How do we teach children to change from speaking in a negative way to a more positive way? So that the language they use brings people towards them and not push them away? Children are human after all and will use damaging language occasionally.
We cannot be positive all the time – that’s unnatural. What we can do is teach children to not say everything they think so that the words that come out are neutral or more upbeat.
Some children I have worked with will say that friends find them hard work and will often walk away from them when they approach. When discussing what they say to their friends, these children tell me that they don’t say much or when they do say something it’s not usually positive.
They don’t smile and don’t join in with their friends. They don’t show passion on their face or enthuse at what others say. They don’t really want to be a part of the friendship group conversations. Children should learn that it’s not helpful in friendships to be this way.
4 Ways To Encourage Positivity
We need to encourage children to smile more and start to use positive language. We can practise with them at home by doing the following:
Look For Positives: When they say something negative get them to think and say the positive about a situation. Challenge them.
Engage Positively: Ban negative language. Ban frowns -they don’t bring friends. Teach them how to engage in a positive way with their friends – how to banter and chat well and appear interested in other conversations.
Ban Negative Talk: Get them to speak to you without the word ‘but’ or allow them to complain for hours. Maybe suggest they have one minute to moan and then they need to forget and move on from a situation.
Positive Language: Use positive language around children so they copy you and help them to feel good about themselves, especially if they are using negative language about themselves. Help them work on their self-esteem.
Try these tips to help your child combat negative language and behaviour. Negativity can be a habit that we need to break so help your child see the benefits of breaking negative behaviour and swapping it with positive actions and language.
Have you a child who tends to use negative language and expressions? What do you do to help them be more positive? And has it caused a problem with their peer group and friends? I’d love to hear your comments – please reply below or via my social media channels.