This final week of our KINDNESS FRUIT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT focus, looks at EMPATHY.
9 Essential Habits of Empathetic Children
Habit 1: Emotional literacy. Teaching emotion literacy as the gateway to empathy so children can recognise and understand the feelings and needs of others in their body language, voice tone or facial expressions.
Habit 2: Moral Identity. Helping children develop ethical codes and caring mindsets so they are more likely to adopt caring values that guide their integrity and activate their empathy to feel with and help others.
Habit 3. Perspective taking. Stretching perspective so children can step into others’ shoes to understand another person’s feelings, thoughts, and viewpoints.
Habit 4. Moral Imagination. Using elevating, emotionally-charged images in literature, film, news and images as a source of inspiration to help children connect with empathy.
Habit 5. Self-Regulation. Helping children learn ways to manage strong emotions and reduce personal distress to keep their empathy open, avoid the Empathy Gap and be more likely empathise and to help others.
Habit 6. Practicing Kindness.Developing and exercising kindness and pro-social behaviours to increase children’s concern about the welfare and feelings of others and enhance the likelihood that they will step in to help, support or comfort others.
Habit 7. Collaboration. Cultivating teamwork and collaborative abilities to help kids work with others to achieve shared goals for the benefit of all and develop a WE, not ME mindset.
Habit 8. Moral Courage. Promoting moral courage and teaching children ‘Upstander’ as opposed to ‘bystander’ skills and situational awareness to embolden them to speak out, step in, and help others.
Habit 9. Compassionate Leadership Abilities. Cultivating altruistic leadership abilities to motivate children to make a difference for others, no matter how small it may be and boost their chances of becoming Social Change-makers.
What Are You Doing to Cultivate the Nine Habits?
Which empathy habits are you helping your children acquire within your family?
Which empathy habits might you be overlooking?