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Help Kids Think Positive

Teaching Kids to Think Positive

Teaching kids to think positive may be more important than you imagine. Not only does it directly correlate to leading a more successful life and contribute to one's overall happiness, it also has a direct impact on both emotional and physical health. 

Here are just some of the benefits of positive thinking:

Increased Life Span
Lower Rates of Depression
Lower Levels of Distress
Greater resistance to the common cold
Better psychological and physical well-being
Reduced death from cardiovascular disease
Better coping skill when dealing with stress and hardships

What's So Bad About Negative Thoughts?

Some time ago, I wrote a post about what teens need to know about negative thinking. Truth is, these facts apply to kids and adults, as well. Here they are:

  1. They multiply.  Negative thoughts seem to take on a life of their own.  They almost become larger than life.  Once you get in a pattern of negative thinking, it can become difficult to break free!
  1. They keep you from being your best self.  Negative thoughts hold you back in every way.  They rob you of your confidence and stop you in your tracks.
  1. They stand in the way of your success.  When your thoughts make you feel down and out, you are less likely to branch out and try new things, or set higher goals for yourself.
  1. They make you feel lousy.  Confidence and self-esteem take a dive when negative thoughts are on the scene.
  1. They CAN be changed! You can change those negative thoughts into positive ones!  It takes time and practice, but over time, a huge difference can be made in how you feel and how well you do in all areas of your life.
Helping kids think positively is as important of a skill of helping them learn how to brush their teeth, look both ways before crossing the street and buckling a seat belt when riding in a vehicle. It serves as protection for a healthy, happy life!

How Do We Teach Positive Thinking Skills? 

It's a big question and the truth is, we teach these skills in two different ways:

1. Directly - we teach positive thinking skills directly when we emotion coach kids and walk them through the mental processes inherent in keeping their thoughts balanced.

2. Indirectly - we teach these skills indirectly by demonstrating them ourselves. It's important for us to "think out loud" sometimes, to show kids that we use the very process we are trying to teach them when it comes to thinking positively. If we walk around with a "woe is me" stance, and count our downfalls and foibles instead of blessings, how will our kids tend to think? If you guessed negatively, you are spot on! We have to watch our own thoughts and "practice what we preach", if we wish to raise positive kids with a "can do" attitude!

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