Once upon a time when my boys were little, we decided to stop off at a 7-Eleven to get some summer slurpies.  Out front of the 7-Eeven were a whole bunch of teenagers we had to wade through to get to the door.  One very well-mannered teenage boy opened the door for my boys and I — and I not only thanked the young man but said to my two little boys, “Boys, that is what a gentleman looks like.”

Well on our way out a few boys all clamored to open the door for us three so they’d get a compliment too.  All children, including your teenagers are THIRSTY for positive reinforcement particularly for positive and encouraging words that say,

“I believe in you! You rock! You are going places!  Thanks for always stepping up to the plate, or that is what a gentleman or well-mannered person looks like.”

As adults, check yourself and be the powerful influence in your children’s lives and in the lives of children in the community by modeling good manners and taking the time to notice when they display noble acts and good manners too.

Children will live up to…..or down to whatever you say to them whether it’s encouraging words or critical words.  Words are POWER-FILLED and they change lives, for better or for worse.   If you tell your child they are lazy, ungrateful, that is what you will get.  If you tell your child you love their confidence or that they are disciplined, that is what you will also get. XOXO

Here are some great virtues to acknowledge children with.  Catch them acting positively for even a second  – especially if it is a virtue you want them to grow in.

Confidence, joy, idealism, responsible, creative, loyal, justice, steadfast, disciplined, truthful, respectful, loving, honest, determined, polite.

Take a look at this wonderful words to start with and begin noticing them and saying them to your kids.


Written by : Tara McIntosh

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