Go-To Phrases to Raise Happy Kids

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There were words and phrases my own mother used to say to me growing up. I literally had no idea what the words meant, especially when she was trying to get me to calm down or past on some wisdom to me. Now that I am older, I have learned exactly what those words and phrases mean now.

My misunderstanding of my mom’s own advice made me wonder how much my own kids understand my words of wisdom I try to tell them. Do they understand what I am talking about? Do they know what I am trying to ask of them?

Often children can misunderstand what older adults are trying to say. Thus, it’s important to use simple words and sentences that he or she can understand. Getting your child’s understanding will allow them to follow through with what you say as well.

Check out these phrases all moms should use to raise happy kids.

“How does this make you feel?”

There’s been a lot of talk lately about how parents might be showering their kids too much with praise. I’m definitely guilty of this! Instead of being over the top enthusiastic, ask your child “how does this make you feel?” when they do something praiseworthy. It will help encourage your child to get in touch with their feelings and what they find satisfying instead of the end result of completing a task.

“Let’s try and find something good in this.”

Parents, we have all been there when our children have a disappointing moment. A rainy day, a dropped Lego masterpiece, you name it. However, the key to helping your child manage their disappointments and not to rush in and rescue them from feeling bad is to help them by allowing them to be upset. It’s not easy listening to your child cry or be upset about their disappointment, but after he or she has had their piece you can go from there.

Sit down with your child and say, “Let’s try and find something good in this.” You might receive some pushback from your child, but it can be hard for your child to see the good in the situation. Maybe find some indoor activities they love to do on a rainy day or help them rebuild their next masterpiece. By doing this, your child can learn to adapt and manage their disappointments.

“I need to think about that.”

We can often jump to responding instantly to our children. However, we do not always have to have an answer immediately for our children. Sometimes the first thing we say to our mind can lead to regret and even frustration for both of you and your kid.

Telling your child, you need to think about it helps give you time to think but also helps your child learn that sometimes you will not always have the answers right away. This teaches them to learn to weigh the pros and cons about your answers. Your child will then become comfortable about making his or her own decisions instead of impulsive choices. This can help your child avoid ill-advised situations when they are teenagers and help make them successful adults.


Sometimes we need to slow down and take a breath. However, with a busy schedule with getting ready for the bus, sports practice, or appointments it can be easy to forget how to slow down. Using this saying can help you also take a step back and slow down.

Teaching your child to slow down and take a breath can help them handle stressful situations. It can reset the tone of a day already starting stressful for you or your child. One way for you to help your child learn this phrase is to be on eye level and take a few deep breaths with them. It can also help you feel more clearheaded and ready to handle the situation or stressful day.

“Would you like a do-over?”

When your child rushes to eat their food, share their toys, or whines about something, this is a good way for you to help gently remind your child how you expect them to behave. The phrase can help your child know that you are letting them know his or her behavior is not acceptable. It also avoids scolding or embarrassing your child too.

You may even use the phrase “Let’s have a do-over” to make the statement more nonnegotiable. It takes him or her out of the hot seat and puts you both together on the same team. Your child will then be more willing to work with you.

“What a great idea!”

Cheering for your child’s big and small ideas can help them feel confident and solve their own problems. Whether your toddler is figuring what to wear or your 7-year-old is deciding how to spend their afternoon, using this phrase will help them in whatever scenario they might be and that they have the ability to solve the problem no matter how big or small.

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