Fill your Kids with Good

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Kids today can be so mean. It seems like every day I hear of another child being bullied or mistreated by their peers. Now, I’m not saying kids weren’t hateful when I was a kid, way back in the nineteen hundred and eighties; but man, it just seems so much worse these days. I don’t know what’s causing it. Are the parents jerks? Doest the anonymity the internet has given us allow us to be ugly? Is it all the high fructose corn syrup?? That has to be it, right? 

I was thinking about all the ugliness our kids will face and had a thought that blew my mind. I know. I blow my own mind. But in light of all the grossness that our kids see and hear, we need to be all the more diligent in filling them with KIND, ENCOURAGING, LIFE-GIVING words. What if everyone did that? What if we all raised kids who knew how to encourage instead of how to tear down? Can you even imagine?

I’m certainly not suggesting that I’m perfect at this or that my kids are perfect angels. I have one who has no filter and says exactly what’s in the brain. It’s put me in some weird spots with parents. But I am suggesting that we intentionally think about what we are filling our kids with. The filter will come later. The fruit may not be seen for years. That’s ok. I’m also not of the thought that we should give our kids empty compliments and false confidence. I’m simply suggesting that we fill our kids with so much good that when the bad tries to sneak in, it will have nowhere to go. A by-product would be them learning to do the same for others and, eventually, their own kids. 

fill your kids with good

So here are some things to do:

  1. Remind your kids that you are on their side…every single day. They need to know they have a soft place to land when the world beats them up. Because it will.
  2. Keep communication open by not discounting or dismissing their concerns even if it’s something you deem ridiculous. Recently, my 10 year old son wore a Dallas Cowboys hat to the gym. A big kid walked by and said, “Hey little kid, the Cowboys suck,” and laughed at the stricken look on my son’s face. He had no idea how to respond, but he told me about the incident later. He wasn’t embarrassed to talk to me because we talk openly about everything. 
  3. Tell your kids you are proud of them and why. Tell them you love them as a person and why. Tell them you notice they are growing and maturing inwardly. THESE are the good things! Kids are much more than the sum of their athletic skills, academic prowess, or artistic abilities. They need to understand that you love them for WHO THEY ARE because the world will only love them for WHAT THEY CAN OFFER. 
  4. Look them in the eye. Hug them. Play with them. BE with them. Their peers will never give them the same unconditional love and acceptance that you can give them. Don’t be afraid to cry with your boys. Or to tell your daughter that she’s brave and strong and capable.

We only have a short time with our kids to instill in them all the good, positive things that will help combat the negative they’ll encounter. Let’s make it our mission to send our kids out into the world armed with the knowledge that they are loved and cherished.