Kids are highly motivated creatures and by nature, they thrive for validation and praise. Sometimes in lieu of praise, we get in a habit of unthinking, hollow, and manipulative praise. Let’s try to change that habit into something worthwhile.
But changing habits take a lot of patience and positive reinforcement. Sometimes you’re so busy, that your brain is accustomed to just blurting out, Good Job. It can be hard to think of a ‘right’ thing to say. So I’ve compiled a list of compliments and praises that you can use the next time your kid comes to you with something that is worthy of praise. If you read through this, they will be in the back of your mind and you can make something creative around it and tell it to your minis.
- When they’ve done something to help you, say thank you and explain why you’re grateful for your child’s action.
- Thank you for bringing my phone when it was ringing
- Thank you for picking your clothes this morning, it makes it so much easier for me.
- I really appreciate it when you fetch yourself a glass of water, instead of asking for one.
- Thank you for putting on your mask, we can head to the park now.
2. When you’re doing an activity with them, make observations based on facts- compliment them based on what you see, try to be neutral here so that your child is not very influenced by your comment/compliment.
- Wow! You made a unicorn
- You did it all by yourself. Amazing.
- You drew the circle for Earth really small.
- We did this together, it was exciting!
- That took some time, but you did it.
- You’ve made the house really colourful.
3. Encourage their thought process and extend the learning by asking questions.
- How did you figure that out?
- You coloured the tree, what next?
- Can you tell me more about the elephant you drew with wings?
- What is your favourite part of doing this activity?
- How did you think of this?
4. Express your emotions in words, to help them understand your feelings.
- I love it when you help your sister with her homework.
- You make me so proud when you help others.
- I’ll love you unconditionally, no matter what may come.
- Look how happy is your friend when you share your toys with him.
- You didn’t stop even when it got hard, I’m so proud.
- You look so happy to have done that.
- You feel happy when you play soccer.
5. Like they say, sometimes silence is gold. We don’t need to applaud and praise everything. It’s ok to sometimes sit back and watch our kids do their thing.
- Don’t say anything, just smile.
Changing a habit is the first step towards making a positive change in our personality. I hope these small suggestions, help you bring around that change.