Well, we have come to the end of our first month of exploring the virtue of Understanding. You will recall that Benedict found his new friends to be understanding of his hesitancy to talk to them. With the example of his new friends, Benedict was able to reach out and trust. How do you model the virtue of Understanding? Try this:
Flip the script! Although we often shelter our children from the struggles, disappointments, and challenges we face in our day, it could be very beneficial for our children to see that parents sometimes have difficult days, too. Ask your child if you could share a story with them. Children love stories, especially ones told by their parents. Share a simple struggle you had recently at work or elsewhere. It doesn’t have to be too dramatic or too detailed, just something that paints a picture of a struggle you experienced. Invite your child to listen closely. When you are finished with your story, invite your child to retell the story – you may need to help them with some details. After your story is re-told, ask your child for some advice about how you might be able to deal with the situation. Never underestimate the wisdom and innocence of a child. They may cut through a lot of the layers that often get in the way for us.
A Little Praise Goes a Long Way
In the end, thank your child for listening to your story. Thank your child for the help and advice he or she offered, but most importantly tell your child that the fact he or she listened to your story meant the most to you because he or she took the time to understand your struggle. Tell your child he or she is really good at listening and that people who listen well are really good at understanding, and how you hope they will continue to listen and understand at school, at home, and throughout their life.
I hope you enjoyed September and the virtue of Understanding. Next month, during October, we will explore the virtue of Forgiveness. Sometimes a very hard thing to do . . .
Have a wonderful week!
Thanks for being a Good Egg!