Thursday, November 6, 2008

Is my child happy?

OMG. This is the toughest question I had been asked as a mother. Thought out these years, I had tried to make sure that Chloe is healthy, organized activities that will stimulate her and loved her unconditionally.
Of course in the midst of educating her, sometimes I may be strict at her; for example not allowing her to go into the kitchen when I was cooking. I always tried to balance up work and family. I tend to spend more time playing with her when I am free. Nevertheless, is my child really happy?
'The best predictors of happiness are internal, not external' says Edward Hallowell, psychiatrist and author of The Childhood Roots of Adult Happiness.
This is a short note on how to raise a happy child
1) Learn to read the signs when something makes him happy or sad
Chloe will throw tantrums and become clingy whenever she is upset
2) Make room for fun
Play with them. Connect with them.
3) Help them develop their talents.
Ok, I must admit that I am not good in this. Chloe (a little girl) is very keen in cars. Everyday she will ask me to let her play with car and today, she just dismantled the wheel. I never like the idea of her playing with a boy's toy but I guess I need to let her do what she is best in.
4) Healthy bodies equal happy children.
Lots of sleep, exercise and healthy diet.
5) Let them struggle with problem.
This doesn't mean children shouldn't ask for help if they need it, but your role is to help them find a solution, not provide it for them. Learning to deal with life's inevitable frustrations and setbacks is critical to your child's future happiness.
If your child develops a sense of independence and confidence, it can lead to greater self esteem and happiness. One way to help your toddler develop these qualities is to have him practice playing alone for ten to 15 minutes several times a day.
6) Allow them to be sad or mad
It's simply part of life.

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