I’ve written on many topics over the past couple of years, but I don’t think I have touched on this one. The Live Science web site recently published 10 Scientific Tips For Raising Happy Kids. One of the tips is to foster self-compassion:
Parental guilt is its own industry, but avoid the undertow! Research suggests that self-compassion is a very important life skill, helping people stay resilient in the face of challenges. Self-compassion is made up of mindfulness, the ability to manage thoughts and emotions without being carried away or repressing them, common humanity or empathy with the suffering of others, and self-kindness, a recognition of your own suffering and a commitment to solving the problem. Parents can use self-compassion when coping with difficulties in child-rearing. In doing so, they can set an example for their kids.
Be kind to yourself and teach your children self-compassion. This doesn’t mean that you offer excuses for every action. No one knows better than we do when an action is a sincere mistake or when it is a deliberate intent to cause harm. When sincere mistakes are made, be gentle with yourself. Forgive genuine mistakes – those made by others and those made by you.
Life is fast, life is tough, and life is brutal. Surround yourself and those you love with compassion. Your life will be richer with this deliberate decision! A compassionate heart is a beautiful heart.
Written by Donna McClintock, COO with Children’s Choice Learning Centers, Inc.