As my kids get older, I find myself navigating so many situations where I need to figure out how to guide them towards the right way to be, how to be kind, how to be a good person…in ways that a kid can understand. Here are a few things that have come up recently that felt like things we can all be doing in our grown-up lives as well…
1. Greet people when you see them ("Good morning!", "Hi!") AND make sure you look them in the eye! Whether it's the bus driver, your teacher, your friend's mom or dad, make eye contact with those you see and greet.
2. Be kind to everyone (even if they are not kind to you). I know it can be really hard to be nice to someone that isn't always very nice to you. But we can't let someone else's lack of kindness affect us. Be the one who is kind to everyone because you don't know who is struggling with something else at home or maybe having a hard time themselves. They need your kindness.
3. When you are having a conversation with someone—listen to them—and treat him or her like they are the most important person in the room. Whether it's a friend or someone you just met at a party, give everyone the same respect and attention. It doesn't matter if someone is older, younger, or you think they are not at the same level as you in some way. Treat everyone the same as you would like to be treated.
4. Write notes when you're thankful (and also when you're sorry). Give and send thank you notes (or drawings) when people make you feel special on your birthday or give you a gift. Also, if you did something not nice to a friend, write them a real life letter to apologize.
5. It's ok to get messy. Enjoy the mess because it's often in those moments that we are most creative, free, and happy! But we still need to have a plan to clean up afterwards (because your mom won't always clean up your messes). :P
Have a great, LONG weekend! We'll see you back here on Tuesday!
(Photo by The Confetti Project)