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There are a lot of important values and traits that are extremely beneficial to your child and their overall happiness and success. Of course, some traits and values stand above the rest, and one of those that seem to shine brighter than most is resilience.

Resilience is defined by the Oxford dictionary as follows,

1. the capacity to withstand or to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.
“the remarkable resilience of so many institutions”
2. the ability of a substance or object to spring back into shape; elasticity.
“nylon is excellent in wearability and resilience”

So, it makes sense why parents would want to encourage the development of this trait within their children. One day, your child will endure difficult circumstances and when they do, it is our job as parents to instill in them the strength they will need to overcome. Below, I will discuss 9 ways to ensure you raise resilient kids who never give up.

1. Be intentional.

There are two ways to approach raising your children: you can take it day by day, moment by moment, never really understanding where you are going or what you are aiming for, and letting life take charge of your parenting. Or, you can take the other approach which is more intentional. What I mean, is that if you want to give your kids the best chance possible, it’s important to know what you want to do as a parent to raise the best children and happiest children you can.

2. Encourage your children to recognize and label how they feel.

It’s important in a myriad of ways for your child to have emotional management skills. One of the most important tasks we have for preparing our kids for life is helping them develop emotional intelligence. This means removing invalidating responses and instead, helping your kids to recognize their emotions, and showing them how to cope.

3. Not accommodating their every need or wish.

It might be tempting to never allow your child to want anything. I see this a lot on social media, where kids who had neglectful parents choose to go to the extreme in the opposite direction. Sadly, this does not help your kids to develop resilience. Instead, it breeds entitlement.

4. Avoid removing all of the obstacles for your kids.

Additionally, you may believe it is your job as a parent to remove every obstacle you foresee. However, when you begin to do this all of the time, what happens is that your children never get a chance to develop the capacity to learn how to overcome them for themselves. In turn, you are robbing them of developing resilience.

5. Teach them to problem-solve.

All children should be taught how to solve their problems. For example, let’s say that your child is extremely shy and so they are nervous about presenting their science project. A more anxious parent would try to help their child find a way to avoid it altogether, while a parent who is working on problem-solving with their kids will sit down and help them figure a way through.

6. Let them make mistakes.

Sometimes, your kids are going to make mistakes. You see, natural consequences (mild ones, we aren’t talking real danger which you should most certainly protect your kids from) can be very beneficial in helping your child to learn and grow.

7. Praise effort, not talent.

Kids learn a lot from praise and when you praise them in the right way and for the right things, it can be extremely beneficial to them. What I mean, is that if your child studies for their math exam, and spends days making notes and making sure they work to pass it and then they pass it- you should be praising them for how much they worked for that. Not how talented they are at math.

8. Teach them how to ask for help.

Humans are social creatures by nature, but a lot of people either never learn how to ask for help or unlearn it through difficult circumstances. Asking for help sometimes is necessary though and knowing how to ask can make all the difference in the world.

9. Help your child to develop coping strategies.

When difficult emotions and situations arise, you should be working with your child to find ways to cope. For example, if your child is struggling with their temper, it may be helpful to show them or breathing exercises, to show them how to distract themselves, or to take them on a walk. Explain how these things will help them as they get older and consistently work with them to better understand their emotions and triggers.