Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Kindness: A How-To Guide

One of the hardest things for me as a parent is seeing my kids be mean to each other, mean to others, mean to themselves. Kindness is a value I take pretty seriously and is something we've tried and tried and tried to teach our children.

Kids are kids, I get that. Which means sometimes they are mean or selfish or argumentative.

Kind of like adults.

I feel like I'm always encouraging my kids to be kind, to show kindness to others.

And it struck me that maybe it's hard to do that if you don't understand exactly what kindness is supposed to look like.

I made them a list. We're going to work on it this summer. And I realized that a lot of it might apply to adults the same as to kids. So read it over - tell me what I missed!

How to Be Kind

Use Manners

·       Say “yes, sir” or “yes ma’am,” - especially to people who are older.
·       Show respect in public by behaving. This is being kind to the other people in the restaurant or store.
·       Think of others around you before you think of yourself.

Be A Friend

·       Invite others to play – especially someone who has no one to play with.
·       Do what someone else wants to do – not just what you want to do.
·       Don’t always be right. Other people feel special when they get to be right, when their idea is chosen.
·       Listen to others. When we take time to listen, we get new ideas, we might be able to help someone with a problem, we make someone else feel important.

Be Caring

·       Think about how someone else might be feeling.
·       Pay attention to your inside feelings – if something feels wrong or mean or yucky, how can you make a different choice?
·       When you see someone is hurting or upset, try to help them feel better. Especially if you caused the hurt but even if you didn’t. A smile, help getting up, telling someone else to stop being mean… those are choices that change lives.

Say Your Prayers

·       Ask God to help you love people better, love them more.
·       Thank God for things that happened or things you saw that day.

·       Let God know what you wish you would have done differently that day.

sig jan 2014 photo owlsig.jpg

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