Life is rough. That’s just a fact. Though many parents wish to protect their children from…everything, the fact is that everyone will face rough patches. The best thing a parent can do for their child is to help them build the resilience needed to weather those rough patches.
What is resilience and how can you help your child build it? Let’s find out!
What Is Resilience?
Resilience has to do with how you react to a situation. For example, say you are at a playground, watching kids run around and play. Two little boys run into each and both kids are a little banged up (let’s assume equally). One sits down and starts wailing, while the other jumps up, shakes it off, and keeps playing.
The second boy is more resilient than the first. Faced with the same negative situation, he was able to overcome it quickly and go back to playing.
Thus, resilience is important for overcoming the challenges of life. Resilient children will become resilient adults who will stress less with life events and be better at coming up with creative solutions.
How Does a Child Develop Resilience?
Obviously, you want your child to become more resilient, but how do you nurture this quality? Where does resilience come from?
Some people are born more resilient than others so your child’s personality will have an effect. However, the environment in which they grow up can also have a substantial effect.
Tips for Helping Children Build Resilience
You can’t control your child’s personality but you can control aspects of their environment. Creating the right environment will help them develop resilience.
1. Stable Relationship
The most important factor for building resilience in children is a stable relationship with at least one adult. Life can throw all sorts of things at a child, but if they have at least one parent or caregiver to cling to, they will bounce back easier.
Encourage your child to be independent. Even simple things like putting on their own shoes or choosing their own clothes greatly affect a child’s mental health for the better.
3. Faith or Cultural Traditions
Being a part of something bigger than ourselves also helps to foster resilience. Kids that grow up as part of a church or community with strong cultural traditions tend to be more resilient.
4. Develop Problem-Solving Skills
You can start the process when your child is a baby. Toymakers build lots of games and toys designed to force kids to come up with solutions to problems.
For example, a simple one is a box with different shapes cut out. The child has to choose which one will fit through which hole from blocks made in the same shapes.
It seems really simple to us but makes a world of difference in developing brains.
Watch Your Child Grow Happy and Strong
Though your first instinct may be to protect your child from negative events, a little hardship in childhood is actually a good thing. Every little event they overcome now will help them overcome bigger events later on.