“We are like stones joined in an arch, bound to collapse… unless we support one another.” Leo Tolstoi
Now that many children received gifts from Santa, some expected some not; I notice the main
concern of parents calling me for advise refer to their child’s bitterness and ungratefulness.
In other cases, it is the sibling rivalry that has emotions at an all time high when you had hoped for holiday contentment.
Let’s demonstrate how we can support each other, starting at home. The remedy I recommend for a child’s self-centeredness is to interrupt their misbehavior by asking your child
questions that activate and cultivate an educated heart. I use in my work the term the “educated heart” as message to foster compassionate action in young people because it is not enough to have intelligent minds, we must also have a pure heart. A pure heart lacks aggressiveness.
In our daily lives we have opportunities to model cooperation and peacemaking rather than
competition and jealousy. Here’s how. Next time you catch wind of your children fighting—
instead of ignoring it to let them work it out, you need to step in and step up into your parental power. A child is not necessary going to learn peacemaking without our input and guidance.
But even the well-meaning parents tell me they do not feel equipped to handle conflict resolution because they were not given strategies in their upbringing.
I realize this more true than ever. If our children are going to have emotional intelligence, we
adults are to be responsible for modeling these skills. So when I suggest we interrupt the misbehavior, instead of letting it go; what I mean is, you have to keep your calm and not get caught in the cross-fire or show favor. Here’s a powerful question to ask your children: “What are you not bringing to this situation? Is it patience, a moment to consider another point of view?”
When I ask: “What are you not bringing to this relationship to make it work?” Most kids know the answer. Taking time to pause and reflect offers your child a chance to act mindfully, rather than act out.
Here’s another strategy: ask your child to see the goodness in others and see the goodness in themselves. Try it and see what happens.