Growing up with a single parent I was at a disadvantage, but this doesn’t mean I was going to lose in life. My mom was always positive growing up. She wasn’t the type to pour in just to make me feel good. She would say things at the right time, so I knew when she said it she meant it. The most important thing though is that she never discouraged me! Sometimes the most powerful things you can say to your kids are not always positive, sometimes they need to hear the hard truth. Then there are the things we don’t say to our kids are just as important. Note: This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.
The most powerful things you can say to your kids
Probably one of the most important things we can do in life is raise our kids with love. One of those things is what we say to them. Negative outweighs positive in most things, so speaking positive over our kids is a must. I still remember some of the mean things kids said to me back in the day. I remember thinking back then, how much stronger the negative words were. I want to share with you some of the best things we can say to our kids to help them in all they do. They will appreciate it now and forever.
1. Telling our kids the truth even when it hurts
Kids ages 9+ are at the age where they know the difference when they are doing good or bad at something. Sometimes when they do bad, they think they are not good enough. This is a lie that that voice between our ears is telling us. When these things happen just correct your thinking with positive.
Then there are other times our kids might think they are doing so great or maybe they don’t but as parents we need to tell them. Telling our kids the truth when it’s going to hurt their feelings is hard, but at least when we tell them good things they will believe us. Telling kids the truth even when it hurts helps them trust us as parents or even coaches.
2. Words that build courage in our children
As a youth soccer trainer, I find many ways to build players up. Sometimes you have to build them up when they are down. When someone else believes in us, it helps us believe in ourselves. One example I will give is when I am training and a player makes not one mistake but 2 or 3 in a row, I quickly tell them “It’s okay – no worries” which helps lower their anxiety or frustration.
The powerful things you can say to your kids can be said in a tone. The tone in which we tell them is also important. We could tell them the same thing, but if I tell them in a energetic understanding way and you tell them in a frustrated way they are going to respond better to my encouragement because they hear and feel it. Here are 3 ways to help boost confidence on and off the field.
3. Telling your kid that you believe in them
This is by far and forever is going to be the most powerful things you can say to your kids. Whether it’s a friend, parent, coach or teacher, hearing the words “I believe in you” is going to impact that person greatly. We all have times where we doubt ourselves and then start to wonder if others are doubting us. Sometimes all it take is one person to believe in you for you to believe in you. A mix of telling your kids positive things they want to hear and then truth that maybe they don’t want to hear helps them believe you when you are encouraging. By far one of the most powerful things you can say to your kids.
4. Asking your kids what their opinion is
Kids want to talk and when we let them we can learn so much! Back in the day adults didn’t want to hear anything from a kid, but nowadays we are finding that kids respond better if they are included sometimes. It helps them feel a part of something that means so much in their life. Kids are told what to do all day long, whether it be at school, home, activities. So ask your kids or player what they think every now and then. It doesn’t mean ask them their opinion on everything, just every now and then. It shows you respect them and they will respect you even more for it. By far this is one of the most powerful things you can say to your kids.
5. That you guys will work as a team
We are all different and so you have to find the best way to communicate and work like a team. So telling your kids that you will work like a team helps them support you, and reminds them you got their back. Some people might make out list to follow or goals to set. One thing for sure is that in anything we do communication is where things break down or stay strong. Talk to your kids and make sure that you are all getting things off your chest. Find little ways that help your kids communicate better. Some kids might open up more in the morning, while others open up more at night. Maybe you make a list of things that work and don’t work. Split testing to find out what is best for your family is something that will help.
Getting kids to trust you through actions and words
I have 2 children both girls and I also train 75+ kids each week in small groups or 1on1 coaching. I am always trying to improve in what I do, and part of that is asking all the kids questions. This way I know what they are all thinking or going through. This helps me help more kids down the line, which is the ultimate goal. Helping kids feel better about themselves and getting them to know they can trust you. This is vital if you want relationship with kids. For coaching you have to know when to coach and when to just let them play and not over coach.
A lasting legacy
What do we want our loved ones to think of when people ask “What’s the relationship like with your parents.” I know I want my kids to right away to think of how I encourage them and how I am honest with them. Have you ever seen someone light up with joy when they speak of their parents? Yes, and then you have seen people do the opposite. The most powerful things you can say to your kids is something you can start doing now. There are certain things we remember hearing, so let them be words that lift our kids up.