We love the feeling of a fresh, new year. It inspires renewal, positivity, and feels like anything is possible. And since I’m a “glass half full” kind of person, I love encouraging my kids to see the silver lining in every dark cloud.
Here are 4 easy ways to inspire your littles to have a more positive outlook too.
1- Acknowledge the negative and turn it around.
It’s important to make your child feel that their frustration is understood, by listening and telling them that you're hearing them out. So if your little one is disappointed that an activity they were looking forward to got canceled, say something like: “I know, I hear you! I also get sad when something I'm excited for gets canceled. So let’s see, what can we do instead to make this day great?”
2- Start a gratitude or “happy” journal.
This practice is rooted in mindfulness and knowing how to be grateful for the little blessings in our life. Start a journal that you can fill in with your kiddos every night at bedtime, and list the three things that made today really great. It can be the small stuff, like that they had yummy cupcakes at school, or even that it was sunny outside. This practice will shift their mindset to one of gratitude, which is a key factor in optimism and mindfulness. It’s also a great way to bond with your kiddos during the bedtime routine, after bath-time.
3- Change “never” and “always” to sometimes.
Next time you hear your kids saying stuff like “I never score any goals at soccer” or “it’s always rainy on the weekends,” get them to swap the “nevers” to “sometimes”. It will help reframe their thinking.
4- Be kind to yourself.
Practice what you preach and ensure you make the most of things too. Your optimistic attitude is sure to rub off on your little ones, so even on the most challenging days, try to see the glass as half full -- even if it means things didn't work out as perfectly as you had anticipated! I like to look at things as teachable moments and as opportunities. Yes, it can be easier said than done, so be kind to yourself and give yourself a break too!
And be good!