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Our words have a powerful impact on our children. They can build them up or tear them down. Check out our list of 70 positive words for kids. Use a few of these phrases every day to build your children’s self esteem and confidence.
Have you ever recognized your own voice in your child’s play? Children are wonderful mimics. They absorb everything that is going on around them and then mirror it in their play.
This is particularly true of words. Our children will copy our vocabulary, our accent, and any particular phrases we say often. Sometimes it can be quite funny. Other times it can be downright uncomfortable. Our kids pick up and carry our words with them from a very early age.
The power of positive words
Think about this for a moment. Our words have tremendous power, so with a single sentence we can
- Give hope
- Convey love
- Tell wonderful stories
- Express understanding
- Forge Connection
And those are all good things in families right? But as we all know words can also be damaging and harmful.
I recently watched a compelling video that talks about the power of words. Take a few moments and watch it now.
Pretty thought provoking right? This video really made me think about the way in which I used my words. As a mother it challenges me to consider the impact of MY words on my children. Take a few moments to reflect on the ways your words are affecting your relationships with your children.
Do your words
- Build bridges or walls?
- Display forgiveness, or harden hearts?
- Convey irritation or love?
- Build up or tear down?
- Express acceptance or shame?
- Make our children’s day?
Quite simply, positive words from significant adults do wonders for children. Do you remember the words of encouragement you received as a child? Did you have a parent, teacher or other family member that built up your confidence and helped you believe in yourself? Unfortunately the reverse is also true as discouraging words have the power to destroy confidence. This is powerful stuff and kids will carry these positive (or negative) words for years to come.
We need to be louder than all the other voices
As your child grows and moves out in the world, they will start to listen to the voices of others. The harsh voices of bullies and the even shriller voice of social media and commercials. Here’s the scary part – many of those voices will tell our kids they don’t measure up. We need to be louder and more persistent than those other voices. Let’s go on the offensive and let our kids understand how truly amazing they are.
Ready to get started? Below, you’ll find a list of 70 positive things you can say to your children.
70 positive words for kids to start using today
Words of praise
Praise is a powerful thing, but it has to be used carefully or it can have a detrimental effect. Remember the 3 principals – be short, sincere, and specific. Most importantly it is vital to praise the effort or process, rather than your child’s talent or intelligence. Read 6 proven ways to encourage Kids effectively (without side effects). Here are some phrases you can start using.
- It’s generous of you to ….
- I’m really impressed with how hard you worked on ……
- You’ve worked hard on (describe project) and you’re doing great.
- I like how you use words to describe your feelings.
- You’ve really persevered at ….. look at what you’ve accomplished so far
- I can see you’ve put in a lot of effort at….. you can do it.
- I appreciate what a good (name trait) you are.
- It was really helpful when you
- You really worked hard on…… I’m proud of you
- I appreciate it when you …
- You figured it out ― that’s awesome!
- I saw how you (name action) for (name friend). You are a really good friend.
- You are getting better at
- I appreciate the kind way you responded just then.
Positive words to use when things are not going well
In general making mistakes is an important part of growing up. Mistakes can be one of the most effective teachers your children have.
Children need to be reassured that mistakes are not the end of the world, that every situation is redeemable, and that they will be loved no matter what.
Here are a few phrases to use when your child is having a hard time or has made a mistake.
- There is no mistake bigger than my love
- You are learning
- You are growing
- Let’s come up with a solution together
- Can we start over?
- Let’s take a deep breath together
- How can you try this a different way?
- I know we can fix this together. Tell me what you’re thinking
- I like the solution you came up with.
- I admire the way you are handling this challenge. Let me know if you need any help.
- Your determination helped you overcome this obstacle.
- Thank you for persevering to solve this problem.
- You can say yes (to something you feel you deserve).
- I love you, and I know you are doing the best you can.
- Can you pinpoint when things got off track? What can you learn from this?
- What do you think you can do about this?
- It looks like you’re having a difficult time. Can you tell me about it?
- You can say no (to your friends or things that make you feel uncomfortable).
- You can do this. If not today, we’ll try again tomorrow.
- You can change your mind
- Everyone makes mistakes. That’s how we learn.
- You can listen to your heart. It knows what you need and deserve
- You can do this, (child’s name). I believe in you.
Encouraging words to use when you want to build confidence
We all want to build our child’s confidence. Here’s a few ways to cheer your child on and let them know you are proud of them.
- Can you teach me how to ..
- When you ….. That was a really good choice.
- Your opinions matter to me.
- I have faith in you.
- You can ask for help when you need it.
- What do you think?
- We are a team and I will always have your back
- I learn a lot from you
- I’m excited about doing this with you
- Let’s do it your way
- I’ve noticed that your (friends/brothers and sisters) really enjoy being with you!
- That’s a good question
- It’s OK to feel . . .
- Your (kindness/honesty/thoughtfulness)serves as a role model to me.
- Thank you for reminding me how fun it is to play.
- We can do this together.
- Watching you grow up is the best
- Thank you for sharing this with me.
- I was just telling (name of important adult) how proud I am of you
Encouraging words to use when you want to show love
Loving words can be used liberally throughout the day. They are particularly good phrases to use at bedtime or when you are sending your kids off in the morning.
- I love to watch you ….
- You are valuable to me.
- Your ideas are wonderfully creative.
- I enjoy spending time with you
- You’re an important member of this family
- I trust you!
- We feel blessed to have you our my lives.
- I am so glad to be your mum/dad.
- You make me smile.
- I will never stop loving you.
- You are special to me
- I love you just the way you are right now
- You are important to me.
Just before I finish this post I just want to remind you of something important. We all live through days where everything seems to go horribly wrong. We wake up with the best of intentions and yet events seem to conspire against us and in frustration we can find ourselves yelling or spitting out harsh and damaging words.
Do not despair, for even on those hard days we have access to the most powerful words of all. We just need the courage to speak them.
- “I’m sorry. I was wrong. Please forgive me.”
So are you ready to give it a go? You have 70 examples of positive phrases you can use with your kids. Think about how you might sprinkle these phrases throughout the day. Add a couple from the list each week and find ways to use them. Then watch your kids grow. Trust me. You’ll be glad you did.
Do you have any favorite words of encouragement you like to use with your family? What are your best positive words for kids