The reality of our society today is that so many people have forgotten – or perhaps never learned – how to care for others without the expectation of receiving something in return. The rejection of the qualities of compassion and kindness has left a negative impression on our youth, who rely on the guidance of trusted leaders to develop positive character traits. The most important thing that we as parents, mentors, and role models can do for our children is to teach them to give. If we want to alter society’s propensity to be self-serving, we must instill in the children of this day the obligation of caring for others.
Lead By Example
We can never approach teaching our children positive qualities by having them “do as we say, not as we do.” One of the greatest responsibilities we carry is to lead by example. In order to teach our children to give, we must ourselves be willing to give. We must care first and present an example to follow if we dare hope to raise children who care.
Take Opportunities to Teach
Life offers many opportunities that can serve as teachable moments. While in your child’s presence, deliberately stop to help someone who is struggling to carry something. Collaborate with your child to select toys and books that are no longer used and together choose a charitable institution to share these items with. Talk with your child when a relative or friend becomes ill and offer to serve together in some capacity or make something special to lift the spirits of the ill person. Finding ways to develop your child’s sensitivity to the needs of others will prove to be simpler than you think.
Our lives are full of opportunity to be kind and share a little of ourselves with others. It truly is a simple thing to acknowledge a need and do our best to meet it.