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I started this trend for Valentines on Feb.1st -14th knowing that I needed to encourage my children more. But when the negative seems to outweigh the positive, what do you do??

Here’s what happened when I started focusing on the positive.

I have been reading a book by Amy McCready called “If I Have to Tell You One More Time” and she talks about encouragement vs. praise. I was blown away by the incredible evidence that praise causes kids to be people-pleasers!

I am somewhat of a people-pleaser myself, raised and praised my entire life by family for excelling in sports. So I praise my kids a lot. I thought Inwas doing something good.


I was able to see that by saying things like “I am proud of you” made my son want to try to please me more but he wasn’t able to feel proud of himself by himself. He needed me to justify what he should be proud of doing.

This was not what I wanted. So I started using some of these words of these encouragement. And what a difference it made!

The author, Amy goes on the make this clear by saying, “The main thing to remember while formulating phrases of encouragement is...

Words of praise focus on the DOER, while words of encouragement focus on the EFFORT and the DEED itself.”

And instead of “You’re the smartest kid I know,” you can say, “You are capable of anything you put your mind to and work hard for!”

Encouragement inspires kids to find their inner courage, gives them an unconditional sense of belonging and significance for who they are (not for what they do), and helps them develop the skills to realize their full potential.

♥️ 💙💚💛🧡❤️ So I used these phrases inside of the hearts that I placed on their doors for 9 days. I also started practicing these phrases more and more during our day-to-day interactions.

My so completely all of his work early a few days ago and he said, I feel so proud of myself!” I smiled.

I thanked him for taking out the trash without being asked and told how much it helps and he now remembers to do it without being asked.

When he asks me for an option about how he’s doing, I redirect the question to him and say, “What do you think about how you did?”

He says he doesn’t like when I make him think about it and he just wants me to tell him but he’s learning to do the work.

I am so proud of him. I tell you this. But I tell him that I love being with him when we can work together as a team like this. He smiles and hugs me tighter. 💕

I can’t wait to hear how these love messages of encouragement change your life. Please share your experience in the comments and let me know if this info helps.

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