Parenting Tips

Resilience: What makes children strong?

children strong

Those who have it are not immune to blows of fate – losses, failures, grief, or illness are part of life – but they can survive them without breaking. The magic word is self-efficacy. The feeling of having an influence and being able to make a difference is an internal protective factor . Those who can positively influence their own life can also get out of seemingly hopeless situations.

Resilience can be strengthened at an early age. Although there are theories that resilience is genetic, it is now accepted that genes and the environment come together. A lot can be achieved with this combination.

 

Things Parents and Educators Can Do to Build Resilience in Children

  1. Praise and encourage – especially when the child tries hard and does not give up when something is difficult for him. Even if it does not do what is expected of it, the attempt should also be commended.
  2. Fixed caregivers who instill confidence strengthen children for a lifetime. If this cannot be your own parents, other people also have a great influence: relatives, educators, trainers, neighbors or other encouragements. They have to be adults who are reliably there and treat the child according to their needs.
  3. Take part. When adults show genuine interest, children thrive. The big ones should therefore ask the little ones, again and again, to tell something about themselves and their feelings. What do you like to play? What are you reading? What do you like about your friends? How do you like certain things? With questions like this, children learn to express their emotions and later use them purposefully to help themselves.
  4. Criticism is allowed. But it should be worded correctly. This means that the focus is not on the deficiencies, but on the effort. Even if children do something wrong, they do not need to be verbally abused. If something is criticized, it is behavior and not the person.
  5. Time for tenderness. Hugging, cuddling, caressing the head – that’s good for every child. You can’t do it often enough and you don’t have to be afraid of it. If it should become too much, the child will let his parents feel it by withdrawing.
  6. You are unique and valuable. Fathers and mothers shouldn’t compare their children with others (“Look, your boyfriend can do this much better”). This offends and robs the little ones of their belief in themselves. A reliable “We love you – no matter what you do and how you are” makes you strong.
  7. Gain confidence. Children must not be packed too much in cotton wool. If parents want to spare them every misstep, important experience simply stay away. The child then never experiences that he can help himself.
  8. To be a role model. Even with adults, things don’t always go according to plan. When parents run away in a conflict and bury their heads in the sand, it’s no wonder the children do too. Mothers and fathers should be role models and show their offspring how to get up after defeat. For example, by remembering previous successes, thinking of something nice, or being comforted.
  9. To allow tears. “An Indian knows no pain”, “Don’t cry now”, “Make a happy face” – parents should refrain from saying such things. Because children also have to learn to allow negative feelings. Sadness, anger, being shocked – only those who know such feelings can deal with them.
  10. Transfer responsibility early on. Be it for the pet, for smaller siblings, or household chores – those who can take on responsibility and are successful at the same time usually enjoy challenges that make them happy and strong later on.
Resilience: What makes children strong?

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