Selfishness: is your child ever self-absorbed? Well, we hope so, since that is in the “kid job-description” for the first 20 years. But learning to go from selfishness to selflessness doesn’t just happen; it is an on-going, many-times-a day activity, where everyone has to give and take and everyone THINKS he or she is giving more than taking. Enter grumpiness. So keep that selfish thought in mind while we explore two articles on habits and how they help families teach kids to go from being selfish to becoming selfless.
The first article was in the Journal of School Health where about 1000 5th-6th grade students’ standardized test scores and family habits were analyzed. The kids with the best test scores had the following habits: no bedroom TV, healthy weight, being physically fit, eating healthy foods with rare fast foods or sugar drinks, and getting over 8 hours of sleep.
The second article in the Journal of Adolescent Health found that kids aged 10 to 14 who lived in homes with parents who had consistent rules for safety and had consequences and rewards for behaviors, were less likely to have sex at early ages, and they did better in school.
Home Life matters! Habits start at least by the time the baby is born, whether we realize it or not! So, what habits are you forming? It’s never too late to start good habits; it is just harder if you don’t start them early in your child’s life. So timing is the key; timing of habits, (like good sleep, eating those 5 vegetables and fruits, 3 calcium products and 2 proteins, and an hour of hard play daily) to allow kids to be selfish at first, but to learn to be selfless for others with age… and you get to selfishly enjoy and learn about life, again, through young exploring eyes…Grumpiness be gone!