There are so many things I may have done differently had I the courage to make different choices. You often hear people say: “If only I knew then, what I know now”. Okay, so you may not have had the knowledge back then, but what about chances missed because of a negative mindset or out of fear.
Caregivers choose to do what they think is best and may question the concept of children making their own decisions. You may even think it a load of ‘BS’, especially if you’re more old school with a, ‘you will do as I say’, attitude. I’m not challenging parenting styles, especially not on major welfare issues. No, I’m considering minor things which can inculcate well thought out decision making from a young age. You’ll be amazed at children’s insight and how responsible they can be. We can even learn from them. It’s definitely a two-way street. Yes, they may see the world through rose-coloured glasses, but maybe as adults it’s good to be reminded of this because our choices are ultimately very different when all we see is doom and gloom.
Learning Life Lessons
Eating choices = Good health/Self-love.
Allowing children to choose what they dish-up, with a little persuasion in the vegetable department, encourages them to make good choices, even if this only takes full effect once they’re much older, but hopefully it is enough to cement a healthy relationship with food that circumvents any future eating disorders.
Entertainment choices = Compromise/Acceptance.
Discussing and giving everyone a chance to choose the family movie teaches little ones about compromise and to accept other peoples choices. With this comes the realization that not everything is in your control, nor do you always get what you want. They do however have control over their actions; sulk for not getting their way or be happy and enjoy the movie.
Clothing choices = Rules/Commonsense.
The simplicity of being able to choose what to wear at the weekend, as apposed to a compulsory school uniform, helps children learn about protocols. You may have a tussle on your hands when there’s a special event, but the upside to this is them learning social norms, which instills a level of decorum that will benefit them immensely in the grownup world.
Money choices = Patience/Decisiveness.
Assisting young ones to save and allowing them to choose how to spend it, gives them insight into living with the consequences of their choices. It’s also the perfect opportunity for them to learn about comparing what they can afford and deciding on whether to continue saving for something more expensive that’s of a better quality. This can imprint that important decisions should not be made in hast and hopefully also negate instant gratification which is a major problem with today’s generation.
Friend choices = Communication/Self-growth.
Choosing friends is always challenging because figuring out who will support, uplift and encourage, instead of breaking you down is difficult at any age. All you can do is discuss and give advice because your best case scenario is to hope that they experience as little hurt, heartache, pain and disappointment as possible.
Action Choices = Tolerance/Responsibility
Growing up can be hard because kids are often cruel. The onus lies upon adults to steer children towards transforming their world into a better place. Love rather than hate. Accept rather than ostracize. Tolerate rather than vindicate. Grasping these concepts, as well as knowing right from wrong and understanding the consequences of harming another person will help eradicate many of the societal problems we are faced with today.
Study choices = Time Management/Consequences
Advocate, ‘what you put in, is what you get out’; meaning, that doing the work usually equates in good results, but also inform them that sometimes this correlation is skewed and then it’s best not to berate yourself because if you tried your best then you need to be proud of yourself either way. The same sentiment goes for not expecting great results if you did not put in the work. They need to be content with what they get and if not, then you can advise them on how to improve.
Environment Choices = Cleanliness/Forethought.
Getting children to see the concord between; clean room, clean mind and clean environment, clean life, is really important for them to keep their surroundings neat and tidy. This also teaches them to appreciation and be proud of what they have and to understand that everything lasts longer when looked after and taken care of. It may be helpful to explain that anything can be taken away from you at anytime and this applies to their personal belongings, as well as the condition of Mother-earth and the world around us.
Thought Choices = Perseverance/Positivity
Negative thoughts are natural, so it’s imperative to teach young people a positive self dialogue because there’s nothing better than being equipped with the emotional armor and knowledge that the bad you are experiencing will not last forever. The thought of, ‘this to shall pass’, will help them make clear choices based on the importance of what makes them happy, instead of being influenced by naysayers.
Childhood lessons, with positive reinforcement, gives rise to strong confident adults who have the tools and abilities to easily navigate their way through life.
It’s virtually impossible to kill a tardigrade (waterbear). You can freeze, boil, crush, zap with radiation or deprive it of food and water for years, but this eight-legged microscopic creature will still wiggle its way back to life.
I am the very best me I can be!
I Think, I Am
by Louise Hay & Kristina Tracy
Genre : Children Self-help
The Emoji Movie
Time : 1hr 26min
Genre : Animation/Sci-fi Adventure
Brave by Sara Bareilles