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Mindful ActivityGive Your Kids a Glowing Review

Give Your Kids a Glowing Review

Take note of the skills and values you care about most in your child, and share this positive feedback with them. Designed to be done with children ages 10 and over.

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Hi, Jon again. Welcome to this audio activity about the use of positive praise and the role of supportive manager. This activity is designed for parents with older children, those above 10, so thinking middle school, high school, and beyond. So if that's you or if this is just something you're interested learning about, let's get started, shall we? As our children get older, our time with them sometimes changes and they're starting to do things that are more and more independent, and well, the same strategies may start to feel less effective or a little bit more strained. We wanna think about what ways we can use this important power of directing our attention to notice our children's positive behaviors at this phase of their development. And for this challenge, it's useful to think about a supportive manager. If we think about what might make for a most supportive manager, some of the things include nurturing and noticing some of the skills that we are most proud of. And they do so not by making comments on every single behavior, but noticing trends and reflecting back on patterns of behavior that we're looking for. This is helpful when we think about the behaviors and the values that we're trying to support in our older children. "Wow, I'm impressed with the hard work you're putting into that project. I'm so impressed that you supported your friend through that hard time." So we don't have to say much more than announcing what we see. Think of those elements that are recipes for the type of wellbeing and success we want to see them have as adults, perseverance, kindness, respect. The key component is to look for the larger process, not the outcome, the thing that they're doing, the skill, the value that they're bringing to the table. And when you're reflecting back on that, sharing it with them like a supportive manager, you're showing them that they're seen. It could be easy to be drawn towards outcomes. We could say, "Great job getting second place in that competition!" And I would just want to be cautious about that type of outcome-based praise, because it sort of says this is the way to be noticed, when in fact what we really care about is that they tried their best or they put forth a good effort. And in fact, if our child had not tried their best and got those, we'd feel very differently about that second place or great grade. So really thinking about when I'm being the supportive manager, it's not just that the job got done, it's the how. So how do I do this? Well, we gotta direct our attention and notice. What are the things that you're seeing over the last few days or even right now that you're proud of? What are the things that you wanna see more of? And if it's something that you wanna see more of, name it. Reminding you that your...


TypeMindful Activity
Duration5 min

About your teachers

  • A former Buddhist monk, Andy has guided people in meditation and mindfulness for 20 years. In his mission to make these practices accessible to all, he co-created the Headspace app in 2010.

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