In society today, we receive news and media coverage faster than ever before. Our children can easily overhear updates about national disasters on the radio in the grocery store. They see photos on magazines at the checkout counter. They hear about world problems from classmates at school. No matter the method of intake, it is impossible to protect our children from every piece of bad news, whether the news is personal, community, national or world.
As parents, how can we display and impress upon our children’s hearts that God is in control? Today I’m sharing five simple ways to help children feel secure. These suggestions are everyday ideas that can be easily overlooked when encountering stressful situations.
5 Simple Ways to Help Children Feel Secure
1. Show affection through hugs and kisses.
Showing physical affection to children encourages them like nothing else can. The security of knowing that mom and dad care enough to give them a high five or rub their head at any moment can go a long ways. When children grow older, it’s easy to forget that a hug or a kiss is still a great reminder of a parent’s love. Strive to remember to give physical affection even through the teen years.
2. Take time to enjoy physically caring for them.
For little ones, don’t forget to take a few minutes to play in the bathtub. With older children, make their favorite meal or have them join you in the kitchen to make a snack. Find a new way to do an old thing. Recently I bought new water bottles for my boys to use during baseball season. Simple and inexpensive, but they loved it!
3. Give verbal encouragement.
With my crew of seven children, some days can feel like I’m a drill sergeant giving out orders. “Did you do your homework?” “You should probably get in the shower now.” “Please put your bag where it belongs.” If you’re like me, then it’s easy to get bogged down with all the to-do’s so you need the reminder to encourage your children. Use 20 things to say to encourage your children as a tool to remember to give verbal encouragement to your kids.
4. Provide written encouragement.
Write a lunch box note. Send a text. Leave a note under their pillow. Write on the bathroom mirror with dry-erase marker. I know a family who keeps a stack of post-it notes in the kitchen and they leave fun and encouraging notes for one another all around the house, sometimes in odd places for extra silliness.
5. Choose and maintain daily routines.
Every day won’t be perfect, but I’ve found that if I focus on one or two family routines, we can maintain those regularly. Children love to be able to anticipate what’s next and this provides security in their lives. We like to have dinner together as many nights as we can. We’ve also found that maintaining a bedtime routine is a great way to encourage the heart of your child. Spending a few moments reading together each night is a wonderful way to build your child’s feeling of security. Listening to a parent’s voice is also reassuring for children.
A wonderful new resource to incorporate into your family’s bedtime routine is the Sparkly Bedtime Holy Bible. Specifically designed for children ages 4-8, the sparkle doesn’t simply come from the foil stars on the cover, but from the inspiration within. Inside its beautiful pages are dozens of color inserts that focus on themes of rest, security, encouragement, and love that will soothe little ones at nap time, bedtime, or anytime they need a calming presence from our God who loves them most.
You may not be able to implement all of the above ideas, but choosing one can make a difference in your child’s feelings of security.
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What ideas have you implemented that have helped your child feel secure? Leave a comment on our blog! We want to hear from you!