Building the Confidence, Resilience Child with Grit
The term “strawberry generation” is one of the very common terms used to describe millennials. A friend of mine who is in HR always joke that interviewing the millennials they’ll have a different set of tricks to know them better – especially those where needed their parents to be there for their interview. I say they need, instead of their parents wants to follow, simply because, they’re grown up and if they didn’t want their parents to be there, they would have successfully ensure their parents stay home.
What can we do as parents to build a confident, resilience child with grit?
I always says that we are all born with zero knowledge. Me, you and the person next to you, we are all born with zero knowledge, however, we could all have very different attitudes. What set us all differently is also how we all react to a situation. Since we are all born with zero knowledge, lets discuss about the failure as a child, and the reaction from the parents.
Scenarios: A 3 year old child climbs up to the staircase in the playground.
Parent A: Standing at the side, supporting the child up.
Parent B: Cheering for the child to go up unsupported, but standing really close by.
Parent C: Told her child to be safe, and explain how they can be safe, give him a kiss and tell him that Mummy will be sitting by the bench looking at him.
While Parent A could be applaud for their attentiveness, however, are we raising our child to be confident and resilience?
If one needed to give word of encouragement to their kids, it can be easily done after the playground with telling him how proud she is that he is able to independently keeping himself safe, how he could improve and what she thinks he did amazingly.
Now our top 3 tips to grow a Confidence, Resilience child with Grit
1| Be a life coach not a control freak
Realised how teachers are actually coaches? They flourish and develop a kid to work independently, but they will never do things for them. One of the key traits that parents commonly do is that out of love, they do things for the kids. Sometimes a simple act of putting on toothpaste for a child, which yes, you could be doing it because you want to avoid the mess – but think about the gross motor skills they develop, the independence and allowing your child to take charge of their life. Be their coach, tell them their life options and how each options differ, and let them learn to decide what to do.
I know I was being judge a lot for allowing my child to eat themselves. I did baby led weaning for all my kids, but as soon as they start using fork and spoons, some cringe seeing how messy they are eating themselves. However, do you realised that be it 1 year old, 2 years old or even 5 years old – the first time they eat themselves, it will always be messy?? So, let your kids to be independent as early as possible.
2| As OCD as you are, perfect work is not a good work
Want to really get your hands on helping your child to colour inside the line? Or help you child with their homework? DON’T DO IT. Expose them to the real world that they will be judge on their work and the consequences of not doing their homework. Constant intervention to “improves” their work not only breaks their confidence that they’re work are not good enough, this will prevent him from learning it.
So instead of it, back to point one, take an empty paper, draw out something, and colour inside the line and make another similar drawings and colour outside the line. Ask him or her which looks nicer. Let them make the decision. Even if they think that the one colour outside the line is better. Be a coach, not a control freak.
3| Create sustainable challenges, and let them have a feel of achievement
Kids learn best by experiencing success – their achievement. However, always create sustainable challenges. If your child just learn how to hold pencil, don’t expect them to be able to write A to Z the next day. Having sustainable challenges and celebrating small achievement is where they develop their confidence. Time to time, allow them to fail. Failure is good for kids, as it builds resilience. Resilience comes not from failing itself, but from the experience of learning that you can pick yourself up, try again and again, and finally succeed. Always remember to coach them. Let them put on their thinking skills what went wrong, what are the different options they can do to achieve success and let them make their own decision. Knowing that the parents would be there to support them, is all they need.