10 Keys For Happier Children

November 7, 2014

This week we have been thinking about the factors in family life that create happier children. Whether it’s perseverance, managing expectations or showing your children you are proud of them, here are our 10 key points for happier children

safe and happy

1. Be a happier parent.

Not laugh-a-minute but genuinely content and fulfilled – give yourself time and permission to prioritise this – it’s good for your whole family if the parents are feeling good about themselves.

2. Value your child for who she is, not what you think/want her to be

Resist the urge to live your unfulfilled dreams through your children.

3. Spend time together

Just being /doing normal stuff – quality time should be natural and can be any shared activity, from washing the dishes, to a game, to curling up on the sofa together.

4. Don’t over-schedule

Kids need time to relax and regroup and to find their own fun.

5. Let your children make (small) mistakes and accept responsibility for them

Feeling in control of your own life is one of the most beneficial proactive factors against mental health issues.

6. Do something spontaneous/break the routine

We can place too much importance on our daily lives – every once in a while, do something different, especially in order to show your child you enjoy spending time together.

7. Keep presents small but meaningful and infrequent

Children will value them more and respect them, and you’ll have fewer arguments about tidying up. Children will also enjoy earning money and saving up for things they want (which doesn’t happen if they get everything they ask for).

8. Praise effort and attitude, not results

This will promote pride in their work and confidence, and will be self-perpetuating.

9. Be consistent – have as few rules as necessary but stick to them

Children get confused when they don’t understand the rules and no one is happy when they are confused.

10. Be sociable

Most people’s happiness is based largely on their relationships. Helping your child form friendships and relate to a wide range of other people will promote social skills and increase the chances of your child having mutually rewarding friendships and relationships.


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This post was written by Dr Amanda Gummer

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