Words matter! What we say and how we say things to our kids matters immensely. With so much potential influence to what we say, it’s important to make sure that we communicate messages of unconditional love and acceptance, during the good days and the rough ones too.
One fun way to plant seeds of unconditional love in our kids is having repeatable phrases, encouraging nicknames, and fun family code words to remind our kids that they are loved no matter what.
A main staple in our family’s house was my regular pronouncement to my three daughters, “You are special and precious and don’t ever forget it!” Said in a variety of tones and inflections it communicated the unmistakable message that “I love you no matter what. You are mine and I’m really glad that you are!”
It wasn’t long before it turned into a fun little game of sorts, especially at bedtime when all efforts were made to extend connection with parents for any and every reason. When I would say those words, often my kids (one in particular) would reply as I headed for the door, “Daaaaaaddddd, I forgoooottttttt!” With that, I would turn around and say, “Whaaaaaattt?” and come back and tickle her and tell her the message all over again, “You are special and precious and don’t ever forget it!”
Photo Credit: ChristopherBernard iStockphoto.com
The days of small children in our house have passed us by, but the message remains in various forms and fashions. Even recently, with a wink and a smile, I will repeat the phrase to my daughters, now in college, high school and middle school. I say it so they remember what I believe about them. My teens may not respond the same way as toddlers and elementary kids anymore, but the smiles beneath those groans let me know that they get the message.
Apply It Now:
- So what are the cute, corny or fun phrases you say to your children? For example, Jim would get a big intense face and say “I feel so strongly about you!” or Lynne would sing to her daughter, “You’re my girly-girly-girl who I lovey-lovey-love!” — Share your examples in the comments below!
- How do you express to them your committed belief about who they are?
- If someone asked them what you believed about them, what would they say?