Our latest research suggests that success in life depends more on high moral character rather than IQ. So many parents today are focused on academics, class ranking, sports and being competitive rather than teaching what really helps their kids be successful for the long term.
Try these tips for raising kids with morals and values.
1. Be a good role model.
Model the virtues you want your child to espouse. Walk the walk instead of talking the talk. Are you kind, truthful, and compassionate as you do life? Ask yourself what your child is seeing from you daily.
2. Set the expectation.
Expect moral behavior and hold your child accountable. “In our family, we help others in their time of despair.” Teach them that serving others is a virtuous act.
3. Focus on the positives.
Make your home a positive and encouraging one rather than negative and discouraging. Catch them exhibiting moral behavior and point it out. “I noticed you treated your friend with respect.” “You were honest when I asked you what happened.” We all know that positive attention usually makes kids want to repeat the action.
4. Adversity is good.
It is good and perfectly acceptable for kids to struggle. This is hard for many parents, but keep in mind that adversity makes us who we are and builds strength.
5. Identify strengths.
Help them identify their strengths: “You seem to feel proud of yourself when you use your self-control.” “You forgave her for the really mean thing she said to you.”