If winning is everything, children will cheat.

Yep, your family has a huge effect on who you are as a person, what you do with your life, and the kind of life you ultimately decide to live.

That’s why it’s so important for families to share life lessons through the generations. After all, if you’re so influential in each other’s lives, why wouldn’t you want to share your knowledge and experiences with one another to make sure that each person has all the wisdom, courage and knowledge you could ever wish for them?

This is the beauty of sharing the things you’ve learnt about life. Not only do you leave a legacy that future generations will always remember, but you have the ability to set your kids up to flourish later in life by teaching them what you know. For all the parents out there, here are five life lessons that you should definitely teach your kids. Click here to find out more about funeral and life cover.

Be kind and respectful

And not just parents or elders, but everybody, including themselves/ Regardless of age, race, gender, job or anything else, all people deserve basic kindness and respect from one another. Respect for authority and elders helps with obedience. Kindness to themselves will boost their self-esteem, respect for themselves will increase their sense of self-wroth and their ambition. Instilling respect for the poor, the elderly, and the vulnerable will make sure you have kids who have a strong sense of what is fair and just. This is something you have to demonstrate, not just teach. If you treat your kids and other people kindly and with respect, they’re likely to follow suit.

 

Be gracious in victory and defeat

Nobody likes a sore loser, nor a smug winner. Whether they win or lose, expect your children to be kind and courteous to everyone who competed or participated.  They can of course be proud of themselves when they win, but they shouldn’t feel humiliated or ashamed if they lose – and nor should they make others feel like that. After all, if winning is everything, children will cheat.

 

Be bold

Determination is a trait to be valued and encouraged. You want your kids to be tenacious and not afraid of trying to achieve their dreams. Encourage your children to always get back up after a fall, and not to allow fear, anxiety of nervousness rule their lives from a young age. Helping them to conquer nerves one small step at a time and praising them for being courageous will go a long way towards helping your child later in life.

 

Always speak the truth

Kids are prone to lies and exaggeration, as you’ll know! However, honesty will go a long way in this life, and your kids need to know that they can be honest with you no matter what. Lies can quickly spiral out of control so honestly should be highly valued in your household. The expectation of honesty should also be addressed in the small ways right from the start – if your child is fabricating a story for more attention, ask them about the real story and let them know that it is just as interesting (or even more interesting!) and that there’s no need to lie about things.

Of course, with younger kids you don’t want them to accidentally tell their little brother what their Christmas gift is or spoil a well-planned surprise party, so you need to address that too! A good way to teach your children this is to enforce that there are no secrets in your house, only surprises. This lets your kids know that it’s ok to have surprises like birthday presents or parties, and that they don’t have to spill the beans in the name of being honest.

 

Mistakes are ok

Everyone makes mistakes. Sometimes they’re big mistakes, and sometimes they’re smaller ones like knocking over a glass. Make sure your kids know that mistakes are ok as long as they learn from them, and as above – as long as they are honest about them. Breaking a glass is a mistake and that’s ok, but blaming it on your brother or trying to hide it from mom and dad is lying, and that isn’t ok. If your child fails a maths test or falls off his bike, that’s ok too. Figure out where things went wrong and then try to fix that problem calmly and productively.

When they’re older, your kids will take responsibility for their actions. Better yet, mistakes in their lives and careers won’t be a huge setback for them, just a learning opportunity.