Being a generous human being is one of the most attractive characteristics one can hope to have. Contrary to what most people think, there could be as much joy in giving as in receiving. Growing up, our kids may not be able to understand the power that lies in being generous. Not only is it up to us to teach them about saving, but it’s also up to us to teach them the art of giving back. It takes time and patience but it will be worth it in the end. If you are looking to teach your kids the art of being generous, here are some tips and tricks on how you can make this happen effectively.
Giving or generosity is something that we need to educate our kids at a young age. This usually begins with the notion of sharing. We believe that it is so necessary for our kids to learn not only how to share, but the value of sharing. Some people don’t agree that teaching the concept of sharing is significant. I personally believe sharing is so necessary for us to not only teach our kids but also demonstrate to them as adults.
Sharing is a form of kindness. When we share with others (whether it be our toys, our money/resources, our feelings, or our time), we are ultimately allowing those around us to know that we care. Sharing connects us and helps us to understand others in a better way. Empathy is one of the most powerful things a person can develop. Empathy is the foundation for so many positive things in this world as it allows us to comprehend another person’s thoughts, feelings, and perspective from their point of view rather than from your own. It fires compassion and positive social action. It is what enables us as humans to relate to one another, rather than see only through our differences.
- Give them an example to follow
Our kids are very observational. That is why it would be futile for you to ask them to be generous while you do not exercise the same yourself. They will look to emulate what you do. Find something you can do together and they will start learning how to give. Random acts of kindness can work better with kids. Find places to volunteer as a family or let them make a donation to an organization. Buy products that support goodwill and wear those products.
- Make it a fun time
Giving should not be burdensome. The kids should not feel as if they have been robbed of something when they give. Ask them about how they feel when they help others out. Let them know how good others feel when they receive gifts from them. Make sure they have a say in what and when they give.
- Count your blessings and praise them whenever they are being generous
Praise and positive reinforcement will work well for your kids when they are learning the art of giving. When you find them being generous, praise them and commend them for the action. Teach them the extent to which they can be generous. For instance, they should give away items they do not have use for anymore. And when I say give praise, make sure they know that they don’t need praise to do the right thing.
- Build a ‘Giving’ Mindset
When we build our capacity for empathy, we are also able to build our capacity forgiving. We can look for ways to give to others in a way that empowers rather than enables them. Everybody needs help at different points in their lives. It has been observed that most of the successful people in this world would agree that they didn’t get there alone, but through the generosity of others (whether it be through time, mentoring, assistance, coaching, financial support, or even kindness).
One teaching and metaphysical concept that is prevalent in many other cultures and philosophies are that ‘what you give will come back to you’. Some of us have heard this as ‘you get what you give’, or ‘treat others the way you wish to be treated’, or ‘do unto others as you would have them do unto to you’. This concept is a universal truth that we can create our reality by the actions that we take. If we want more kindness in the world, we need to be more kind. If we want to live in a supportive community, we need to support our community. We are part of the whole.
By really realizing that what we give will help out someone in some way, we can definitely create a beautiful life. The thing people often struggle with is that it doesn’t always come back to us immediately or in ways we would expect, however, if you hold this belief, are patient, and look for blessings you can start to see how this is true. Don’t be greedy by thinking it will eventually come back to you, do this for the betterment of the society.
- Do some giving activities together
There are quite a few age-appropriate ways we can teach our kids the art of giving and gratitude. Below are some ideas for how you can help organize these fun activities into your family’s rhythm and traditions.
- Reach out to an elderly neighbor and handover them some handmade goods or a gift. You can reach out and help your nearby elderly neighbors so that they feel supported and loved.
- Choose items for a food drive and shop from the grocery store together. You should explain that not every kid has food to eat at home and that we should help to make sure that those that are hungry have something to eat. You can maybe even let them pick their favorite snacks to donate or give to a kid.
You can even start from basics, ask your child to organize their things according to their usage. Initially, it would be really tough as they will show some emotional attachment to those things. However, you have to convince them by showing your example. Tell them how attached you are towards your stuff, but you have to clear them out as you’re not using them anymore. Once the things got collected, ask your child to choose any NGO. don’t forget to do your research properly about that NGO, and then drive to it, spend some time over there, let your child donate their stuff. This will help them to bloom more effectively.
- Teach them the importance of giving
When we teach our kids how to give, we are teaching them how to care for others that are their brothers and sisters in this world. We are also making them understand the true meaning of gratitude, compassion, empathy, and love. These are the things that we should care most about in our child’s development. For instance, we shouldn’t worry much about our 3 years old being able to read and write at an early age. Instead, we should worry more about their being able to be kind and show empathy towards others. These characteristics are the foundation for understanding the importance of generosity, kindness, and helping others.
Thus, teaching them that giving is an art, we are adding a pinch of empathy in their behavior. Kids need to understand that whatever they have, from small things like a roof or adequate food to expensive toys and top-notch mobile phones or video games, they all are a blessing anyway!
They should understand that there are certain people who don’t even have access to things which we consider as normal or didn’t show any importance to. It’s totally in parents’ hands how they turn their kids to be. Teach them well by setting an example and make this a real family-fun time!