Seven Behaviors to Resist Right Now to Help Develop Your Child’s Resiliency
Facing challenges and obstacles is a part of life. And when our children face these, we, as caregivers, want to do all we can to protect them from failure. I think that it pains us as much, if not more, than our children at times.
But – when we do protect them, it robs them of a chance to develop their resiliency which they’ll need in life.
There are several common “resilience robbers” that we caregivers tend to do – all with the best intentions of course, for protecting them in the here and now. But, what these resilience robbers actually do is hinder them in the long run by not allowing them to develop any resiliency on their own.
Resist Fighting Your Child’s Battles for Them
There’s nothing wrong with going in to battle when your child struggles or is met with difficulty inside or outside school, but make sure this is the last resort, not the first option.
Zeal Alternative: Give your child the opportunity to develop their own resourcefulness.
Resist putting unrealistic or relentless pressure on your child to perform
Expectations about success and achievement are important. Too low and your child will too easily meet them. Too high and your child can give up. Too much and your child can experience anxiety.
Zeal Alternative: Keep your expectations in line with your childcare’s abilities and don’t put excessive pressure on them – but never underestimate their potential either.
Resist letting your child give in too easily
Resilient children link success with effort. They don’t give up when confronted with complex activities. They also don’t bail out of a commitment halfway through without sticking to their original promise to participate.
Zeal Alternative: Encourage your child to complete what they have started even if the results aren’t perfect. This includes sports and school.
Resist Giving Your Child Too Much Voice
It’s really easy to go overboard and allow children too much of a say in what happens to them. Children do not yet have the capacity or responsibility to deal with adult based decision making. This means that if given too much freedom, they may take the easy option to avoid hard or unpleasant situations.
Zeal Alternative: Have family meetings to discuss decisions with your children rather than just expecting them to adjust and cope.
Resist Rescuing Your Child From Challenging or Stressful Situations
There will be many times where your child will be faced with situations outside their comfort zone. These situations have the potential to shape your child and galvanize them for future decisions or challenges. If you allow your children to figure things out for themselves initially, they usually cope as you have shown your confidence in them.
Zeal Alternative: Coach your children through overcoming their challenges by highlighting the lesson learned that enables them to grow and improve.
Resist Making Your Child’s Problem, Your Problem
Sometimes parents take too much responsibility for issues that are really up to children to work out or decide. Allow your child to make choices within reason and feel the consequence for themselves if a poor one is made.
Zeal Alternative: Make their problem, their problem by not interfering. Use coaching AFTER the problem is figured out to move forward positively.
Resist Neglecting To Develop Independence
Don’t wait until your child is a teenager to develop the skills of independent living. Start early and promote a broad skillset so that they can look after themselves if you are not around. (And if your child is now a teen and you haven’t taught them skills for independent living, it’s not too late to start right now.)
Zeal Alternative: Don’t routinely do for kids what they can do for themselves. Nurture a leadership mindset where they feel equipped to make good choices but are also accepting that this will not always be perfect.
Written by Carol Chapman – Coach Carol C Kids Life Studio
Richmond, Texas, USA