develop patience in kids

How to develop Patience & Delay Gratification in Kids?

The energy levels are highest in our early years of life, hence the education of our early years is considered as primary as things learned in the first 10-15 years of life are what establish the base of our lives. With the abundance of energy comes to the impatience to pour it all out in quick successions. Thus, preaching the virtue of patience to kids can be quite trying especially in today’s tech-savvy world. Kids are impressionable beings, they enact what they see in their surroundings, so it’s first important to practice patience ourselves to make a better example for our kids.

patience and self control

Patience and self-control are interdependent to each other. The lack of forbearance and patience is what ignites the emotions of anger and irritation in oneself. Kids are proven to have a short span of attention, which is what propels impatience, thus making it one of the hardest lessons to teach young kids.

Studies show numerous benefits of early teachings of patience in kids, like better focus, improved test results, better health, balanced emotions and more. One of the approaches to teach patience in kids is practicing delayed gratification with them. Delayed gratification entails postponing certain privileges against the fulfillment of a given task. It sometimes needs little creativity to reinforce delayed gratification, but with trial and error, one can achieve the goal and teach their kids the virtues of patience and gratification.

Games are a great source of attracting and teaching kids of new ideas. We have curated some Yogic games that teach children the importance of sharing and not being greedy in a fun simple way.

Eight Chocolate Game:

The Eight chocolate game can be easily put together at home. The concept of this game was designed by Mr. Neriosang Desai and Mrs. Armaiti Desai, which was then revised on 10th March 2019 for Equal streets.

All you need to organize this game is an A4 size paper, chocolates and a marker. Start by creating an octagon as shown in the picture below. The octagon has eight inward folding flaps, with each flap having dots starting from one to eight dots.

eight chocolate game

The game is played between two players. Player A will ask for a number between one to ten. Player B has to fold the octagon in such a way that maximum dots appear on the top after folding. Each kid gets three chances, so after Player B has used all his chances, Player A gets the turn. Minimum one chocolate has to appear. As the folding continues it can increase up to 26 chocolates. This is where they learn not to be greedy and also to share. Also, playing this game teaches them the virtue of patience.

Eight chocolate game is a simple way to teach children about the Yogic concept of the Eightfold path or Ashtanga Yoga.

  1. One Dot- Yama (Restraints- Don’ts)
  2. Two Dots- Niyama (Rules- Dos)
  3. Three Dots- Asana (Postures)
  4. Four Dots- Pranayama (Regulation of Breath)
  5. Five Dots- Pratyahara (Withdrawal of the senses)
  6. Six Dost- Dharana (Concentration)
  7. Seven Dots- Dhyana (Meditation)
  8. Eight Dots- Samadhi (Complete Integration)


Parenting practices to observe with your kids:-

1. Attend to feelings/ Bhavas- Kids follow the actions of the adults around. Thus, set good examples especially when around kids. Help your kids with healthy strategy by showing them how to verbalize their frustrations and how to keep calm in moments of distress. Work by addressing and suggesting words to describe their feelings like- anger, mad, happy, nervous, quiet and such. Discourage throwing of toys and fists by showing them how being angry, they will primarily hurt themselves. The Yoga Asanas with correct Bhavas taught at the institute infuse patience and builds stamina in your kids.

observe your kids2. Cultivate Problem-solving skills- Role-playing is a great tool in cultivating problem-solving skills. Reverse the roles- Pretend you are not getting to play with your favorite toy? How will you overcome this situation? What can you do to feel better? Can you wait for your turn till your friend has finished playing with the toy? What else can you do about it?
Sometimes plans change, and how to cope when a situation doesn’t go their way is essential to learn. Encourage them to find solutions for a problem instead of providing the solution, and let them participate in implementing the solutions.

problem solving skills

3. Encourage Impulse Control- The Yoga Institute has Yogic games like Faith game, Red Light- Green Light and Follow the Leader which teaches to crumb random impulses and knee-jerk reactions as kids have to watch patiently and wait for their turn in being a leader.

4. Teach & Help them to open Saving Account- When kids demand an expensive toy that their friend has like a Remote control car, suggest them to pay for it by saving money. A savings account, where they can put in their allowance money, birthday money and such not only teaches them about delayed gratification but also helps them to set goals and encourages them to work towards it.

Parenting is a learning process and you might make mistakes on the path and so will your kid, but without being too hard on yourself experience the whole new journey of growth and you & your kid will just be fine!

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