Our kids look to us for confirmation that they’re doing right in this thing called life. Our words are powerful, and the more we can encourage and build up the littles in our life the better we’ll all be for it. Affirmation notes are an incredible tool for positive parenting and/or in the classroom.
What is a note of affirmation?
If you are not well-versed in the positive mindset movement that was big even when I was a teen, then the phrase “positive affirmation” might feel a bit foreign to you. But don’t let it trip you up. An affirmation is simply a positive statement that affirms what you want a person to believe about themself. (At least that’s my interpretation.)
I love giving my kids (even my husband!) notes of affirmation because they allow my words to be an encouragement even when I’m not there. And in most cases, positive thoughts spoken out loud are a child’s love language. (According to this amazing book.)
Why are positive affirmations important?
As a mom, and as a teacher, I have seen multiple benefits from taking a little bit of time to be purposeful with my words. Here are just four ways in which I have found that positive affirmation has made an impact on my own children:
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1. It helps build a child’s self-esteem.
When our redhead was a young child, she was incredibly worried about what people thought of her. She would break down in tears if she believed her hair was out of place or her outfit might not be acceptable to her friends. This negative thinking started in kindergarten!
I knew my child was gifted in creativity and was being thwarted by insecurity so I started working on her a little at a time. Every day, I complimented her choice of clothes and found something unique to highlight. When she tried a new hairstyle, I encouraged both the attempt and the execution. Things like that.
I didn’t just tell her she was beautiful–although I did–I wanted her to look at herself in a different way. I wanted her to see what I saw. It took time, lots of it, but now she’s going into Jr. High and she’s the coolest kid I know. I wish I had the confidence at her age that she has now!
She still struggles at times and she still asks me if she looks good but for the most part, she knows her style, and the confidence shows.
2. It gives them a growth mindset.
We all deal with negative self-talk and/or low self-esteem. Even the most confident people we know struggle with these in some way. Negative thoughts are natural to us all, but if left unchecked, they can stunt a child’s confidence and growth.
That’s why teaching our children to find a more positive outlook is so important! It fosters creative thinking which opens doors. I have never been a “self-help” kind of person, but there is something to be said for a positive mindset. It’s powerful!
A great example: this awesome blog post talks about celebrating kids’ failures which completely changed my mindset not only in the area of parenting but in business, too!
3. It teaches them that encouraging words are powerful.
When I started each of my businesses, I had some really tough days. I remember one night when I was a blubbering mess because moving my business email to another host messed some things up and I was struggling to figure out what went wrong.
My girls saw that I needed some serious affirmation so they each left a positive note on the glass panels of my office door and I cannot express how their kindness touched me.
Words are powerful. It doesn’t matter who says them, they have the momentum to change situations for the better or make things much worse. Our kids are watching our example, and I’m so thankful my girls at least caught this much because I really needed them that day!
4. It teaches them to love.
Love is the one thing that benefits both the receiver and the giver and when a child learns from a young age the value of love and kindness and encouragement, they (and those in their world) will be the better for it.
When your child is on the receiving end, they grow in more ways than we can even understand. And when they are the ones giving, that’s love in action and that kindness keeps on giving long after the moment has passed.
One of my favorite birthday gifts I’ve ever received was from our middle child. She spent a great deal of time making a jar full of positive words and things to make me laugh so that I could open one whenever I needed a little encouragement. I keep it on my desk and take one out every so often and I’m telling you, they work!
Clever ways to Give Affirmation Notes to Your Kids
There is nothing better than finding an unexpected card from someone who loves you. I remember just recently returning from my parent’s home 500 miles away and finding a little note from my dad in the book I was reading. I felt so incredibly loved!
- Lunch Box Notes are one of my favorite affirmations!
- Sprinkle flour on your counter and write something in it for your kid to find.
- Or use window crayons to leave notes on nearly any surface; my kids love this!
- Hang positive wall art where they’ll see it often.
- Post something positive about your child on social media.
- Keep cards on hand for rough days and leave them on their bed, dresser, etc.
- Leave a scribbled note in their school notebooks.
- Add encouraging stickers to their planner pages.
- Have a message board where you can encourage your kids with daily affirmations.
These are just a few of the ways you can pass on some positive love notes to your kids without much effort. And if you struggle with affection or showing love one-on-one, this is an excellent way to break into the habit. From there, I hope your relationship with your child only grows!
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