As we model in building peaceful and loving relationships, our children will feel more secure and loved. Positive language, positive listening, and empathy help maintain a peaceful and happy home environment in times of stress.

1. We are role models of children

• The way we talk and behave in front of others also greatly affect our children’s behavior!

• Try to be kind with everyone in the family, adults and children

• Negative use of language by adults at home can have a negative impact on children •

The more we display patterns of loving, peaceful relationships with our children, the more safe and loved children will feel.

2. Use positive language. This really works!

• Tell the person what you want them to do instead of saying what you don’t want them to do: Instead of “Don’t shout”, try: “Please speak softly”

• Compliments make others feel valued and feel good about themselves. Simple words like “Thanks for cleaning dinner”, or “thank you for taking care of the baby” can make a big difference.

3. Do good deeds together as a family

• Each day, a family member takes turns choosing an activity for the whole family

• Find ways to spend quality time with your spouse and other family adults!

4. Be an active listener and empathy

• Listen to the other person while you talk. • Be open and let the other person know you are listening to what they have to say

• Be able to summarize what you heard before answering: “What you just said is …”

5. Share responsibility

• Taking care of children and other family members is hard work, but shared responsibility becomes much easier.

• Try to share housework, childcare and other duties fairly among family members.

• Create a schedule for “work” and “rest” time with other adults in the family

• You can ask for help when you feel tired or stressed so you can rest

6. Feeling stressed or angry?

• Take a 10-second pause. Breathe in and out five times slowly. Then try to answer in a more calm manner. Millions of parents said this was EXTREMELY helpful

• Pause when you feel an argument is about to happen and go to another room or go outside if possible

• See more tips on the “When you get angry” and “Calm and Manage stress” pages.

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