While many of us often reminisce on our childhood days as carefree, youth alone offers no protection against the obstacles that can come entailed with life itself. Our children are just as susceptible to stress and adversity as we are, albeit the nature of their difficulties may vary from ours.
Adapting to ever-changing social norms and ever-rising educational demands are but some facets that pervade a child’s growth and development, in a complex world filled with much uncertainty. The ability to thrive in spite of such challenges arises from resilience, making it an important virtue to cultivate in our children of today.
On top of being essential to a child’s holistic development, building resilience in our children allows them to develop effective buffers against difficult life experiences and equips them with the capacity to manage feelings of stress, anxiety, and uncertainty. Resilient children can quickly and confidently recover from setbacks and disappointments, while continually pushing their own boundaries and taking healthy risks outside their comfort zones.
However, few children are born naturally resilient, and even those that are can further build on this virtue for greater success in life. And as with all things related to children, parents can play a significant role in helping them build up their resilience. Here are four ways of building resilience in your child:
1. Set a Good Example at Home
Of course, the very best way parents can help build resilience in their children is to set a good example at home. This includes remaining calm and flexible when managing the challenges life throws at us, no matter how difficult, and being vocal about your thought process when dealing with difficulties. In other words, being resilient yourself and explicitly expressing how you use positive emotions to deal with problems can go a long way in showing your child that stress is normal and can be handled healthily and productively.
Examples include going for a jog when you need to relax before coming back to tackle the issue at hand, or voicing out — when relevant — of mistakes you made and how you can learn from the mistake and address the consequences moving forward.
2. Boost Confidence and Encourage Positivity
Rejection and punishment are strongly associated with lower levels of resilience in children. Make sure you adopt parenting methods that boost your child’s confidence levels and encourage positive thinking, such that you reinforce your child’s self-esteem to complete given tasks and achieve set goals despite the obstacles that may come their way.
Instead of picking on mistakes and reprimanding your child, acknowledge each positive choice or action your child displays. This could be simple things such as bringing a jacket to the cinema in case they get cold, or taking the initiative to complete their homework on time. When building resilience in your children, it is also crucial to always focus on using positive language and avoid negative words. For example, instead of telling your child to not be lazy and finish up their chores, tell them that it is time to be a little more hardworking and that you know they can do a perfect job in no time if they put their heart into it.
3. Use Real-Life Problems as Practical Practice
Practice makes perfect. Whenever you find your child struggling, make use of it as an opportunity for building resilience by facilitating flexible thinking and guiding them on problem-solving. This not only motivates your child to work towards actively solving their problems rather than solely getting frustrated, but also establishes a library of readily usable solutions your child can tap into for future challenges that come their way.
The confidence gained from having worked through multiple hurdles and predicaments can also give children the self-assurance that they can handle themselves when needed, further adding on to the aforementioned method of building resilience in children via boosting confidence and encouraging positivity.
4. Enrol Them in Performing Arts Classes
It has been proven that participation in performing arts such as through speech and drama classes can have a significant impact on a child’s self-confidence, self-esteem, relationship-building skills, and sense of belonging — qualities intricately linked to mental well-being and resilience in children. The nature of the performing arts helps build resilience in children through:
- Creating well-rounded, confident individuals through providing a productive platform for children to showcase their talents and be part of a larger community that they are highly involved in.
- Teaching children how to cope with constructive criticism and providing a safe environment for them to give, receive, and apply feedback and engage in continuous self-improvement.
- Cultivating discipline and determination through hours and hours of practice and dedication to developing new skills and abilities to improve their craft, never giving up along the way.
- Providing children with the space to freely be themselves with no fear of being wrong — due to the subjective nature of the arts — where they can develop their ability to overcome anxiety and bolster bravery.
- Incorporating physical activity and fitness into a child’s routine to alleviate pent up emotions and demonstrate feelings of negativity through performance in non-critical environments.
Build Resilience in Your Child with MindChamps Académie of Stars
As the premier performing arts school in Singapore, MindChamps Académie of Stars offers numerous programmes that can help build resilience in children and more.
From speech and drama classes to musical theatre school to vocal lessons for kids, each and every of our specialised and signature programmes at our performing arts school is designed to not only champion your child’s burgeoning talent, but the holistic development of their character.
Get in touch with us to find out more, or check out our school holiday activities and workshops at MindChamps Académie of Stars performing arts school in Singapore.