Friday, March 1, 2013

Elementary Activities: Affirming Words

By Deborah Pace Rowley

Last night I went with one of my daughters to hear Hilary Weeks speak. She gave a powerful message about the life-changing effects of positive thinking. She introduced us to the idea of being accountable for our positive thoughts by using a clicker. You can get a clicker and read more about Hilary here.

Here was my favorite quote of the evening:
A single footstep will not make a path on earth. So a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.

I know my daughter is getting a clicker through her church youth group and I am tempted to get a clicker as well. I know I need to work harder on thinking more positively. But as I sat next to my beautiful, dedicated and inspiring daughter during the presentation I felt an even greater desire to help her to think positively about herself. During part of the evening, I noticed that she was wiping away tears. I felt that my own heart would break as I knew that I hadn't done enough to help her see all her amazing qualities and all the wonderful things she has to offer the world. I want to instill in my children a belief in themselves that will last through all the negative baggage the world will try to make them pick up.

I want to be more like Aibeeelen in the movie and book entitled The Help. Have you seen this awesome movie? After Aibeeelen witnesses the little girl she is caring for being hurt over and over again by her mother, she decides to do something about it. Everyday she tells Mae Mobley the same three things about herself. "You is kind, you is smart, you is important!" As soon as Mae Mobley learns to talk, Aibee has her repeat this self-affirmation. When Aibee has to leave the household, she has Mae Mobley repeat these words one last time.

What three words do I use to describe my elementary-age and teenage children? Have they heard me use these words in describing them? Will my positive, affirming words ring in their minds in the future when they need to know that someone believes in them. How often do I express these positive affirmations to each child?

Here is a list of a few powerful affirming phrases that we can say to our children:

You are loving. You are a full of good ideas. You are creative. You are a good influence on others. You are unique. You are valuable. You are always trying your best. You ask good questions. You are blessed. You are thankful. You are a child of God. You are loved. You are beautiful, inside and out. You are happy. You are helpful. You are a good listener. You are good at expressing yourself. You are friendly. You are healthy. You are strong. You are the joy of my life. You are just the child I need to complete my heart.

Will you join me in expressing one of these phrases to each of your children today?
Don't you want your child to feel and act just like Jessica in this sweet video? Don't you want to say these things each day to yourself?

Let's commit to be more positive and affirm the good in ourselves and our children daily.

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