As an adult, a good old fashioned self pep talk is a fantastic way to get yourself through a rough day, and as it turns out... they're great for children too! Affirmations for kids work wonders for young children as they teach your little one how to to self regulate, develop a sense of self and boost their self-esteem!
Now... I have a little secret to share...
I believe there are TWO types of affirmations for kids! YES. You heard it hear first. TWO.
The FIRST type is, of course, the phrases your children say to THEMSELVES.
The SECOND is...
The phrases and encouragement YOU say to your children.
So, what are the differences between these two affirmations? What are some of my favourite affirmations for you and your kids to try? And how can you get your little one engage with daily affirmations?
Let's get right into it!
5 Benefits of affirmations for kids
So what are the 5 MAIN benefits of practising affirmation for kids?
- It boosts your kid's self-esteem and confidence.
- They help to develop a strong sense of self.
- They encourage your child to try their best.
- It teaches your child kindness and understanding towards others.
- They help your child deal with disappointment in a healthy way.
Daily affirmations play a huge role in how your child sees the world through their own internal dialog and the words of encouragement shared by you.
So, what are some examples of affirmations for kids to try with your little one?
25 Affirmations For Kids That THEY Say To Themselves
Affirmations that your child says to themselves will complement their natural internal dialog. They need to be short and sweet and easy to comprehend. Here are a list of my favourites!
- I can do it
- I am the best
- I won’t give up
- I am a champion
- I am smart
- I can work this out
- I am going to try again
- I am creative
- Today is going to be great
- I am confident
- I am scared but that’s OK
- I am a hard worker
- Mistakes are fine they help me learn
- I can do this by myself
- I am beautiful
- It's OK not to be OK
- I will try again tomorrow
- I am capable
- I am resilient and strong
- I am kind
- Learning is fun
- I am loved
- Whatever I do, I will do my best
- I've got this
- My best is enough
Once they have a repertoire of phrases, you can encourage them to use them when they are struggling to do something that is difficult to master, are feeling scared or finding it hard to control their emotions.
How to teach your little one to use affirmations
Teaching your child affirmations is very similar to teaching them other words, EXCEPT these phrases have to be aimed INTERNALLY.
So to start with, stand in front of the mirror with your little one and encourage them to say affirmations to their reflection. They may feel strange doing this at first, but once they get into the habit this dialogue of self-belief will have a positive impact on their self-worth.
Try teaching affirmations every morning whilst getting dressed and every evening after bathtime.
32 Affirmations For Kids That YOU Say To Them
Different to affirmations your kids say to themselves, YOUR positive affirmations should be encouraging your children to acknowledge their feelings and give them the words to express how they feel in a safe and positive way.
They should be based on unconditional love, focused on effort rather than result, reassurance that it is OK not to be OK and encourage kindness and forgiveness towards others.
As with so many things when it comes to parenting, leading by example is KEY and your children will look to you to learn how to feel good about themselves and handle what life throws at them.
Here are 32 great words and phrases to use with young children to ensure you are feeding their inner dialogue in a healthy way!
- I believe you
- I love you
- I love you just the way you are
- You make me smile
- I am so proud of you
- You must be so proud of yourself
- I could do with your help
- That was so much easier with your help
- You are such a good helper
- You are so kind
- That was good of you to share
- Good thinking
- That is a great idea
- You are a super star
- Well done
- It’s ok if you can’t manage it
- We can try again tomorrow
- Well done you kept trying
- I knew you could do it
- You are learning
- You are a hard worker
- You worked it out
- You can learn from your mistakes
- You can’t do it yet
- If you practice you will
- I remember feeling that way too
- It’s OK to be scared
- That took a lot of courage
- I understand you are angry
- That was a good choice
- That was brave
- It’s OK to miss me
Establishing Daily Affirmations for young kids
Following on from that rather extensive list of affirmations for kids, daily affirmations for children are a great way to get the day going and reinforce a specific theme for your little one to focus on that day!
I love the idea of having a specific theme for a day, so here is a quick idea for what a week of affirmations could look like for your little one:
- I am loved.
- I am amazing!
- I can achieve anything!
- I am capable.
- I love myself.
- I did it all by myself!
- I won’t give up.
Saying these affirmations over breakfast and encouraging your child to repeat the affirmations throughout the day will help to cement them into their mind.
Writing the sayings in a visible space, like a fridge or whiteboard, will make it easier for your little one to remember the affirmation throughout the day!
Why Are Positive Affirmations For Kids Important?
So, why are positive affirmations for kids so important?
Well, affirmations for kids can sound a bit new age and weird to some people, BUT I believe they are hugely important.
As I briefly touched on earlier, my concept of affirmations for kids is EQUALLY about what words we use as parents when talking to our children AS WELL AS the words they say to themselves.
Peggy O’Mara who was the editor and publisher of ‘Mothering Magazine’ from 1980-2011 puts it perfectly when she says ‘the way we talk to our children becomes their inner dialogue.’
Creating a strong sense of self and giving your child the confidence to be the best they can be is a parent’s most important job.
And as a parent, the words we use to encourage, praise and motivate are all incredibly important to our child's self-esteem and it will determine how they tackle difficult tasks, feel about themselves and treat others.
In short, the affirmations we offer our children will be the building blocks on which our children's self-confidence will grow and how they will treat others, including their own children later in life.
So how can we encourage our children to use affirmations?
How To Create A Space And Time For Affirmations for Kids
Well, it's often hard to remember to say positive affirmations to our kids and ourselves...
Life gets in the way and we are often moving so quickly that we miss the opportunities to offer encouragement, praise and motivation.
So, as well as adopting the habit of regularly saying affirmations to our children, we should find certain times in the day and spaces in the home where we can offer up positive affirmations for kids without distractions.
Having a calm space in the home will create an ideal environment for you and your little one to connect.
This could be a favourite chair, a floor length mirror, a play table or your little one's bed. It just needs to be a space where you can encourage their efforts, listen to their worries and discover how they are feeling.
Another great time for this close communication is just before your little one goes to sleep during their bedtime routine. By having a cuddle at the end of the day it is an ideal time to reduce fears and tell your child how much you love them and how important they are.
A second idea to encourage your child to participate in affirmations is to provide opportunities for them to SEE the words. If your child is a visual or kinesthetic learner, seeing and being hands on with the affirmations can make a big difference in them actively using the words!
Therefore, I've created some PRINTABLE colouring pages for you to give to your little one to motivate them to engage in affirmations!
PRINTABLE Affirmations For Kids Colouring Pages
As I just mentioned, motivating your child to SEE affirmations is a great way to encourage them to use them every day and cement the affirmations in their minds!
So, here are 7 FREE PRINTABLE Colouring Pages that are perfect for little hands to colour in and engage with!
11 Ways to make your affirmations more effective
On top of creating safe spaces and engaging activities, the basic principles listed below will ensure that your affirmations for kids are focused and more effective for your little one!
So when creating an affirmation:
- Focus on effort rather than success.
- Show them that success is not the only option.
- Show them it is OK to fail and that failure is an opportunity to learn.
- Be specific with praise.
- Encourage persistence.
- Don’t compare performance with friends and siblings.
- Be enthusiastic.
- Encourage them to be proud of their own achievements.
- Acknowledge their feelings and emotions.
- Encourage them to vocalise their feelings.
Do you have any other ideas about how to make affirmations more effective or you have some of your own that you want to share?
Be sure to share this post on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram and add your affirmations for kids using the hashtag #T2TAffirmations
I hope you found this article helpful and informative and if you have any other ideas for future blog posts, be sure to drop me an email at [email protected] and let me know!
So, until next time, with love and support, happy parenting!