We can have an impact on how kids view their own identities.
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“Who do you think you are?”
 
If you were a mischievous kid like I was, you might have heard an exasperated adult ask this question at least a few times while growing up.
 
We don’t recommend the above as a behavior management technique — but we do want to be intentional about shaping kids’ identities.
 
We would love to see more young people whose identities incorporate ideas like:
 
“It’s not all about me. I’m here to help others… not just myself.”
   “There is something bigger than me. I have a purpose that goes beyond my day-to-day life.”
   “I am capable of making a positive impact.”
 
To positively shape identity, many wise parents spend some time (informal times are great — perhaps while doing chores, playing games, taking a walk or a drive) asking questions about kids’ interests, goals, and about things they feel they do well.
 
The idea is to be intentionally planting some “you are capable” and “to give is better than to receive” seeds.
 
We like conversations that include:
 
   Asking them how they plan to solve problems:
“I’m interested to see how you decide to solve this.”

 
   Getting them talking about their strengths and victories:
“How did you do that?”
“I noticed you like to draw. Tell me more about that."

 
   Asking which problems they would like to contribute solutions for:
“What are some ways you would like to make a difference in the world?”
“How do you plan to be part of the solution?”

 
With some intentionality and a few of the right questions, we can have an impact on how kids view their own identities. And we know their identity will affect their behavior.
 
Jim Fay - BiographyThanks for reading! Our goal is to help as many families as possible. If this is a benefit, forward it to a friend.
 
Jedd Hafer

 

 
 
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Lakewood, CO - July 27, 2019
 
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