Being a good friend – Teaching life skills to your child

by Ila Asthana

Expert 01‘A friend in need is a friend indeed’. Well, this holds true all through your life, so teach your kids the importance of being a good friend, and here is why

Oh! That age old saying of Friendship. Those clichéd thoughts about friends. Huh! Yet, don’t you think it does, smear, regardless of the time and generations we live in? Yes! No matter how much we grow intellectually, we as Homo sapiens, certainly need the warmth of human relationships to survive.

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Friendships are an important part of an individual’s life, which contributes to the personality of an individual. Friendships need a lot of time and effort to be nurtured for life. It is imperative that parents sow the seeds of beautiful friendships `in children from their childhood. Making great friends for life is not everyone’s cup of tea. Some have it naturally, some don’t. So as a parent, try to explore the concept of friendship with your toddler at a very young age. If they feel left out, here are a few tips and common suggestions, so go on and teach this indispensable life skill to your child.

1. Traits of a friend:

It is vital that the child knows a true friend is trustworthy and someone whom you can count on. Tell them, loyalty is very important in a friendship to last for life. Friends are an amazing source of inspiration and positivity when you are sad. In turn, tell your child, he or she should also be a great friend by imbibing such a quality of a true friend.

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2. Books on friendship:

There are hundreds of children’s bedtime stories which script the beauty of friendships in a very subtle and serene fashion. Some of them are Friends: Making them and keeping them; The Feelings Book, and Stand Up For Yourself and Your Friends. Let your kids read these and take a learning from them. 

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3. Being empathetic:

Empathy is an emotion that mostly as children, no one teaches us. Introduce the kids to these emotions and feelings; help them understand themselves and their sentiments. This will enable them to connect with their friends and provide emotional comfort. This will make them stronger individuals and not seek abandonment.

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4. Sharing is caring:

As parents, it is very important that you help your child understand the importance of sharing and caring. Sharing, not just materialistic. But, sharing their happiness and sadness with their friends and make their path of learning life. This will also help them to express themselves without any apprehension or fear of judgment or rejection. In turn, they would be matured and strong to care for their friends as well.

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5. Lead by example:

All said and done, as parents, you need to show in action, the virtues of true friendships. Your child will always look up to you for inspiration. So always display good and positive friendships and give a conducive environment where friendship is encouraged. Showcase the social skills, which you want your child to imbibe. In short, be a role model to your child.

As I write this blog, I am blessed to say that, I have friendships with seeds sown some twenty years back and well-nourished with time and trust. The best takeaway from school life. Life skills like these, groomed at an early age will help the child make the best out his or her life.




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