Kids and Consumerism: How not to mess up

Many kids today seem to turn into consumption monsters wanting more and more things. It is getting harder to explain to them that people and real-life experiences are more valuable than a new talking toy.

A tsunami of advertisements comes from television, Internet and other media channels. Since the very childhood, kids get the idea that having new videogames, gadgets, clothes, etc. will make them happy and satisfied with their life. And they grow up with a feeling that parents have to buy them all they want.

Parents often let it go and just buy whatever their precious kids desire. It is never too late to teach your kids to appreciate non-material stuff, though. Here are five methods to help you with that.

Show them that you can have fun not spending money

Play and have fun with your kids not wasting money as often as you can. Thus, you will show them that you don’t have to pay to have fun. Draw together, play board and other games, dance, etc. Prove them that having good time doesn’t necessarily involve money.

 Don’t praise their achievements with gifts

When your kids succeed in something, you can offer them new experiences and events instead of a new toy. Take then to a museum, a beach, an exhibition, organize a picnic in a new place, etc. It is always good for kids to feel that you are happy to spend time with them. Whey will be glad to see new things and will learn to appreciate communication with a family.

Keep them out of gadgets

Of course, it is almost impossible not to let your kids use smartphones, tablets and laptops at all, but you can at least limit this usage so that they don’t stare in their phones all day long. You can set certain hours for using devices, you can forbid certain online activities, you can use parental restrictions on android or iOS, etc. Just do not let your kids turn into screen-zombies.

Watch what you say

The main idea here is to follow the rules you teach your kids. If at the dinner table you complain about your neighbor having a new car and your colleague getting a new iPhone, no wonder your kids see expensive stuff as an indicator of happiness.

Talk about family values

If you want your kids to appreciate your family, you should teach them some values. Talk about important things. Ask your kids to name five values they think matter and tell them how to follow those values.

I your kids talk about generosity, teach them to share with those who have less. If they say about compassion, tell them they should always support their family and friends.

Understanding the importance of moral values and the ability to apply them in life can help your kids to understand that the things you don’t have to buy are actually the most important ones.  

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