Modeling Happiness: Part of the Recipe for Raising Happy, Healthy Children

Hello Mommies and Daddies! Welcome back to Happy, Healthy Children with Pamela Cunningham, M.D. Thanks for reading! 

I wanted to talk to you today about the importance of modeling happiness and joy for your children. Did you know that multiple medical studies have proven a relationship between positive attitudes, happiness, good health and longevity? It has been shown time and again: patients who are happier and have positive outlooks are overall healthier and recover from illness better than patients with negative mindsets. So how does this relate to our goal of raising happy, healthy children?

As parents, we know that our children imitate everything we do. When we do good things, it is a blessing to have our children imitate our behavior. But, when we slip up and display poor behavior, having our children mirror it is regrettable.

If we, as parents, model happiness and joy for our children, they will most likely assume these positive emotional traits in their lives. And they can use these positive emotions not only to have happy, joyful lives themselves, but also to have improved health outcomes. 

Unfortunately, during this most special time of year, many of us may not feel particularly happy. Between the Covid lockdowns, high unemployment levels, financial uncertainties and all the other things going on in our world, sometimes it is hard to experience happiness and joy.

Most of us, when we were growing up, did not have to deal with all of the craziness in today’s world.  Sure there were better times and worse times. But overall, our world felt much more stable. 

Unfortunately for our children, they are growing up in a time of great uncertainty, high levels of depression and decreased levels of joy.  But they deserve to experience the same joy that we had when we were children, especially during the holiday season.

Even if you’re not feeling as happy, joyful and celebratory as in years past, try to focus on something that does make you feel joyful. Take a moment to listen to the laughter of your children and feel joy. Or think about taking a nice, warm bath after your children’s bedtime and find joy in that. Or simply find joy in the tradition and unique nature of the holiday season. Whatever it is that makes you feel happy, please focus on it so that your children can model these positive emotions, thus helping them be happy and healthy.

Thank you again for reading with me today! Please enter your email address below to subscribe to my blog which will allow my new postings to come directly to your inbox.  Also please share my Facebook page, YouTube videos and Instagram account with your friends and family so they too can raise happy, healthy children!

God bless and have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Pamela Cunningham, M.D.

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