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Affirmations for Kids: The Power of Positivity and Social Emotional Learning

Positivity is a powerful tool, and it's never too early to start teaching your children about it.

Positive affirmations for kids can help them learn how to stay optimistic and resilient throughout their lives. Positive affirmations have been proven to "decrease stress, increase well-being, improve academic performance and make people more open to behavior change."

In this blog post, we will discuss how the power of positive affirmations can help children increase their levels of self-confidence and self-love.

We will also provide a list of 10 tips on how to encourage your children to embrace a positive mindset and 37 powerful positive affirmations for kids (and adults) that you can start using today!

Positive Affirmations for Kids

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It may sound like a simple task, but changing our thought patterns can actually be quite difficult. Our brains are wired to pay more attention to negative information than positive information.

This is known as the negativity bias, and it’s evolutionarily beneficial – it helped our ancestors survive by always being on the lookout for danger.

Fortunately, we can use the power of positive affirmations to counteract the negativity bias. We can cultivate positive thoughts when our mental state is one in which we focus on memories, images, and emotions that increase our overall sense of well-being.

When you practice cultivating a more positive outlook, you train your brain to pay more attention to good feelings and thoughts. In return, you radiate positive energy and inner beauty.

Studies have shown that people who avoid negative self-talk and use positive affirmations have improved emotional health and mental health. They are more likely to achieve their goals and experience less stress.

What's more, positive energy is contagious!

When you surround yourself with positive people, their optimistic outlook can rub off on you, and help bolster your positive self-image so that you can continue to spread positive thoughts and feelings to others.

Get joy. Bring joy. Give joy.

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For many children, the power of a positive mindset is often underestimated, but it can be life-changing! Positive affirmations for kids help support and cultivate this mindset.

It is crucial for children to both receive positive affirmations from others and to learn how to create their own positive affirmations in times of doubt, stress, and sadness.

One way to help children find their inner voice and authentic self is through daily positive affirmations. Positive affirmations are statements that help to change negative thinking patterns.

With just one positive affirmation - a few words, and a couple of deep breaths - children can transform difficult thoughts and experiences, boost self-esteem, and learn how to manage emotions while tapping into a deep inner strength.

Daily affirmations such as "I expect great things today", “I am a capable, lovable, and caring person”, and "I choose to find joy" can provide children with a reset, a fresh start that gives them the ability to reframe negative thinking.

Tips to Help Kids Think More Positively

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Positive affirmations for kids help them overcome day-to-day challenges and achieve their greatest goals. It can also help them build resiliency and cope with difficult situations.

There are several things you can do to help focus children's minds and enable them to cultivate a pattern of positive thinking.

Here are 10 tips on how to help empower them to do just that:

1. Identify Negative Thought Patterns

Encourage children to identify their negative thought patterns, paying attention to the thoughts that run through their heads daily. Are they mostly negative?

2. Challenge Negative Thinking

Help them challenge their negative thinking. When they have a negative thought, encourage them to stop and ask themselves whether it’s really true. Chances are, it’s not.

3. Replace Negative Thinking

Once they’ve challenged their negative thoughts, it’s time to replace them with positive ones. Teach children how to identify and reframe negative thoughts using daily affirmations.

For example, if a child is thinking, “I can’t do this,” recommend that they try saying “I can't do this yet” to emphasize the importance of practice and learning, or "I have many talents and great ideas" to remind them that no one can do everything, but we all have our own unique gifts.

4. Set Goals

Encourage kids to set goals and work towards them by breaking down their goals into manageable steps and putting them into words and mental images. This helps them see the power of their own choices.

5. Practice Visualization

Teach children to practice visualization. Visualization is a powerful technique that can help you achieve your goals. Show them how to close their eyes and imagine achieving the goal they've set for themselves. Ask, "what does it feel like?" and "what do you see?". Help them visualize new habits and behaviors that will boost their confidence and self-esteem, and help them succeed. This can have a tremendous positive impact on their overall well-being.

6. Pay Attention to Body Language

Help your kids be mindful of their body language and teach them that their tone of voice matters. Help them understand that these factors can influence their feelings and reactions to situations.

7. Be a Good Example

Model positive thinking for your children. Let them see you face challenges with optimism and a positive attitude, and allow them to see you move forward with grace and self-forgiveness when you fall short of being your most positive and optimistic self.

8. Practice Gratitude and Kindness

Talk to children about the power of gratitude. Encourage them to express gratitude for the good things in their lives. Help them identify even the simplest things to be grateful for, like a rain puddle to slosh in or the beauty of a bird's song.

Encourage small acts of kindness. Help your children understand that they can make a difference in the world by being kind to others, especially when that act of kindness is done without any expectation of thanks or reward.

9. Emphasize Patience

Changing your thought patterns takes time and effort, especially for children. Don’t let yourself or your children get discouraged by a few setbacks along the way. Help them find humor in the situation. Just keep practicing, be a good listener, and eventually, more positively will flourish. Change won't take place in a single day.

10. Make it a Fun

Get creative. Children shouldn't feel as though they have to work hard to achieve a positive mindset. Try making up an affirmations game that your family can play together to help brainstorm new affirmations and foster positive feelings and support. Doing it as a family may help kids feel more comfortable incorporating daily affirmations into their routine. 

Positivity is a Choice

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Often times positivity is a choice. It may not be easy, but it’s worth it, and it can open up a world of new possibilities, new friends, and a myriad of exciting experiences awaiting you and your children. 

"The strongest predictor of children's knowledge about the benefits of positive thinking -- besides age -- was not the child's own level of hope and optimism, but their parents."

- Christi Bamford, Assistant Professor of Psychology at Jacksonville University Positivity and Empowerment

Positive affirmations for kids can help them build the resiliency and confidence to cope with difficult situations.

Daily affirmations can also give children a deep sense of agency and empowerment, helping them see the world as being filled with wonder rather than woe.

The Evidence Behind Affirmations

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The benefits of using positive affirmations for kids are clear.

A growing body of scientific evidence supports the use of daily affirmations and positive thoughts to improve mental health.

"Frontiers in Psychology" found that participants who repeated positive affirmations had increased levels of self-esteem and happiness.

Another study, published in the "Journal of Experimental Social Psychology," found that people who used affirmations were more likely to achieve their goals.

A third study, published in the "Journal of Positive Psychology," found that people who used affirmations had increased levels of happiness, and optimism.

These studies suggest that daily affirmations can have a huge positive impact on your child's life. If you're looking for ways to help your child overcome challenges, build resiliency, and cope with difficult situations, consider using one or many positive affirmations for kids.

In a world where negativity is often portrayed in the media, it's more important than ever to help children focus on the positive. Daily affirmations can help them do just that!

How do you teach and explain affirmations to children?

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Positive affirmations for kids can be practiced in many ways. One way is to write them down and have your child read them aloud every single day.

Morning affirmations are a wonderful way for children to set the tone for their day and put their best foot forward.

You can also record yourself saying affirmations and let your child listen to them throughout the day. This is great for younger kids who cannot read yet. 

Try creating a "vision board" with your child covered in pictures and words that represent what your child wants to focus on and achieve. Be sure to include images that evoke positive thoughts and memories, and don't forget to add pictures of nature, a good friend, and the many wonderful things your child has to be grateful for. 

Another way to teach kids about affirmations is through books. Many great children's books explain positive affirmations for kids in a fun and relatable way. 

A few favorites are "The Magic of Thinking Big" by David J. Schwartz, "You Are Awesome" by Matthew Syed, and "I Can Do Hard Things: Mindful Affirmations for Kidsby Gabi Garcia.

Daily affirmations are powerful because they help change how we think about ourselves and they make us feel stronger. When we say positive things about ourselves, we start to believe them. And when we believe them, our actions begin to mirror them.

When we surround ourselves with positive images and words, we start to see the world in a more positive light. We focus on the good instead of the bad. We are more grateful, and we see possibility instead of impossibility.

So, let's bring on the positive vibes!

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37 Positive Affirmations for Kids

  1. "I am loved."
  2. "I am capable."
  3. "I have a big heart."

  4. "I can do anything I set my mind to."

  5. "I make a difference in the world."

  6. "I am strong."

  7. "I feel comfortable just as I am."

  8. "It's okay to make mistakes- everyone does."

  9. "I am a good friend to myself and others."

  10. "I have many wonderful qualities."

  11. "I'm grateful for what I have and who I am."

  12. "I'm growing and learning every single day."

  13. "My mistakes don't define me."

  14. "I am an amazing person."

  15. "I radiate positive energy."

  16. "I am safe."

  17. "I trust myself."

  18. "I love myself just as I am."

  19. "I am worthy of love and respect."

  20. "It's okay to be different from others."

  21. "My feelings matter."

  22. "I don't have to be perfect."

  23. "I'm allowed to feel angry/sad/frustrated/etc."

  24. "I can ask for help when I need it."

  25. "I am not responsible for other people's feelings."

  26. "I am not responsible for other people's actions."

  27. "Some things are out of my control."

  28. "It's okay to say 'no.'"

  29. "I don't have to please everyone all the time."

  30. "There is more than one right way to do things."

  31. "Forgiving myself is part of taking care of myself."

  32. "I can do hard things."

  33. "I am resilient."

  34. "I can choose how I respond to what happens to me."

  35. "I can always find something to be thankful for."

  36. "My attitude matters."

  37. "I can create the life I want."

The Path to Positivity

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Self-esteem is built on a foundation of positive self-talk. When children learn to speak kindly and encouragingly, using positive statements, they develop a strong sense of self-worth and self-love, and are more likely to speak kindly to others.

Positive affirmations for kids teach them to focus on their strengths, and to view mistakes as opportunities to learn. This is a wonderful way to cultivate happiness within them.

Positive affirmations for kids help them feel capable, confident, and better equipped to solve problems that arise in daily life. When they feel good about themselves, they are more likely to take healthy risks, be their own person, persevere in the face of challenges, and spread positivity.

So, parents and caregivers, encourage your children to focus on having a positive mindset, help them practice positive self-talk, and watch their confidence soar!

Moving forward, you can model these skills for them by speaking kindly and positively to yourself and others. After all, we are our children's first and most important role models, and even our small acts can have a huge impact!

And remember - positivity is contagious!