Sunday, 23 May 2010

Be proud of your kids, because God is proud of His!

Last night Molly and I went to Dudley’s pancake shop in Barnet to celebrate her doing, yesterday morning, the first of many GCSE exams that she has in the next three weeks. It just seemed right to treat her because I am so proud of how much work she has put into preparing for these exams, the results really don’t seem that important as I have seen how hard she has worked to attain her best.

Children thrive on heartfelt praise and recognition from their parents and carers. Growing up knowing that you are valued and enjoyed makes you more receptive to love, more able to receive positive feedback and to be able to give and receive affection naturally and easily. Children who never hear words of love from their parents tend to be suspicious of compliments and lack self esteem. Children who are accustomed to constant negativity in the home have difficulty accepting the slightest praise as though they are unable to let love in.

I love telling my children how proud I am of them, they are the best and most beautiful ‘Molly’ and ‘Alice’ in the world (as far as I am concerned!). Some parents only brag when their children are not around because they don’t want their children to get a ‘big’ head. I was one of those people when my two were little, until one wise mum said to me “There is nothing wrong with being a proud Mum and telling them”, so now I do both! I recommend honest praise for your children, to them and in front of them. Don’t worry about it going to their heads, they seem to keep it all in balance and in my experience it doesn’t spoil them in any way, just enhances their characters.

Children especially need to know you are proud of them when they have failed; telling them that you are proud of their efforts, with words like “I am really proud that you tried so hard and congratulations for hanging in there”. It’s important that they know the difference between failing at a task and being a failure. When a dejected six year old heads your way, sad that they weren’t top of the class in the spelling test this week they surely deserve a huge ice-cream for trying so hard to learn those spellings in the first place!

Be proud of your children. Water them with words of love. Just like plants they will soak up the ‘water’ and they will thrive.

2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 (New Living Translation)
Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope, comfort you and strengthen you in every good thing you do and say.

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