“What’s wrong with kids these days?” You hear it all the time. And honestly, I think a lot of it has to do with positive affirmations for kids.
“What?!” You ask. How can it be wrong to provide positive affirmations for kids.
Well, if you provide positive affirmations and nothing else, you’re basically offering what kids see as empty words, and even as lies.
So should we never offer positive affirmations for kids?
Of course not. Kids need a ton of positive encouragement and reinforcement to really develop and thrive.
But we must back it up with two things: modeling and accountability.
Integrity is something we have very little of in our society today.
We do not hold ourselves accountable, and we do not hold each other accountable.
And, honestly, it’s not our fault.
We are at the end result of a civilization that has allowed money and material wealth to become the top priority in life.
This is not a condemnation of capitalism. Capitalism as an economic system is the best we have seen so far.
The barter system is great and all, but not everyone needs a chicken in exchange for a new pair of shoes. Direct trade does not always work.
So to have a central monetary system makes sense.
I provide society with this essential service, and I am paid in some form of centrally agreed upon currency. Then I can use that currency for pay for other goods and services I need or want.
The problem is not capitalism as an economic system. It is capitalism as a political system.
When we decide that the end all be all is money, we have failed as a people.
And no one in America thinks that our democracy is functioning properly right now.
So, we are out of integrity as a society.
No wonder we find it difficult to have integrity as individuals.
The good news is we have the ability to change all that.
Clinical psychologist and best selling author Jordan Peterson advises us to put our own houses in perfect order.
The most positive way we contribute to our society is to put our houses in order, to make the changes we need to make within, and that includes with our children.
To have integrity means to tell the truth, to be people of our word, to be accountable for our actions, and to live by a moral code.
If we want to have an influence on our children, we can stop trying to be a great friend and start modeling integrity and holding our children to the same standards we hold ourselves to.
Thus, before we go marching in the streets, fighting with strangers on social media, shouting at family holiday dinners, and spinning out of control in our rage against the machine, we can go deep within, check in with ourselves, and make some positive changes at home.
Positive Affirmations for Kids: Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise
If we can be anything in life, may we be healthy, wealthy, and wise.
To be healthy means to feel good from the inside out. Your body is a temple you care for lovingly with good food, good movement, good rest, and a spiritual practice.
Eat your rainbow, lots of vegetables and fruits, leans proteins, healthy fats, and drink lots of water to stay hydrated.
Exercise at least 30 minutes every day, preferably outside in the fresh air and sunshine, and preferably first thing in the morning.
Sleep at least 7 hours each night, and aim for 8 so if you fall short, you won’t go under 7.
And develop a spiritual practice.
You don’t have to pray to God. You don’t even have to believe in God.
Just take time every single day, ideally at least 20 minutes, to honor something bigger than yourself, something mysterious and wondrous. Let it be nature if you like.
Studies show that long term meditators have all around stronger health markers than those who don’t meditate.
Work in a way that allows you to provide for yourself and for your family, and live within your means.
If you struggle with this one, it is time to shift your mindset and rethink what “work” means, what “provide” means, and what your means are.
Find work you enjoy, that pays a decent wage, and until you get there, live well below your means. Move back in with family. Get a renter. Cut corners where you must until you feel like you have more than enough.
Growth mindset begins with understanding that we live in an abundant universe that has more than enough resources for everyone.
When you develop growth mindset, your wealth begins to actually, literally, grow. Before you know it, you’re leveling up in a way that feels good to you.
You will fail.
Positive thinking or positive thoughts, negative thoughts or negative self-talk, you will fail, regardless.
We came here to fail.
No one gets anywhere without failing over and over.
Think of when your children were learning to crawl, then walk, then run, then climb, then read.
They failed over and over.
For some reason we are not hard on them for failing, which is as it should be, but we are hard on ourselves for failing.
As author Brene Brown says, we must learn to embrace the suck.
We have to learn to love to fail because that is where all of our wisdom comes from.
We don’t learn from success. We learn from failure.
That’s how our kids learned to crawl, to walk, to run, to climb, to read.
We become more and more wise every time we fail and then rise again.
Positive Affirmations for Kids: Our Children Are Watching Us
The most powerful tool we have with our children is the knowledge that they are always watching us. Always.
Even when we are so sure they aren’t.
They are constantly learning who to be, how to behave, and how to move forward by watching us fail and rise and succeed and fail again.
So it is on us to model the behavior we expect from them.
May our children never point their fingers at us and call us hypocrites and liars. May they say that their mothers and fathers taught them integrity.
Everything we say to them becomes their inner voice. And everything we do with them become embedded memories in their little psyches.
We think that the hardest part of raising children is supporting them financially, keeping them safe, or some other trivial thing that pretty much anyone on earth can do with a little effort.
But no. The hardest part of raising children is raising ourselves simultaneously – unlearning behaviors that are toxic to us and to them, retraining our own positive beliefs and doing positive things in our every day lives to bring about more good in our lives.
The good news is that positive influence is a hundred times more powerful than negative influence. Show up in integrity for your kids and your light will shine so bright they will carry it forward.
Perhaps the second most challenging aspect of parenting is to hold ourselves and our children accountable for our actions.
We raise expectations, we model behaviors, and then we must be accountable to those behaviors.
“Spare the rod, spoil the child,” is one of my favorite quotes from the Christian bible. Yes, irreligious witches read the bible, too!
No, not because I beat my kids. Please, my children have never been grabbed roughly.
The actual symbolic meaning behind the word “rod” in the bible is “truth.”
Speak the truth to your children, teach them, and they will grow up healthy, wealthy, and wise.
Do not spare your children from the truth, from the harsh realities of life. Obviously, there are age group appropriate truths to tell, and delivery is everything, but raise them with their heads high, and do not coddle them.
Hold them accountable for their actions, and allow them to watch you hold yourself accountable.
A Foundation of Love
And at the base of all of it, at the foundation of your entire life with your children, is love.
If you can reparent yourself, work hard to make yourself healthy, wealthy, and wise, always modeling for your children and holding you and them accountable to your standards, with a strong foundation of pure, compassionate, empathetic, unconditional love, then all of your affirmations will pay off.
When you use the following affirmations, they will ring true. Your children will hear your words as supportive of your actions.
Positive Affirmations for Kids
I am supposed to fail as I learn.
I am loved.
I am supported.
My parents are always here for me.
I am capable of overcoming challenges.
I believe in myself.
I can do this.
Anything is possible.
I am worthy of love.
I can set strong boundaries and hold them.
I am healthy, wealthy, and wise.
In the end, your words matter as backup for your actions.
Keep your actions full of integrity, and you have nothing to worry about.