“Resilience” is a quality that gives us the psychological strength to carry on when things are difficult. It’s what helps us to deal with change, loss and setbacks, and other inevitable challenges thrown at us through life.
As a parent or carer of children, we want to make sure they are equipped to make the right decisions whenever they’re feeling stressed, low, hurt, scared or lacking in confidence. That’s where resilience comes in. We can help to nurture this quality from a young age, giving them the confidence to make the right choices during difficult times to lead a full and positive life.
Let them make mistakes & learn from them
Mistakes are a part of life, so make sure your child isn’t scared to make them. Encourage them to try new things, even though they may not always work out as planned. You can also use this as a learning opportunity. Ask them what worked and what didn’t, and discuss what they would do differently if they tried the activity again.
On a similar note, try to resist the urge to do everything for them. In order to develop their problem-solving skills, children need to come up against some difficult tasks. Whether it’s tying their shoe laces or doing a puzzle, ask questions to help your child come up with their own solution.
This shows them that you believe in their ability to work things out, nurturing both their problem-solving skills and their confidence. Of course, make sure they know help is available when they do need it.
Explain their emotions to them
Labelling emotions lets kids make sense of whatever they’re experiencing. They might come up against frustration, anger or jealousy, and it’s important that they know that such feelings are normal and that they will pass.
Ask them to describe the way they feel and talk about what happened to make them feel that way.
Encourage healthy risk-taking
A healthy risk pushes a child outside his or her comfort zone, but only in an environment where they’ll come to minimal harm if they’re unsuccessful. This could include trying out a new sport or talking to a child they haven’t interacted with before.
Simply avoiding risks can promote the inner-belief that they are not capable. Children build character when they have a strong sense of self-worth and confidence, setting them up with the means to overcome challenges throughout life.
Spend one-on-one time together
One-on-time time is essential to build an emotional connection with your children, which helps them to develop coping skills and learn the value of caring relationships. This unconditional support helps children to feel empowered to work through tough situations, and seek help when they need it.
Let your little ones know you’re in this together, but that you trust them to make the right decisions on their own, too.
Teach the importance of looking on the bright side. Optimism and resilience are closely linked, so try to steer your child away from pessimistic thinking so they can naturally reframe their thoughts to consider the positive in every situation.
Good role models at home and at childcare play a huge part in building resilience during early childhood. At Kids’ Kampus, we nurture an environment that exposes children to new opportunities to socialise, discover and develop positive qualities. For more information, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or call (09) 630 1454.