I used to say "with a happy heart" as I spoke with a child who seemed to be less than joyful.
It was saying to him please be kind or please have a positive outlook.
But feelings are REAL .we *feel what we feel* and let's face it, sometimes we are not too happy. That's ok. What IS important, is to acknowledge what we DO feel and go from there. ....
A child needs to be allowed to feel, to be encourged to let it all out, whether it's a good feeling or a bad feeling. It is what it is. It shouldn't be hidden or hushed up or minimized but felt with full force, unheeded, with raw emotion and awareness and not tucked away to cause anguish at another time.
How else will a child learn to cope if he can't express his emotions freely? When feelings are acknowledged, people feel valued .Our emotions are part of who we are.
It empowers a child to be able to feel and handle his own emotions, to know what he needs when he needs it. It could be yelling and screaming, going off alone, punching a pillow, or running and jumping. Only the child knows what he truly needs and we can help them all along the way.
So next time there's a cranky toddler in a store or some sibling rivalry going on or your teen has an attitude, breathe and allow them to feel. Then see what you can do to help.
Our children are our partners in the journey of life.
May you have a happy heart . . . most of the time :)
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