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Empowering Hearts: Teaching Children How to Practise Self-Kindness

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In a world where compassion and empathy are celebrated virtues, teaching kids the importance of kindness to others is a priority. However, an equally vital lesson that often gets overlooked is teaching children how to be kind to themselves. Just as they learn to treat others with kindness, children should also be empowered to practise self-kindness—a skill that fosters self-esteem, resilience, and emotional well-being. In this article, we will explore the significance of teaching kids self-kindness, practical strategies for doing so, and the lasting impact it can have on their lives.

Understanding Self-Kindness

Self-kindness is the practise of treating oneself with the same compassion, understanding, and care that one would offer to a friend. It involves acknowledging and valuing one’s own feelings, thoughts, and experiences without judgement or harsh criticism. Just as we teach kids to be considerate and caring towards others, we can help them develop the ability to extend that same consideration and care towards themselves.

The Importance of Teaching Self-Kindness to Kids

Building Self-Esteem

When children learn to treat themselves kindly, they develop a positive self-image and a healthy sense of self-worth. They recognize their strengths and capabilities, leading to increased self-esteem.


Self-kindness equips children with the tools to navigate challenges and setbacks with a greater sense of emotional resilience. They learn to respond to failures and mistakes with self-compassion, which fosters a growth mindset.

Emotional Well-Being

Practising self-kindness helps kids manage their emotions and reduces feelings of anxiety and self-doubt. It encourages them to acknowledge their feelings without self-criticism.

Healthy Relationships

Children who are kind to themselves are more likely to cultivate healthy relationships. They develop a strong foundation of self-respect, which influences how they interact with others.

Practical Strategies for Teaching Self-Kindness

Model Self-Kindness

Children learn by observing the behaviours of adults around them. Model self-kindness by speaking kindly to yourself, acknowledging your emotions, and practising self-care.

Encourage Positive Self-Talk

Teach kids to replace negative self-talk with positive and affirming statements. Help them understand that it’s okay to make mistakes and that they should treat themselves with understanding.

Acknowledge Emotions

Help children identify and label their emotions. Encourage them to express their feelings without judgement, and let them know that all emotions are valid.

Practise Self-Care

Introduce the concept of self-care to kids by engaging in activities that promote well-being, such as reading a book, taking a walk, or engaging in a creative hobby.

Celebrate Achievements

Acknowledge and celebrate your child’s accomplishments, no matter how small. This fosters a sense of achievement and reinforces positive self-regard.

Teach Mindfulness

Mindfulness practises can help kids become more aware of their thoughts and feelings. Teach them simple breathing exercises or guided meditations to help them stay present.

Use Stories and Role Models

Share stories or anecdotes about people who have shown self-kindness in challenging situations. Highlight how these individuals overcame obstacles with compassion for themselves.

Creating a Supportive Environment

Open Communication

Encourage your child to talk about their thoughts and feelings openly. Create an environment where they feel safe discussing their experiences without fear of judgement.

Normalise Mistakes

Help children understand that making mistakes is a natural part of learning and growing. Emphasise that everyone makes errors and that they provide opportunities for growth.

Emphasise Effort

Praise your child’s effort rather than just the outcome. This promotes a growth mindset and teaches them that their value is not solely tied to their achievements.

The Lifelong Impact of Self-Kindness

Teaching kids how to practise self-kindness is a gift that keeps giving throughout their lives. By nurturing this skill during childhood, you provide them with a foundation of self-respect, emotional resilience, and a healthy approach to setbacks. As they grow into adolescents and adults, these lessons will guide them in making choices that prioritise their well-being, fostering healthy relationships, and embracing challenges with confidence.

Visit The Learning Experience – East Finchley To Learn More

Empowering kids to practise self-kindness is a profound investment in their emotional well-being. Just as they learn to extend compassion to others, they should learn to offer the same compassion to themselves. By modelling self-kindness, encouraging positive self-talk, and creating a supportive environment, parents and caregivers can equip children with a valuable life skill that enhances their self-esteem, resilience, and overall happiness. As these empowered hearts grow, they’ll carry the lessons of self-kindness with them, benefiting not only themselves but also the world around them. Check out The Learning ExperienceEast Finchley here and learn how they make teaching children to love themselves a priority.

The Learning Experience – East Finchley Day Nursery and Preschool
250 East End Rd
London N2 8AU

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