The 3 Phrases Your Child Needs to Hear From You Daily
Kids learn a lot from what they hear on a regular basis.
Posted November 24, 2020 | Reviewed by Ekua Hagan
My work gives me the honor of coaching adults from all walks of life. Some are incredibly successful and very financially comfortable, many are up and coming entrepreneurs running incredible startups, some are couples committed to improving their marriage, others have health challenges, and many right now are parents who want to learn how to make life, career, and kids all work together during these unprecedented times.
Regardless of background, age, country, profession, or even what life issue has brought them to coaching, I have found that every single one of my clients, myself included, is trying to heal what we didn’t hear, or see, or feel in childhood. In some form, we go out into the world trying to get one or more of the following: Love/Approval or Safety/Control.
Some of us do it through our work, or making money, having things planned out; some do whatever it takes to be someone, have a reputation, be significant in the world; others do it through their relationships and their kids, or through their outside appearance.
Which one is it for you and what is your primary vehicle for getting these needs met?
Regardless of what strategy we all use, let's look at what our kids really need to hear from us so they can go out into the world feeling full as opposed to needing the world to tell them who they are. Remember, they learn through visual cues, auditory cues, and kinesthetic cues (what they feel).
Auditory is often what is missing as many kids and adults tell me some version of, "I never heard my parents say ..."
In our home, we have been telling our son since the day he was born, the following three phrases:
- You are loved.
- You are safe.
- You are good enough.
There isn’t a day that he hasn’t heard them, either from my husband or me. We say them at night before sleep. Sometimes my son says them back to me.
Let's look at each individually.
You are loved is different from saying I love you. I love you implies that love only comes from you, the parent or caregiver. It also means that love can be taken away or disappear if something happens. "I" makes it mean something about you first, not your child. "You are loved" makes it about them first, it calls in love from many sources, including the Universe (Life, Nature) itself, which for those who have been reading my work, know that this connection to something bigger is a very important source of love for children.
You are safe. Many kids do not feel safe. They hear the news, they pick up fear energetically from their parents, and they often make assumptions in their heads and imagine the worst. Reminding them that they are safe, that they will be taken care of no matter what, that safety starts in the mind, brings them feelings of inherent safety.
You are good enough. This is probably my favorite. We live in a world where "good enough" isn’t acceptable. We directly and indirectly tell our kids that they need to be more, do more, study more, win more, change a bit more (to fit in)….strive for the best, all the time. It's exhausting. Many adults are still in this "more" mentality and they are burnt out. Telling a child they are good enough is a huge relief for them. They don’t need to perform, keep climbing the never-ending ladder to get love or to be noticed. They don’t need to win or be first. They don’t need to meet our needs or our projections for their future. They are worthy. They are enough. Right now in this moment!
Which phrase was missing for you in your childhood?
Which one do you think your child needs the most right now?
Even if you think your child feels them, or these are just so obvious already, children really need to hear them too. They are listening all the time!