4 Things You Need to Teach to Raise Well-Adjusted Kids

Note: “4 Things You Need to Teach to Raise Well-Adjusted Kids” is a guest post by Kristin Louis over at parentingwithkris.com. Head on over to her blog for more articles on raising children.

In the age-old battle of nature versus nurture, the latter is undoubtedly preferable as it’s well within one’s control. With that said, it’s your responsibility as parents to not leave anything to chance when it comes to raising your children. Here’s a nifty guide on effectively nurturing the most important traits in your children in age-appropriate ways.

Teach Empathy

Empathy is what sets humans apart, but it’s not an innate trait. 

How to Teach Empathy (Ages 3 to 4)

Empathy in the Classroom: Why Should I Care?

How to Help a Teenager That Has No Empathy

Teach Self-Discipline

Discipline should not be about controlling your child. 

The Importance of Teaching Kids Self-Discipline

5 Ways to Manage Tantrums and Meltdowns

An Age-by-Age Guide To Disciplining Your Kid

Home Safeguards Encourage Self-Discipline in Teens

Teach Positive Thinking

Teaching your kids to take the negative in stride and mindfully choose positivity sets them up for success mentally and emotionally.

Kids as Young as 5 See Benefits of Positive Thinking

7 Activities to Help Your Child Develop a Positive Attitude

Prevention of Internalizing Disorders in 9–10-Year-Old Children

For Teens Knee-Deep In Negativity, Reframing Thoughts Can Help

Teach Boundaries

Teaching kids to set and respect boundaries paves the way for healthy relationships.

Why Kids Need Boundaries

When Your Toddler Starts Testing His Limits

5 Books to Help Teach Kids About Healthy Boundaries

How to Talk to Teenagers About Consent, Boundaries, and Self-control

Yes, there’s no question that raising kids will be a challenge that requires a great deal of patience. Being well-armed with the right resources and information such as these will, no doubt, make the job easier, and a successful one at that.

My Teachable Moment

It was one of those moments that I wanted to get just right.  My son, age seven, popped into the car after school and said, “Mommy, I’m popular!”  I said, “Oh?”  “Yes, I’m popular!”, he said with excitement.

I paused for a moment and asked, “What makes you popular?”  He said, “You know…when you are good at things and people know you.”  I paused again, searching for words, and then said, “Well, you know being popular is not the most important thing in life.  Do you know what matters more than anything?”

In my mind, I was already rehearsing how loving others, being kind, sharing your gifts, not judging others, being a good friend, and being popular for being someone who causes others to feel accepted and loved, matters the most.  Until this time, being popular, getting picked on, and other social issues had not entered into his first grade existence at his smallish elementary school.  I had already decided that I was going to push person-hood before popularity.  This was a teachable moment opportunity, and I was not going to let it slip by!

I asked again, “Do you know what matters more than anything?”

In his sweet little voice, he said, “God.  God matters more than anything.”

Stunned, I sat there.  Smiled a bit, and gathered my thoughts.

I said, “You are right.  God matters more than anything, and you know, God wants us to be kind, generous, to be a good friend, to not judge, and to love others.”  He said, “I know, Mommy, I know.”

And there it was….

my teachable moment....

my gentle reminder….

my continual realization that while I have so much to teach my children,

in return,

they have more to teach me.375917_341839525907009_1617492878_n