Resiliency can be a game-changer for kids and can change the way they see disappointments and challenges completely.
By: Laura Lebovitz | LAMFT at Grow Counseling
Resiliency is often an overlooked trait, but when kids are resilient they can better cope, and even thrive, when life gets hard. Kids who are resilient can easily develop strengths, hone in on new skills, and successfully handle the challenges of life.
Do your kids have what they need to be successful? Like most parents, you want to see your kids get the grade, win the game, learn the skill, and feel proud of themselves. You often willingly make a lot of sacrifices: sleep, time with friends, and time away from work
so your kids have the opportunities to reach and maintain success in a lot of areas. You support them as they navigate school, extracurricular activities and friendships. You guide them through making tough choices and cheer them on as they make strides on their own. Regardless of how much support you give your kids, there will still be times when they face disappointments and hardships. But, is there a way to help your kids navigate challenges and disappointments and have more opportunities to feel successful?
Building a sense of character.
Kids need to learn a fundamental sense of right and wrong to set them up to make wise choices in the future. Resilient kids who have a strong sense of their own values are better able to stick to them when times get tough or when others question them. Think about what values you hold as true and universal. Model them for your children and find ways to speak about them in regular conversations.
Help your kids build competence and confidence.
Competence is the ability to know how to handle situations effectively and trust your judgment. Build your child’s competence by allowing them to try new skills at home in a loving and warm environment. Talk with them about how to solve issues with friends or siblings instead of giving advice right away. Allow them to try new activities or household chores. Help them learn from mistakes and explore how they could handle things in the future. Competence, over time, builds confidence and their ability to handle difficult situations in the future.
Kids will face stressful times and make mistakes. It’s just human nature! Help your kids learn how to move on from mistakes and stress by teaching them a variety of healthy stress-reduction skills. A wide repertoire of healthy, adaptive, coping strategies helps kids overcome challenges. Make time for play and unstructured fun! Talk to your kids about what makes them feel relaxed. Then help them find more ways for stress relief to be included as part of the regular routine.
While you can’t shelter your kids from all hurt, you can help them learn resiliency skills so they can successfully navigate any challenges life throws at them!
Laura Lebovitz is a licensed associate marriage and family therapist that works in the Suwanee area at GROW Counseling. She received her Masters of Family Therapy from Mercer University School of Medicine. She works with children, adolescents, young adults, and families dealing with a variety of concerns. She specializes in working with anxiety, autism, self-harm, life transitions like divorce, and building healthy relationships within families.