Believe in the power of words! Here are three positive things to say to your child.
In this article, you’ll read:
- The power of daily affirmations
- Three positive things to say to your child every day
- How to make affirmations work for your child
“Kind words may be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.” – Mother Teresa
Remember when we as kids learned the “magic words?” Those phrases stuck with us for so long that even now that we have our own children, we remind them to say “Please,” “Excuse me,” and “Thank you.”
While there’s absolutely nothing wrong with those polite words, wouldn’t it be better if the three magic words or phrases we tell them will help them in strengthening their self-esteem and become the foundation of how they see themselves in the future?
Such is the power of words of affirmation.
A happy child becomes a healthy adult.
What are affirmations and why are they powerful?
Simply put, affirmations are words we say that invoke a positive feeling. These words encourage us and strengthen our belief in something, or ourselves. When we’re feeling discouraged or having a bad day, we say positive words to motivate us and push our minds back in the right direction. Studies show that daily affirmations help lower stress and boost problem-solving skills.
The same positive effects are seen on children. Affirmations or positive words help kids in the areas of self-regulation and self-worth
In the article, “The 3 Phrases Your Child Needs to Hear From You Daily” by Ariane de Bonvoisin, the author mentions that children learn from visual, auditory, and kinesthetic (these are the ones that are felt) cues. However, the auditory cue is most often overlooked. A lot of kids and adults end up wondering “I never heard my parents tell me this …”
Moreover, listening to your words, just like other sensory activities, play a crucial role in a child’s brain development. The more you say words of affirmation to your child, the more likely that your child’s brain can process and retain this information.
3 Positive Things to Say to Your Child
Just like Mother Teresa’s words, these three phrases may be short and simple, but if you say this to your child daily, the impact of these words to your child’s self-esteem will be long-term.
These phrases may sound similar to what you’re already saying to your child, but the words and how the sentences are constructed makes a lot of difference to the message we want to convey. De Bonvoisin, a life coach and parenting expert, explains the meaning behind those phrases.
If you want to start saying words of affirmations to your child, you can start with these three powerful phrases:
“You are loved.”
We always say “I love you” to our kids. Isn’t that the same thing? These two phrases look, feel and sound almost the same, but they are not. The difference lies in pronouns.
“I” in “I love you” implies that at love only comes from you, or the speaker. It suggests that this is a love that is dependent on you, and it can change.
It is not as solid as making the pronouncement of “YOU”. When you use the word “You” as the subject, it implies that the child is a priority, and they come first. You, the parent, are not the only source of love. Nothing about them will stop the love from coming.
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2. “You are safe.”
This is such a simple and unromantic phrase, but it has so much power, especially with what is happening around us right now.
Your kid hears the news or a scary story and because they are not aware yet of how the world works, they start making assumptions in their head.
Reminding your kid that they are safe conveys to them that where they are at, the moment, the place, with you is where they can feel secure because they will be safe and will be protected no matter what.
3. “You are good enough.”
This is a big one. De Bonvoisin wrote that a lot of her clients, kids and adults, struggle with perfectionism because they were not told that they were good enough when they were children. They always felt that they need to “do more” to gain the approval of their parents.
A lot of adults are still in this “more” mentality to the point that they burn out and suffer mental health issues.
Telling your child that he is good enough gives your child relief and security that you love and accept him just as he is. They don’t need to do something extraordinary to win your affections and be noticed.
How to make affirmations work.
Words of affirmations work. There’s science behind it. But it’s not magic. You don’t say these words to your child one day and they will grow up to be well-rounded individuals right away. It takes work. Here are some reminders to make these affirmations work for your child.
You need to say these phrases to your child regularly for it to stick to them and make long-lasting impact. According to psychotherapist Ronald Alexander of The Open Mind Training Institute, affirmations can be repeated up to five times a day to reinforce the belief.
Make sure your child’s day doesn’t end without you telling him these positive things.
2. Be genuine.
Make these phrases a daily routine.
You need to believe what you’re saying to convince your child. Not so hard, especially since we really mean it when we tell them they are loved and that they are enough. But you need to check your posture when delivering these messages. Refrain from saying these words to your kid when you are feeling angry or when you are preoccupied with something else.
3. End with a hug.
Make your message more powerful by keeping it brief, but ending it with a hug. Physical touch like hugging releases a chemical in the body called oxytocin that helps ease stress and anxiety. The hug reinforces the positive feeling that your child felt while hearing those words of affirmation.
Such simple words, but makes a world of impact to your child. When said correctly, these words of affirmation will help your child become confident and resilient individuals. Just remember: your kids are always listening, even if you think they are not.
What are some positive things you say regularly to your child? Tell us in the comments!