One night this past week, my husband and I were putting Troy to bed. We both said the same thing as we left the happy and content 3 year old: his love tank was filled. I mean, he usually does go to bed happy, but he was just unusually happy that night and didn’t put up a fight to go to bed. We realized that we had spent considerable amount of time with him that day and that he was just feeling so loved and secure. It made me think about a few things this week and I want to share them with you. It is so easy for me to forget that my children really do have a love tank that needs to be filled. I read this from Gary Chapman, author of the book The Five Love Languages, and he quoted a psychiatrist named Dr. Ross Campbell. “Inside every child is an ‘emotional tank’ waiting to be filled with love. When a child really feels loved, he will develop normally, but when the love tank is empty, the child will misbehave. Much of the misbehavior of children is motivated by the cravings of an empty ‘love tank.'”
I admit that it’s easy to just to focus on doing my own thing instead of engaging with my children. However, I’ve noticed a pattern. When I do something unique and special for them or just spend some quality time with them, I can tell that their love tank is filled. They are happy and content. Now I’m not saying that we should constantly cater to our children, I’m just think that sometimes we need to give them an extra emotional boost.
(I promise he really is happy in this picture…he is “smiling”)
Anyway, I asked Troy what he loves to do with us and here’s what he said:
1. Go to Bass Pro Shop with Daddy
2. Bake cookies with Mommy
3. Playing Mario with one of us
4. Dance Parties
5. Going on a bike ride
I thought it was cute to hear in his words what makes him feel loved.
Here are some ideas on filling your child’s love tank! Of course I realize everyone is different and some activities are more meaningful to some kids than others, but here’s a list of 5 ideas to fill your child’s love tank.
1. Spend some quality one-on-one time with your child and take them on a fun date. This could be for ice cream or to a pet store to look at the animals.
2. Write them a sweet note and send it in the mail to them. They will be overjoyed to receive mail and hear encouraging words from their parent!
3. Bring home a special toy or treat for them unexpectedly.
4. Give them a back rub. It’s so cute how much Troy loves this. I love watching him fall asleep when I do this!
5. Make your child’s favorite dinner.
Do you have any ideas on filling your child’s love tank? I hope you’ll try this. If you do, please share with me!