The Internet has become part of our kids’ life as much as brushing teeth and showering are, if not more. Things that they do now are things that we would never have imagined doing in our daily lives when we were younger e.g. taking selfies, sharing multiple photos with a large audience in real time throughout the day, giving harsh comments to strangers from behind a screen, receiving mean comments from strangers.
In today’s world, words that go around get desensitised. There is no face attached to the comment you have just read. It’s merely a sentence on a screen that you happen to scroll pass.
Our children’s generation are becoming more and more self-centred and less sensitive to the feelings of other people. We cannot blame them, it’s just the type of society and culture they have been born into.
Our job as parents is to keep our kids pretty much alive in the real world, to see and feel things in real life and not only on the screen.
Raise them to value COMPASSION over SUCCESS
In today’s world, parents stress too much on getting good grades, getting into top universities, landing that most coveted job with a big company. They talk about the importance of achieving goals in life as the ultimate aim in life. Too much focus on achievement can diminish children’s sense of self, make them less willing to care for others, and more likely to see others as competitors or threats.
Instead, make achievement one theme in the large composition of a life. Don’t make it the one and only theme of life. Show them that you think highly of people who help others, not only think highly of millionaires and inventors. Show them what kind of impact compassion can have on one more person or millions of people. Show them great role models. Be a role model in the scale that you can handle as a family. Make it compassion part of your lives.
Bring kindness and unkindness, justice and injustice in the world to their attention.
Discuss what you see in the news. Allow your children to express their thoughts, even though you may not agree with them. The most important thing is to allow them to have their own thoughts. Then you can share your thoughts and tell them why you think differently. That is how they learn.
Children need to practice kindness with guidance from adults.
There’s no use hearing about how good kindness is if they don’t get a chance to be kind and feel the effect it has on their little hearts. They need opportunities to do kind things. Being little kids, they can only do so with your guidance and supervision. So next time one of your kids fall down, ask the other kid if they would like to help him get up. It starts as simple as daily acts of kindness within the family to kindness for strangers. Let them practice kindness and they will get addicted to it.