RAISING GENEROUS KIDS
This article about how to raise generous kids was so touching to me, particularly because I have been thinking a lot lately about unmerited gifts (grace) and how much of my work focuses on connection and creating conditions for giving from the heart.
As Ron Lieber states, one of the best reasons to be generous is to "honor your own family's history of having been helped."
The process is simple.
Share with your older children how much you've been helped.
Share how much your parents, grandparents, relatives and siblings have been helped.
Reflect on how these gifts have changed the course of your life.
Flooding our thoughts with the remembrances of generosity we have received, we are reminded of why we are compelled to be generous to others.
Focusing on the generosity of others benefits us psychologically, and helps to rewire our brains for gratitude, abundance and safety rather than anxiety, scarcity and insecurity. It can create a sense of hope and a mindset of possibility and abundance even in dire circumstances.
If you don't know how your family has been helped, make a phone call. Chances are, your loved ones will be open to sharing how they, their parents or grandparents were recipients of the kindness and generosity of others, and it may have changed the course of your lineage.
Simply sharing how your family has been helped invites children to understand our interdependence. In a culture that often promotes autonomy over interdependence (rather than valuing them mutually), this can be a lovely reflection on how we thrive together, through both being helped and helping others.
As you look at the gifts you've received, you may see direct correlation to the actions that you choose in giving back - be it volunteering, mentorship, contributing to scholarships or donating food or money. Illustrating this connection for your child can help them to understand the value of contributing to others. Along the way, it can help them to get to know their family history better, gain perspective for other’s experiences, and understand past events that have shaped their life.
As my gift to you, here's a downloadable PDF workbook to get you started. Wishing you lots of love and giving from the heart in the New Year.