Three Ways to Teach Your Kids Empathy

September 7, 2016

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A new study from the University of Michigan found college freshmen are 40% less empathetic than 30 years ago . . . they have a harder time seeing things from other people’s perspective, and they’re not as considerate.

It’s partly because they’re online so much, and not face-to-face.  So here are three proven ways to teach kids to be empathetic.  Especially when they’re young . . .

 1.  Come up with a family mantra.  Like, “Our family helps people, we don’t hurt them.”  It might sound dumb, but a psychologist recently had parents try it.  And kids almost always remembered what their family mantra was.

 2.  Make sure they see YOU living by the same rules.  And if you ever have to apologize to THEM for something, make sure you mean it . . . explain why you’re sorry . . . and teach them to do the same thing.

 3.  Put a list on the fridge of nice things they can do each day.  Like giving someone a compliment, or holding a door for them.  Then have them try to do two a day.

Just try not to reward them for it with money or anything tangible.  The goal is to help them grow up to be a well-rounded person, not to make them think they’ll GET something out of being nice to people.