We all seek happiness. As parents, we would like nothing more than to see our children lead happy fulfilling lives. If this is truly our desire, then happiness must begin with us. It begins with the values we teach them as children, and the habits we help them create. Here are 10 values and principles that we can teach our children while they are at home that will assist them in gaining a lifetime of happiness in whatever life they choose to lead.
Teach them about god
Not only does a belief in God provide purpose and meaning, it teaches values and human kindness. We learn from His example, love, service, charity, humility, honesty, and kindness. We learn to put aside the shiny things of the world and hold onto something better. A belief in God provides hope in times of despair, light in darkness and peace in the midst of a storm. Teaching our children about God will do more for their happiness than any other value we can teach them.
Teach them optimism
A positive attitude is vitally important to anyone striving to live a happy life. If our children can learn to always look for the good in every situation, they will be more able to find happiness in every situation. Teach your children to play the "Glad Game" by naming off all the things for which they are glad every time they feel more inclined to be negative. By teaching children this simple practice, they will be more able to replace negative feelings with positive thoughts. They will be on their way to a happier life.
Teach them that family matters
Family can be one of life's greatest sources of happiness. Create strong and loving bonds in your family as your children are growing up. Then, they will desire to have a family of their own one day. The values and relationships created in a family are strong and everlasting. In times of trial, they will know they have someone in whom to rely, and they are never alone. When they are adults, they will be lifted by the laughter of their children after a hard day. They will find joy in the simple touch of their spouse. Nothing can compare to the love found in a family.
Teach them the value of work and responsibility
If our children learn the importance of work and responsibility at a young age, then it will be easier for them to get and keep a job as an adult. They will understand the importance of providing for their family. Plus, they will know their role as a father and mother, husband and wife. Both work and responsibility are a necessary part of anything worth having in life. Marriage and family both require work and responsibility.
Teach them how to love and be loved
Teaching our children how to love begins with our interactions with them. Give hugs often, praise and compliment your children, leave them notes of encouragement and support. Give them high-fives, put your arm around them or snuggle up and read a book together. Too often families lack physical affection or praise for one another, making it uncomfortable any time there is a hug, or praise given. Teaching children how to love appropriately, and helping them feel loved as children will help them build loving relationships that will last.
Teach them to follow their dreams
Teach your children to believe in themselves. Let them know you believe in them, too. Encourage them to pursue their passion, even if their passion seems less desirable. If you have taught them the value of work and responsibility, they will strike a balance between both. They will be much happier doing what they love and knowing that you support them in it.
Teach them how to set and achieve goals
This will be an invaluable lesson for children to learn, especially when it comes to following their dreams. When they can break things down into manageable steps and goals, they are more able to see the possibilities and the results of their efforts. They will be able to accomplish great things one step at a time.
Teach them how to communicate
Communication is an important aspect of everyday life. In a personal relationship, we must teach our children to share their thoughts and feelings with their companion in a positive and constructive way. We can teach this by having meetings with our children where we ask them to share their feelings and thoughts openly to us. We can also teach them how to communicate effectively in the workplace and other situations.
Teach them to love learning
If we teach our children to love learning, they will never grow stagnate which leads to unhappiness. They will desire to read, to travel, and to learn new things. Their life will be full of new and interesting challenges because they will always have the desire to learn something new.
Teach them compassion for others
This is one of the greatest values we can teach our children. It is selfless and allows them to see the world through the eyes of another. When they can look at the world around them and see all of the work that needs to be done to love and lift another, then have the resolve to roll up their sleeves and get to work because of the love they have for the people, they will truly lead a happy life.
A happy life does not come overnight. It comes with small choices we make every day on how to live, to love, and how to give back to the world where we live. If we take the time to teach our children these 10 values and principles, we will be giving them the greatest gift we can give, a greater opportunity to lead a happy life.