, there is the fear that doing so may have negative consequences, for example spoiling the child.

Neither approach is better than the other. Both encouraging positively and being a disciplinarian has it's own advantages and disadvantages. However, if both are used wisely and depending on the situation, this will give you the perfect compromise.

For example being strict about imparting good values (respect, empathy etc), but being positive when it comes to learning or the picking up of a new skill.

The one thing to keep in mind is that when it comes to responding to mistakes made by the child, try not to respond negatively. The last thing you want to do is to make the child associate emotional pain with making mistakes.

Many successful people are successful because of they view mistakes and setbacks as opportunities to learn and grow. This response allows them to keep a positive mindset at all times despite things not going their way.

Mistakes should be encouraged and learned from.

Framing experiences and using empowering vocabulary

One way to encourage positive thinking for children is by pre-framing experiences beforehand so that it will take on a positive (or a less negative meaning) for the child. This is because ultimately, the interpretation of an experience is more important than the experience itself.

If a child is trained to interpret an experience in a positive light, no matter how poor the situation is, he or she will automatically pre-frame the experience and interpret any result positively and from an overall big picture perspective.

Pre-framing or re-framing an experience can be done through the clever use of vocabulary. The words that you use when communicating with children will be a factor in determining the mindset that they develop.

How is that so?

By labeling an experience with a certain word, we end up experiencing the meaning of that word instead of what we were actually feeling in the first place.

For example, when you say 'I am enraged' instead of 'I am annoyed', the intensity of the negative emotion that you feel will be stronger. This is caused by the inherent association that we make to the meaning and understanding of a word.

Simple as it sounds, the words that you use will affect what you experience to a certain extent.

So what this means is for a parent or teacher to use more positive words and avoid using negative words when communicating or describing a situation to children.

Final Thoughts…

These are just some ideas and tips to encourage positive thinking for children. There are other approaches that are not mentioned here which you can try out. No matter what you decide to do, remember the key is to remain congruent and consistent. That itself will largely determine how successful you are in instilling positive thinking for children.

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