The surprising and highly important gift you can give to your child
I feel that most parents are deeply willing to love their children as best as they can and give them the best chances to thrive in life.
I would like to give my view on what I believe is the most important thing we can give our children and also talk about another very important gift we can give them, and which is often surprising to people.
The most important gift we can give to our child is to see, accept and love who they are. Our children are not a mini-us and they have their own identity. Some aspects of this identity are related to their age, some to their personality, some to the environment they live in (both human and material). Their identity comes with needs, values, qualities and skills.
The reason why I say it is the most important thing is because if we take this attitude as a compass our decisions as parents will be good for them. We basically put ourselves in our children’s shoes and so we can see they have different needs than us and also some common needs with us.
But there is another gift we can give to our children, one that often surprises people I tell. This is the gift of loving ourselves. Yes, you have heard me right, not them but us.
I am not talking here about loving ourselves because we think we are the best or because we are successful or because we are handsome etc. I am talking of loving ourselves deeply, for who we truly are, for our values, for our commitment to building a meaningful life for ourselves. I am talking of this love that is unconditional, whether we succeed or fail, whether we are confidant or doubtful, whether we are well or in pain.
Yes, I agree, it is not an easy thing to do… but it’s worth it, and actually a great recipe to our own happiness!
But why is it such an important gift for our children?
Well, the first reason is because we are showing them the example of what one needs to do to be happy in life.
The second reason is because when we love ourselves in a gentle and forgiving way, we are more loving to others. We have less expectations and needs for others to fill our inner lack of self-love. It makes us more forgiving as well.
And finally, when we love ourselves, we trust we can build a beautiful life. As a result, we trust our children too can make their own life beautiful. Feeling loved and deeply trusted is invaluable for a child.
I am sure there are many other positive benefits but these are the ones that come to me now. If you think of others, please feel free to share them in the comments section :-)
With my deep trust in human progress!