First, I want to say a heartfelt thanks to Ruchi and Dipika for organizing this amazing “Speak easy blogging challenge”. Though I got little late in joining the challenge but “Der aaye durust aye..”, and finally, I had joined this awesome ride with great enthusiasm and positivity.
With recent pandemic situation, stress level is so high among families and we all are looking for ways to keep our mood positive and up lifted. With this blogging challenge, 29 amazing bloggers has come forward and sharing their unique perspective about cultivating “Happiness”.
I had a great reader experience while reading different posts from the series, and also, I had learnt a lot too. From learning the science of happiness to debunking myths around happiness , I had read so many wonderful articles. it was all and all an amazing experience of sharing wisdom, knowledge and cultivating happiness in our day to day lives.
Now, it is my turn to share my contribution to this noble motive.
I am sure you all would be agree that being a parent, we always feel ourselves responsible for nurturing our kids with love and care. instilling good values and teach them emotional intelligence are one of the most important parenting aspects that helps in raising resilient and happy kids.
So, in this post, I am sharing some important aspects of raising happy and emotionally intelligent kids. For making this journey easier and exciting, I am also sharing some creative and intellectual activities for kids that will help them to learn the “Art of happiness”. Read the post to know more!
Childhood and happiness
Childhood is a fundamental stage of life. Recent scientifc reaserch suggests that the impression of having a happy childhood is associated with an enhanced self-esteem, good metal health and an overall healthy behavior.
Though genetics also play a big role in determining child’s overall level of happiness, but external factors also contribute majorly. Family environment, child care settings, community and neighborhood, all are important determinants of happiness and impact your child’s emotional well-being and over-all development.
Luckily, we parents can help children in creating a strong foundation of good emotional and mental health, by teaching them emotional intelligence skills and enrich them with powerful resources that will be needed for happy adulthood.
After learning all these amazing facts, I got really inspired and decided to celebrate a “Happiness week” at my home. I had discussed with my girls about this celebration and explain them importance of doing it.
They got so excited and we had started our planning for celebrating “Happiness week” at home with set of some amazing activities.
Here I am sharing those activities that we had done as a family. Hoping you will like it.
6 amazing activities for boosting happiness in kids
Make a happiness collage
I remember, “Creating collage” is one of the most favorite creative activity of my girls. And we had created so many beautiful collages of different theme (food, art), when they were little. Collecting pictures and sticking them on cardboard and then decorate this board, is an amazing process that most kids enjoyed.
This time, when I had discussed with them about the idea of “Creating happiness college”, they both had given an amazing suggestion. They had said that instead of making old fashioned collage (as per their thoughts, it is for little kids, and now, they are big girls). they want to create a digital “Happiness collage”. I was really impressed with their suggestion and we had decided to make “Happiness collage” digitally.
Here, I am sharing both ways (physical and digital) for creating a happiness college.
Happiness college by using old pictures
- Pictures of different enjoyable activities (as per your choice) from old magazines or newspaper
- Cardboard or other base material
- Glue, and other decorating material
- First talk to your child and asked him/ her to make a list of things that make them happy.
- Then find out the pictures of those listed things or activities
- Cut out the pictures and stick them on cardboard in an attractive and creative manner.
- Decorate the board with other available at home supplies.
- Your beautiful “Happiness collage” is ready to display.
Create a “Happiness collage” with digital method
This one is really a simple and modern method to create a happiness collage in minutes.
- First use any good photo editing app like be funky or our own Canva. Explain your child the way and method “how to use it properly?”.
- Next ask them to make a list of things or activities that makes them happy.
- Collect the pictures of selected activity or things from different reliable web sources or use your own pictures.
- Edit them by using Canva and another photo editing app.
- Your attractive photo collage is ready in 10 minutes.
My girls already know how to use these apps, so it was an easy and interesting activity for them. This is the college that they made.
Make a gratitude jar
This one is another interesting activity to boosting happiness in kids. We had done this activity few years ago, and girls just loved it. This week, when we are celebrating “happiness week”, I had decided to re-create this once again.
Do you know, happiness and gratitude have an amazing association? Research suggested, that practicing gratitude helps in boosting our happiness and also improve our all mental health too. People who maintain an attitude of gratitude in their routine life have better capability to deal with day to day stress.
“Gratitude jar” is an easy and interesting activity that appeal all age of kids. In fact, you can do it as a family too. It is originally a Chinese tradition. Chinese people celebrate their new year with this activity. They put the slips of things, which they grateful for whole year in a jar and then read it new year eve.
Here is method to do it at home.
- A jar or box
- Paper slip
- Decorative material as per your choice
- First talk about impotence of gratitude with your kids. Tell them why practicing gratitude is so important and then asked them to write down things (which they grateful for).
- Next take a jar and decorate them as per your style with available at home decorating material, then, Put the slips on this jar.
- Try to make this activity as a daily or weekly ritual. You can place the jar on dinning place for easy remembering. All family member can do this regularly.
This simple activity will surly boost your mood and will keep you positive even during challenging situations.
Practice gratitude journaling
I am sure you all had already heard about amazing benefits of practicing journaling.
Journaling helps in
- Counting your blessings
- Keep reminding you how beautiful life is
- Relive day to day stress and sleep quality
- Improve your problem-solving skills
- Helps in improving critical thinking skills
Honestly, this one is my long due activity that I want to start for myself and for girls too. Somehow, with busy schedule, I would not be able to start it. But this week, there is no more excuse. This blogging challenge has made me motivated and we all three d started writing our gratitude journal.
First, I had explained girls about importance, and method of writing a gratitude journal and they got excited to do it regularly.
We are keeping this activity as a part of bed time routine and having a better sleep and good mood with this activity.
Share beautiful memories
Memories are sweetest treasure of life that enrich our life and filled our heart with so much warmth and joy. During routine hectic life schedule, we did not get that much time and opportunity to recall those beautiful moments.
Scheduling or planning family time is best way to re-create and recalled those beautiful moments again. This week, we had done that, we three had shared one of our beautiful memory from past. While talking about that time, we all had felt so good and positive. And spend some quality together too.
I will highly be recommended you to do that at your home, I am sure like us you will also have a good time.
Express and manage your feelings positively
Learning to express and manage your feelings is one of the most important skill that kids need to learn at young age. Scientific research suggested that keeping our bad feeling hidden inside can jumble up our thoughts and can affect our mental and emotional health negatively. It is very important to learn the creative ways (like talking to our dear ones, or writing down your feelings) to express our feelings and manage our emotions positively.
Most of the people believe that express your feelings or emotions makes you a weaker person. But no way, it makes you a stronger and happier person.
There are three main steps of teaching emotional intelligence to your kids.
- Ask them to identify their different emotions and feeling. (you can do this step by asking them narrate some incidence for day to day life)
- Second tell them to name their different feelings. (if you are doing this activity with little kids, then help them with this step. You can use emojis or creative placard for making this step fun and interesting)
- Third tell them it is ok to have different kinds of feeling but you cannot do inappropriate behavior while having some strong negative emotions ( for example it is ok feel angry or upset, when something wrong happen but it is not ok to hit someone, when you feel angry or upset)
- Last but not the least explain them all possible creative ways to manage their emotions and feeling positively.
At my home, I had talked with my girls about emotional intelligence and asked them to make a slide show on a theme “Emotional intelligence”. Now, they are so excited for this new project and I am glad that they had learnt an essential life skill with this interactive session.
It may seem that mediation is a spiritual activity and kids may find it boring. But believe me, it is not like that. Once kids learn the way and importance of practicing meditation, they will enjoy too. Teach and practice mediation is another great activity that will not only boost your inner peace but will help in sleep better and reducing stress.
Boho beautiful is my personal favorite YouTube channel and I am practicing meditation with this help since more than 1 year. Since this summer, I had taught girls too and we all three are practicing meditation as a part of night time ritual. Girls are loving it and having a good night seep too.
Some more suggestions of “happiness theme activities”
Apart from these here are some more options for making this celebration more awesome.
- Watch a funny movie or tv series together
- Organize a home party with “Happiness theme”
- Play scavenger hunt (with happiness theme)
- Decorate your study or work place with our favorite things
- Write a gratitude letter to your dear ones (grandparents, friends) as a surprise
- Make a gratitude tree or gratitude flower
- Cook or bake something together
- Learn a new skill together
Last but not the least
Try to make this “happiness activities” part of your everyday life. During routine hectic life, we all had a long list of to-dos for different aspects of life, and forget the most important thing of life “To spend time with our family and cherish the small moments of togetherness”.