Like adults, kids experience stress. From bullying to divorce to changes in routine, all children need to be capable of working through challenges. Resilience is the ability to bounce back from stress, adversity, or even failure. It’s a skill that’s developed, and you can help your kids build resilience in the face of obstacles with these tips:
Spend time with your kids
Spend quality time with your kids. When children feel loved and supported, they develop emotional strength. Have daily “connect time” for an activity of your child’s choosing. Be sure to follow through and complete the activity without any distractions. Don’t be afraid to laugh and be silly!
Talk about Feelings
Talk about feeling so your kids learn to share their worries with people they trust. No matter how you feel, it’s healthy to put your feelings into words. It helps us feel better when we’re sad or scared and also helps us use self-control when we feel upset. You don’t have to talk about every feeling you have, but noticing your feelings and saying how you feel and why is good practice. The more you do it, the easier it gets, and you’ll be ready when you have difficult feelings you need to talk over.
Let kids work out things themselves
All children are capable of working through challenges and coping with stress. Instead of rushing to solve problems, give kids time to work things out for themselves. If your child can’t find a solution to a problem, use gentle questioning to guide them towards it.
Ensure your kids are eating well, exercising, and getting enough sleep. Also, children often model their parents’ behavior, so make sure you’re taking care of yourself, too.
Don’t be Afraid of Failure
When children experience failure or disappointment, praise their effort and encourage them to try again. Also, acknowledge your own mistakes to teach kids that mistakes are essential to growth and learning.
Mistakes and failure build resiliency, and resilient kids are more likely to take healthy risks because they don’t fear falling short of expectations. They are curious, brave, and trust their instincts. This helps them reach their long-term goals and solve problems independently. Watch Edgewood CEO Adam Russo’s TEDx talk for more reasons why failure and resiliency helps kids grow:
If you need parenting help or are concerned that your child is struggling with ongoing stress, contact Edgewood. Our therapists are skilled at everything from teaching creative parenting strategies to getting your child to open up. Sessions are available in-person and virtually, so reach out below if you need support.