Since children are born, they are demanding: they ask to eat, they ask for attention, that their diaper be changed ... And as they grow older, other requests are added to the demand given their real needs.
The behavior of wanting to acquire things can become an obsession and occurs in most children from the age of 2 years. But what are the causes? Why does such a materialistic child become?
Being a materialist is an attitude that implies believe that consumption and possessions are the primary goal of life, bring happiness and grant a status of social acceptance. Why is this happening to them ?:
- To compare with others. One of the reasons this happens in children is because they start to socialize and meet with their peers. They are compared to each other.
- By advertising. Another is that they are more vulnerable to advertising. In fact, there are studies that conclude that advertising seems to teach children that possessions are a way to increase happiness and success, where the most dissatisfied or less happy children are more vulnerable to its effects.
- They seek social acceptance. Feeling of vulnerability, low self-esteem or inattention are factors that make children more prone to materialism. For these children, reaching for the objects that others have or see in advertising means social acceptance, it gives them an identity and they achieve that happiness that they cannot find in other ways.
We must bear in mind that the environment in which the child lives influences and determines their behavior. Therefore, we can say that if parents are materialistic, materialistic children will be raised. Let's not forget that parents act as role models and examples. But, the children can become materialistic even if their parents are not due to the prevailing social values that influence them and exert great social pressure from an early age.
We give you some tips to try to avoid this situation:
1. That parents limit the use of TV, rather than ban it. Select content that provides knowledge or is entertaining, but avoiding that they are 'glued' to it at all times.
2. Sit as a family to watch TV. Chat about what you see. Teach them to be more critical of what they see. Make them smart consumers
3. The practice of sports. For children to socialize in environments of cooperation and healthy competition
4. Have quality family time. Plan different activities to participate with them in their favorite hobbies, avoiding the situation of just being together.
5. Explain the difference between wanting and needing.
6. Don't bribe him to behave. If you say 'if you behave well I will buy you an ice cream' we will only get him to get used to gifts and become materialistic.
In today's society it is deeply ingrained the use of rewards and punishments in the education of children. This way of educating comes from behavioral theory whose techniques are effective when used under specific conditions. Where through these rewards and punishments the adult is manipulating the child's behavior and where the value is placed on the result.
Instead, exercising this type of rewards we will that the child looks at extrinsic motivation, which is that which originates outside the individual, guiding the child to be materialistic and focusing more on the result or what he gains than on the process.
In conclusion, we can affirm that with this type of education of rewards and punishments, parents and children are trapped in the belief that it is through consumption that satisfaction is achieved.
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