In my previous articles, I have emphasized how crucial it is for us, adults, to be watchful with our own words, especially when we are facing the children. Oftentimes, a lot of adults sometimes tend to forget that the children are sure to imitate from the words to the deeds, even down to the stream of thoughts. They copy everything.
When we say or do something to our children, we ought to bring to mind one question. This should pervade in every stream of our lives and it should be our guiding light each time we deal with the little ones: WHAT IF IT’S YOU? We ought to keep that question in our hearts all the time. There was once way back in 2015 that I scolded my second daughter Audrey for spilling her drink all over the floor. My sister Joefel just sat on one side, observing the whole scene. She then muttered the question to me and I stopped short with my business.
I stepped back and looked at Audrey. I was scolding her for not having a good grip of the glass, those wee little hands must have done their best but maybe they slipped.
Right. What if it’s you? What if it’s you in the child’s place? What words would you prefer? Would you really like tongue lashing? What if it’s you who must sulk in fear because Mama or Papa is so mad at you for failing or for not having a good grip with the glass, or for the million reasons that may cause Mama or Papa to be mad? Maybe if you put your feet on the shoes of the children, we will think again.
It is said that by the time your child reaches 10, she will have received over 10,000 admonitions from adults around her. By that time too, she will have formed inside her thought programs that will become her autopilot responses with the many things that she may need to encounter throughout life.
What does this mean, then? This means that if we have told her all the hurtful things when she was little then she will most likely hurl hurtful words to others too. When we tell her beautiful things that nourish her spirit and educate her soul, then she will also be uttering those words to people around her.
Although there will come a time when she may have to decide for the words herself instead of those autopilot responses. But of course, we cannot risk living as a terrible example and expect the child to deliver otherwise.
Therefore, we ought to strive to make the question stated above alive in us. This question can be a gateway to understanding our self, our emotions, and our thoughts. It will open our eyes to the little human being whom we are dealing with. I have emphasized before that if we want to raise our children the best way possible, then we must also be able to raise ourselves better than our previous self. Our children are evolving and to keep up with them, we must also invite growth for ourselves so that we can nurture them better.
Joan Mae Soco-Bantayan is a teacher at Tuburan Institute, Inc. She is also a wife and a mother of two. For questions and comments, feel free to drop her an e-mail at email@example.com or visit her Facebook page, Joan Mae Soco.
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