[vc_row row_type=”3″ blox_image=”11529″ page_title=”page-title-x” blox_padding_top=”180″ blox_padding_bottom=”180″][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Resilience: All You Need to Know to Raise a Remarkable Child” font_container=”tag:h1|text_align:center|color:%23ffffff” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_column_text]You want the best for your child.

You want them to grow up to become happy and successful adults, but deep down- you’re never really sure if you’re doing the right thing.

So, you play the same game that everyone else is playing.

And you keep your fingers crossed that it will all turn out ok.

That they’ll work hard, get good grades, go to college, get a good job and have a nice life.

I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”you are playing the wrong game” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]Don’t worry, we were too.

That is until we read Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth.

Her research found that the most significant predictor of a successful and happy life for your child is not qualifications, IQ, or natural talent. Nor is it their looks or their luck. It’s not even the school you send them to or the connections they make.

Instead, it’s plain old grit, or as we like to call it: resilience.

You can forget the after school clubs, the extra tuition, the homework, the heavily scheduled diary, the CV boosting volunteer projects, the work internship… none of them are as valuable to your child as them being resilient.

It’s not that these things aren’t important, they are just not as important.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”so the question is” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]

How much work and effort are you putting in to helping your child be resilient?

If you are anything like us, you’ve probably never thought about it like this and so the answer will be “Not much!”.

We knew that resilience was important, we just didn’t realise how important.

That’s why we’ve spent the last 6 months researching how to teach our kids to be resilient.

So, what have we learned?

First of all, resilience is not a ‘you-either-have-it-or-you-don’t’ quality, the research is clear, it is something that you learn, therefore it can be taught. Although it’s not something that can be taught in the traditional sense, our kids learn it from their environment and through experience.

Secondly, if you want a resilient child then it’s your responsibility to help them develop it.

Your child is like a precious flower, if you start them off in nutrient-rich soil, place them in a greenhouse, feed them and water them daily, and get rid of the bugs, you stand a great chance of growing something beautiful, ready to thrive and flourish in the outside world.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”with great power comes great responsibility” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]As parents, we are lucky, we are uniquely positioned to be able to help our children:

by creating an environment within the home where resilience can be nurtured

by helping them to develop the characteristics and skills of a ‘resilient’ person

So where do you start?[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”how we are doing it” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]We’ve read books, watched videos and read countless articles.

We’ve borrowed ideas from the fields of science, psychology, business and sport- and we’ve taken the best of what we’ve learned and then we have experimented on our kids (sorry kids ).

What follows is what we did and are continuing to do day-by-day, it’s not perfect, we are constantly learning, tweaking, and making improvements… Rome wasn’t built in a day!

What we have seen, is our kids start to demonstrate their resilience, whether that be, going that extra mile with their homework, coming up with new ways they can improve their skills, or coming home and telling us how they were resilient at school today… all of which makes us very happy indeed.

Our aim is to give you a framework that you can use, that helps you to create the environment at home where your children can develop their resilience too. Please make your own tweaks and adjustments, find out what works for you and what doesn’t: personalise it for your family.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”before we begin…” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]We’ve packed a lot of information into this article, if you would like a pdf version emailed to you as well as access to ALL of the resources we have created to help you, just pop your email address in the box below for instant access.

As our research and experiments continue, we will update you with any new ideas we use to help develop resilience in our kids, so you can use them on yours.[/vc_column_text][vc_wp_text][thrive_leads id=’11242′][/vc_wp_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row equal_height=”yes” row_type=”2″ blox_cover=”false” align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”60″ blox_padding_bottom=”60″ row_color=”#58646d”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”step 1: help your kids to understand resilience” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space][vc_column_text]As Psychologist Nathaniel Branden said, ‘The first step towards change, is awareness. The second is acceptance.’ So, the first step for us was to make the kids aware of resilience, to have the concept of resilience come alive in their brain.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”the perfect way to teach and connect” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]If your kids are anything like ours, they love learning from videos and it doesn’t get much better than learning straight from the horse’s mouth, so we sat down together and watched the Angela Duckworth Ted talk.

We’d recommend that you do this too, it’s a great place to begin.

There is quite a bit to grasp in this short talk so, pause it regularly to make sure that the information is sinking in, this will also give your kids the chance to ask questions; lots of questions.

This really is a fantastic opportunity to bring resilience to life for them, through your own personal ‘resilience’ successes and failures…. (don’t forget the failures).

We know how tempting it is to present an image of ‘perfection’ to our kids, perfect Mum and perfect Dad- always in control. But, by doing so, we miss a valuable teaching opportunity and a really lovely way to connect, and it lets your kids know that you are a human, with challenges and struggles too.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”solid foundations” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]After watching the video, we started to prepare them for what was coming.

We told them that because this was an important part of their development, it was our responsibility to help them to learn how to become resilient.

As a result, we would be experimenting with a few things to help them learn this (experiment sounds less permanent than ‘change’ and a lot more fun).

Laying the foundations in this way has a number of other benefits:

once they understood the importance of what we were doing, we didn’t encounter too much resistance to the new things we tried.

our minds were now focused on resilience and so funnily enough, we noticed more of what you might call ‘teachable moments’, or real-life opportunities that arose that we could use to talk about resilience.

the kids now had a mental framework that they build on and use to make sense of subsequent events and situations, it helped the lessons to sink in.

Win-win-win![/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”5/12″][vc_raw_html]JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwc3JjJTNEJTIyaHR0cHMlM0ElMkYlMkZlbWJlZC50ZWQuY29tJTJGdGFsa3MlMkZhbmdlbGFfbGVlX2R1Y2t3b3J0aF9ncml0X3RoZV9wb3dlcl9vZl9wYXNzaW9uX2FuZF9wZXJzZXZlcmFuY2UlMjIlMjB3aWR0aCUzRCUyMjQ1MCUyMiUyMGhlaWdodCUzRCUyMjMxNSUyMiUyMGZyYW1lYm9yZGVyJTNEJTIyMCUyMiUyMHNjcm9sbGluZyUzRCUyMm5vJTIyJTIwd2Via2l0QWxsb3dGdWxsU2NyZWVuJTIwbW96YWxsb3dmdWxsc2NyZWVuJTIwYWxsb3dGdWxsU2NyZWVuJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNF[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”5/12″][vc_raw_html]JTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwc3JjJTNEJTIyaHR0cHMlM0ElMkYlMkZlbWJlZC50ZWQuY29tJTJGdGFsa3MlMkZjYXJvbF9kd2Vja190aGVfcG93ZXJfb2ZfYmVsaWV2aW5nX3RoYXRfeW91X2Nhbl9pbXByb3ZlJTIyJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI0NTAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBzY3JvbGxpbmclM0QlMjJubyUyMiUyMHdlYmtpdEFsbG93RnVsbFNjcmVlbiUyMG1vemFsbG93ZnVsbHNjcmVlbiUyMGFsbG93RnVsbFNjcmVlbiUzRSUzQyUyRmlmcmFtZSUzRQ==[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”10/12″][vc_custom_heading text=”resilience meets growth mindset ” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]You’ll notice that we’ve also embedded Carol Dweck’s Growth Mindset Ted talk.

Although they aren’t the same thing, there is quite a bit of overlap between resilience and growth mindset. In fact, Duckworth mentions Growth Mindset, as a great way to build grit in her talk.

We won’t discuss growth mindset in detail in this article other than to say, people who possess a growth mindset:

view failure and criticism as an opportunity to learn- not a devastating final outcome

 have a positive attitude and see effort as a route to excellence

persist in the face of setbacks and find solutions to overcome obstacles

This are all attributes of a resilient person and exactly what we want to encourage, so we focus a lot on helping our kids to develop a growth mindset.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”small steps taken often” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]A recent study has shown that if you take small steps, don’t overload their brains, and make sure that the learning has really sunk in before moving on, then kids progress more quickly and enjoy learning much more- even in tricky and unglamorous subjects like maths.

So, we watched a video on resilience and/or growth mindset 2x or 3x a week for the first month. This keeps resilience front of mind, deepens understanding as well as helping resilience to become part of our family DNA.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”other great resources” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]YOUNGER KIDS

The twins are 9 so the Ted talks were fine (with lots of pauses), however, if you have younger kids then we would recommend heading over to classdojo. They have really cool videos explaining Perseverance and Growth Mindset.

A great little video describing the differences between a growth and a fixed mindset.

ANIMATED BOOK REVIEWS

We would recommend reading both Grit and Mindset. If you don’t have the time to read a whole book then you could always try the next best thing, a 10 min (or less) animated book review.

Here’s a nice one of Grit by Productivity Gain.

This is a good one of Mindset from Calibrain.

Both are good to watch with the kids, with pauses or in multiple bite-sized chunks.

EXPLAIN HOW THE BRAIN WORKS

We also found that it really helps to tell the kids how the brain works and how neural pathways develop. It’s a nice way to explain what’s going on when they learn new stuff and it also helps those who perhaps lean towards a more fixed mindset, to begin to understand that it’s not a permanent state, they can change too.

The brain animation series does a brilliant job of explaining a complex subject and Neuroplasticity is the one to watch to help kids understand how the brain can change (both by Sentis).

If your child is older and/or more interested in this area, then this series on the nervous system by the amazing Khan Academy is worth a watch.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”FIND OUT HOW MY KIDS WILL BENEFIT FROM THE RESILIENCE BOOTCAMP” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#203e4a” outline_custom_hover_background=”#ce879f” outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”square” align=”center” i_align=”right” i_icon_fontawesome=”fa fa-arrow-circle-right” add_icon=”true” link=”url:http%3A%2F%2Flifehacksforkids.co.uk%2Fresilience-bootcamp-interest%2F||target:%20_blank”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”2″ align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”60″ blox_padding_bottom=”60″ blox_bgcolor=”#58646d”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”step 2: help your child to discover their values” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space][vc_column_text]Ultimately, we want our kids to demonstrate their resilience through their behaviour, however, behaviour is only the outward manifestation of what’s happening on the inside. 

Your values drive your beliefs, your thoughts, your emotional state and finally your behaviour.

If you truly want to have a lasting influence, then you have to dig a little deeper and focus your efforts on the very things that produce behaviour in the first place: values.

Having clarity on what resilience means and why it’s important for your child and your family, will have the biggest effect on their behaviour.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”values: your secret weapon” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]Values drive every decision and action that you take, from your choice of career, car, where you live, even the clothes you are wearing.

You tend not to realise this because our values remain hidden away in our subconscious.

For most of us, this means sleepwalking through life not really understanding what truly motivates us and can often lead us to make bad choices.

However, if you take the time to understand, define and clarify your values, you develop your own personal internal compass that will guide you through every action and decision, as Roy E. Disney said:

It’s not hard to make decisions when you know what your values are.

By helping them (and you) to understand what is important to you about resilience and why you will give your kids a personal framework that they can use for the rest of their life.

How did we do this with our kids?[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”create a family manifesto” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]Don’t worry, we aren’t suggesting that you start your own political party.

Instead, the idea is to discuss what resilience means to you and your kids and to encapsulate these thoughts into a document that will provide your family with an internal compass which will guide your thoughts, focus, decisions and actions.

A code of behaviour that can motivate and inspire your family to make the right resilient choices.

Here’s ours:

family resilience manifesto[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”how to use it” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]

STEP 1: DISCUSS and DECIDE

It’s important to bring values out into the open. You can discuss subjects such as success, failure, attitude, work ethic, dealing with problems, talent vs effort etc… The point of this exercise is to find common ground so that everyone understands what’s important about these subject areas and why.

To help, we’ve designed a simple and fun questionnaire that will guide you through this process.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”Launch Manifesto Questionnaire” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#203e4a” outline_custom_hover_background=”#ce879f” outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”square” align=”center” i_align=”right” i_icon_fontawesome=”fa fa-arrow-circle-right” add_icon=”true” link=”url:https%3A%2F%2Flifehacksforkids.typeform.com%2Fto%2Fu40pqW||target:%20_blank”][vc_column_text]

STEP 2: DISPLAY

Once we’d had our discussion, we designed and printed out our manifesto.  We then all signed it and stuck it on our fridge, pride of place where we spend most of our ‘together’ time. We also stuck one up in each bedroom to serve as a regular reminder.

The idea is that by having the values there, as a physical thing, writ large for all to see, discussed, and signed for- holds us all to a higher behavioural standard.

Trust me, if your behaviour deviates (even for a moment) from your values manifesto, the little buggers treasures will take great delight in letting you know.

Now you have a blueprint for what your family stands for and believes in, you own a compass that will guide all your future actions and decisions.

Very Powerful stuff.

(For more info you can read our article on Values here)[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”want your own manifesto?” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]If you would like a personalised one, either with your family name, photo, or own values just click on the button below.[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”YEP, I’D LOVE MY OWN PERSONALISED FAMILY MANIFESTO” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#203e4a” outline_custom_hover_background=”#ce879f” outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”square” align=”center” i_align=”right” i_icon_fontawesome=”fa fa-arrow-circle-right” add_icon=”true” link=”url:https%3A%2F%2Flifehacksforkids.typeform.com%2Fto%2Fu40pqW||target:%20_blank”][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”2″ align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”60″ blox_padding_bottom=”60″ blox_bgcolor=”#58646d”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”step 3: help your child to believe they are resilient” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_column_text]After your values, the next most important area to tackle is the beliefs that your child has about themselves.

If they believe themselves to be resilient, they are more likely to produce resilient behaviour.

The opposite is also true.

Think for a moment of a belief that you have. Anything, it could be that you believe that ‘Donald Trump is a fantastic President’.

Now, there are lots of people who believe that, and there are lots of people who believe exactly the opposite. So who’s right?

A belief is just something that you hold to be true.

In this example, both sides of the argument will believe they are right because in their own minds they will have enough supporting evidence for that belief.

How do we apply this to our kids?

If we can provide them with enough supporting evidence, then we can help them believe that they are resilient.

How did we do that in practice?[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”harness the progress principle” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]The idea behind the progress principle is that you help your child to ‘notice’ those moments in their life where they demonstrate resilience.

To help them build their supporting evidence, you keep a record of these real-life examples, thus creating a powerful background narrative of resilience in the mind of your child.

This idea is based on research done over a period of 15 years, which studied some 12,000 diary entries of hundreds of employees across 7 different companies. It found that:

… the more frequently people experience that sense of progress, the more likely they are to be creatively productive in the long run. … everyday progress—even a small win—can make all the difference in how [people] feel and perform.

For our purposes, this works in 3 ways:

  1. you are building the supporting evidence to reinforce the belief that they are resilient.

  2. they will perform better because they will feel as though they are making progress towards being resilient.

  3. they will feel good too- making progress activates the reward circuitry of the brain- ‘feel-good’ chemicals and neurotransmitters such as dopamine are released in the body.

[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”how we do this in real life” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]You will need to start compiling evidence, which means that to start with you are going to have to do the heavy lifting to get the ball rolling (we never said that raising a resilient kid was going to be easy).

We have experimented with a few ideas here:

Go old school with a diary or a calendar and make a note each day of things that they do to demonstrate resilience.

Start a journal with your child, use photos, drawings, anecdotes to make it bright and interesting.

Or you can go all 21st century and use an online journal or we use keepy for this (which we like because you can involve friends and family to create a resilience support network)

Help your child to create a positive self-image, an internal narrative and belief system that will help them to be more and more resilient and to feel good about it along the way.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”2″ align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”60″ blox_padding_bottom=”60″ blox_bgcolor=”#58646d”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”step 4: help your child to embrace failure” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row parallax=”” parallax_image=”” video_fullscreen=”true” video_url=”” video_type=”video/youtube”][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_column_text]Now we have tackled values and beliefs, the next area to tackle is emotions and we chose to focus on dealing with the emotions associated with failure.

Failure is a biggy- it touches one of the deepest fears that we have- the ‘fear of not being good enough‘ and this is a real problem for our kids for 2 reasons:

it holds them back and stops them from ‘going for things’- you might recognise this trait in yourself

it helps to cement a ‘fixed mindset’ – your kids see failure as a destination rather than a temporary stopover and they become less inclined to work harder or to change strategy to get the results they want

So, if we want to help our kids overcome this fear, we need to help them to see failure in a different light altogether.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”let them experience failure” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]This is a really quick win.

Next time your kids ‘screw up’ regardless of how tempting it might be to step in and ‘help’- don’t.  By ‘helping’ you are actually depriving them of a valuable opportunity to learn to solve the problem themselves. By all means, ask questions to help stimulate their solution(s), but, allow them to come up with their own answers.

But as you’ve probably already guessed, over at Lifehacksforkids towers, we like to do things a bit differently, so, every week we play something we call…[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”the failure game” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]We got this idea from an article we read about Spanx creator Sara Blakley. If you don’t know her story, check it out, she is the personification of resilience and grit, and she attributes a large part of her success to her attitude towards failure.

She developed this attitude thanks to her father, who when she and her brother were growing up, used to ask them what they’d failed at each week.

If they couldn’t think of anything then he’d be disappointed, but if they had failed at something, he used to celebrate and give them a high-five!

He would then asked them what they had learned from the experience. This is a brilliant idea that works in three ways:

  1. He systematically desensitised them to failure by exposing them to it on a regular basis.

  2. He reversed the normal reward system, so failure was celebrated as a success and not having failed was in fact, a failure.

  3. He taught his children to reframe their failure as a learning opportunity. He would ask them to tell him about their failure and then they would write down what they had learned from their experience.

We love this idea, in fact, we have Failure Fridays in our house where we ask the kids each week what they failed at and most importantly, what they learned from it. We have a failure book where we write these experiences down, so the kids know it’s important and they have a record.

IMPORTANT:

We are only interested in framing failure in relation to the kids trying or going for something.

It’s about something that they did or didn’t do… it’s not about them, their person or personality. We don’t want to turn this into an exercise in self-flagellation. So we devised a sequence of questions to help frame this the right way.

What did you ‘fail at this week?’

How is that a failure in relation to you ‘trying’?

What did you learn?

What will you do to improve next time (make it simple- just one thing)?[/vc_column_text][vc_btn title=”WANT MORE GREAT IDEAS ON HOW TO BUILD GRIT IN YOUR KIDS? CHECK OUT OUR RESILIENCE BOOTCAMP” style=”outline-custom” outline_custom_color=”#203e4a” outline_custom_hover_background=”#ce879f” outline_custom_hover_text=”#ffffff” shape=”square” align=”center” i_icon_fontawesome=”fa fa-file-text” add_icon=”true”][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”2″ align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”60″ blox_padding_bottom=”60″ blox_bgcolor=”#58646d”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”step 5: help your child to start the day off the right way” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row parallax=”” parallax_image=”” video_fullscreen=”true” video_url=”” video_type=”video/youtube”][vc_column][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_column_text]We do this every morning, just before the kids leave for school, and even though we are frequently met with grumbles, scowls and moans, we insist.

We insist for 2 reasons:

  1. although it looks daft (imagine 4 grinning human starfish in the living room), you actually feel great.

  2. it’s helping our kids to understand the power of physiology (more on this in a sec).

Welcome to the Power Pose, the brainchild of  Social psychologist Amy Cuddy, Associate Professor at Harvard Business School.

But what is it exactly and why are we doing it?

It turns out that how we position our body (our physiology) has a direct affect on how we think and feel, in other words, our emotional state. How we think and feel affects our behaviour and how we behave affects our results.

Being resilient often means taking action when you don’t feel like it, so if we can teach our kids this skill, how to be in control of their emotional state simply by using their body, this is an incredibly powerful tool.

Good stuff, so…[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”how do you do it?” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]Think stationary Usain Bolt as he crosses the finish line, that’s what you’re after.

Arms aloft, head tilted upwards, big grin, legs spread.

Start by holding it for 30 seconds to start with, then ramp it up.

See if you can get to 2 minutes.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”and what does it do?” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]This pose is called ‘pride’ and it’s thought to be hardwired into our brain, even congenitally blind people do it when they cross the finish line.

Opening up the body in this way alters the body’s chemistry:

It increases the amount of testosterone which is the dominance hormone and is associated with an increased tolerance for risk.

Cuddy’s research also found that it reduces the amount of cortisol in the body and when cortisol levels drop it means that you can handle stressful situations better.

In short, this pose enables you to feel more confident and able to deal with stuff, a recipe for resilience.

We want the kids to go out of the door feeling ready to take on the world, to be at their best and to give their all during the day.

And as for the smile, well that just makes you feel happier and who wouldn’t want to leave the house in the morning feeling happy?[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”2″ align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”60″ blox_padding_bottom=”60″ blox_bgcolor=”#58646d”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”step 6: help your child to end the day on the right note” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row parallax=”” parallax_image=”” video_fullscreen=”true” video_url=”” video_type=”video/youtube”][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_column_text]We want to bookend each day with a positive resilience-enhancing experience.

In our quest for simplicity, we like to ask the kids a question to help them frame their day, just as we are putting them to bed (as this is a routine, it’s easy to make asking this question a habit).

We live so much of our lives on autopilot, never really stopping to appreciating the things that we do and when we do, we rarely give ourselves much in the way of credit.

This little exercise helps our kids to stop, recognise and appreciate those moments, as well as helping them to build resilience.

Most nights we usually ask:

What happened today that you are grateful for?

We like gratitude because in the immortal words of Tony Robbins (who spends 3 minutes each morning thinking of the things he’s grateful for), ‘…when you’re grateful you can’t be angry and when you’re grateful you can’t be fearful.’

Not having any fear is a nice resilient ‘state’ to be in and being grateful for your day seems like a lovely way to fall asleep.

Whatever your child says, it’s important to get them to qualify their answer by asking Why? or What?

This helps them to process the event again and will anchor the positive feelings to the behaviour.[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”mix it up a bit” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]Asking the same question each night can get a little repetitive, so mix it up, we want our kids to really think about different things in their lives that they are truly grateful for. So we will ask:

name one person you are grateful for and why?

one thing you are grateful for and why?

name one thing in nature you are grateful for and why?

Here’s a link to a great site we like that has loads of prompts that will help you to keep the gratitude question fresh.

Again to mix things up we also change the subject matter and ask them: What did you do today… 

… that made you proud and how did it make you proud?/ that made you happy and why?/ that you did to the best of your ability?/ where you persevered?/ where you overcame a challenge?/  that made you appreciate yourself and how?

A really simple daily exercise that harnesses the power of the ‘progress principle’, whilst providing ‘evidence’ to support the belief that that are a resilient human being.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”2″ align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”60″ blox_padding_bottom=”60″ blox_bgcolor=”#58646d”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”step 7: help your child to be self-motivated” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row parallax=”” parallax_image=”” video_fullscreen=”true” video_url=”” video_type=”video/youtube”][vc_column][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_column_text]Believe it or not, we’ve got the US Marines to thank for this one!

It’s subtle (which we like), and it means that your kids will be doing more, while you do less (which we like even more).

At some point, your child is going to have to have the get-up-and-go to do stuff for themselves, to push on when it’s easier not to, they need to be able to self-motivate.

The key to this can be found rather surprisingly, in getting your kids to make decisions; lots and lots of decisions.

This idea we got from Charles Duhigg‘s bestselling book Smarter Faster Better, in which he tells the story of how General Kulak completely re-designed Marine Bootcamp, so as to improve the self-motivation of his recruits.

Essentially the recruits would be told that they needed to do things such as clean the mess hall and clear the kitchens, and that was it, they were told nothing else.

They had to work out and decide for themselves the specifics of the task.

By doing this Kulak forced them to:

develop their interior locus of control: People who have this, believe that they can exert some control over their destiny- in that their choices influence their life outcomes. (People who don’t have it, believe in fate and are less likely to act and be self-motivated.)

develop a bias towards action, in order to get the job done, they had to start somewhere. By simply starting, you are more likely to finish and you avoid the dreaded analysis/paralysis of inactivity.

Now you’d have thought that in wanting to be a Marine, you were pretty self-motivated to start with, so the fact that Kulak introduced this, has powerful connotations for our kids.

Duhigg states that motivation is essentially a question of control, and we feel in control by knowing that our decisions affect our outcomes.

So how can we force our kids to make more decisions?

STEP 1

Hand over the decision making process and responsibility to your kids for as many things as possible and as often as you can. Below we include a list of the things our kids decide regularly:

Which route to take home from school/ what to have for dinner/ what to wear/ what we do at the weekend/ where to go on holiday/ appropriate rewards and punishments for their behaviour/ what veg to get at the supermarket/ what clothes to wear based on the weather forecast/ what film we watch etc…

The subject matter is irrelevant, it’s making the decision that counts.

STEP 2

Not sure about you, but we do a load of stuff around the house that the kids are perfectly capable of doing. So, pick something that they don’t do yet, but can, e.g. load the dishwasher/ wash their clothes/ clean the car/ do the online shopping.

And… just tell them that you expect it to be done, by when and just leave them to it. Don’t tell them how to do it, or where to find the stuff they need- they have to figure it out.

If you get any resistance, remember to play the ‘it’s about teaching you to be resilient, I’m only doing my job as a loving parent’ card!

This from familyeducation.com is a great list of age appropriate chores if, in the unlikely event, you are in need of any inspiration![/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/12″][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”2″ align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”60″ blox_padding_bottom=”60″ blox_bgcolor=”#58646d”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”step 8: help your child learn how to take risks” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row parallax=”” parallax_image=”” video_fullscreen=”true” video_url=”” video_type=”video/youtube”][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_column_text]Resilience often means doing something when you don’t want to.

If we can help our kids to learn to act in the face of their fears, that would be a very powerful attribute to possess.

We do this by getting them to do stuff that’s a bit scary so that they learn to ‘feel the fear and do it anyway’.

How does this work?

Remember General Kulak and his ‘bias towards action’? Doing something in the face of fear teaches our kids that they can act, even when it’s scary. Taking the first step is more than half the battle- things are never as scary as they seem, once some (any) action has been taken.

Next, doing stuff that’s dangerous and scary helps your child to realise that they are capable of more than they thought possible, which helps them to build a positive self-image- an important feature of a resilient person.

Finally, life is about taking risks. In order to achieve anything, some risk has to be taken, this will teach your kids that dealing with risk is part of life and if managed correctly, has its rewards.

One other thing I forgot to mention… it’s also bloody good fun!

So for this exercise, we love Fifty Dangerous Things, filled with great and crazy ‘dangerous’ activities from using power tools and licking 9-volt batteries, to driving a car. We like to let the kids do at least one dangerous/ scary thing each weekend. As American poet John Berryman said:

We must travel in the direction of our fear.

This is a great way to learn how to travel in the direction of their fear… and just bloody do it anyway.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”2″ align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”60″ blox_padding_bottom=”60″ blox_bgcolor=”#58646d”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”step 9: help your child to develop a growth mindset” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_column_text]Life provides a constant stream of experiences and opportunities that parents can use to help their children learn.

The problem is, we’re often so wrapped up in doing ‘stuff’ that we miss these ‘teachable moments’.

Not only that, but how do you use these moments to best effect?

During our 2-year stint homeschooling our twins, we were keen to maximise our efforts, so we developed a sequence of questions that allowed us to turn almost any experience into a learning one.

By having an easily remembered set process, you can use every situation to your (and their) advantage. And the great thing is, your child is using their own experiences to learn which is much more powerful than you giving them the ‘lesson’.

So, whether it’s a film they have just seen, an incident at school, or a family situation, there is a learning experience for your kids in there somewhere.

The sequence of questions below will help you to find it:

[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”how the questions work” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]These questions work best if asked in your own conversational style, we don’t always ask them and we don’t always ask all five, we go with what we feel to be most appropriate.

The most important thing is to have the framework in mind, ready to use as and when the opportunities arise.

Q1: What was positive about that?

This helps them to frame their experience in a positive light or look for positives in what may be a difficult experience.

No matter how disastrous the situation, there is always a positive to be gleaned, this question helps your child to recognise it.

A positive attitude is an important characteristic to possess if you want to be resilient.

Q2: What did you learn?

This question means that they have to frame the situation as a learning experience.

This helps them to see that all life experience is an opportunity to learn, and having framed the situation in a positive way (Q1), your child is more likely to elicit a positive learning experience.

Q3: How would you do it better next time?

This teaches kids that things aren’t set in stone and that any outcome can be altered by a change in strategy, thought or action- the very essence of a growth mindset.

We found that this really frees the kids up from the fear of getting small stuff wrong. Plus, it challenges them to think creatively and to look for solutions, perfect traits of resilience.

(If the situation didn’t involve them you could ask ‘How could it be done better next time?’ or ‘If it were you in that situation how would you do it better?’)

Q4: How could you use that in your life?

Now we are asking them to translate their thoughts into a real-life situation.

This encourages creative thinking and gives them their own blueprint for future possible actions.

It takes something conceptual i.e. a thought and gives it life, it’s still a thought, but now the kids have primed themselves for future action in the real-world.

Q5: How will this solution help you?

The final question is intended to attach positive feelings towards this new course of action.

It helps them recognise at a conscious and unconscious level, the benefits of this action, which will make them more likely to take the action.

For a free printable of our 5 questions click here.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”2″ align_center=”aligncenter” blox_padding_top=”40″ blox_bgcolor=”#58646d”][vc_column]

over to you

[/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”10/12″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_column_text]Ok, that’s us done…

That’s a list of the things we do each day and each week so as to help our kids to develop their resilience.

Thank you for reading this article, now you have a choice.

You can save this document for future reference or… you can take action and do something about it right now.

Resilient kids aren’t born and how resilient your treasures end up will (largely) be down to the work and effort you put in today.

To help you take the next step, we’ve created a Resilience Checklist that will motivate you to put some or all of our ideas into practice, which you can find on our resources page- for instant access pop your email address here.

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If you have any thoughts or questions please let us know, dominic @ lifehacksforkids (dot) co.uk we’d love to know how you got on.

Oh and don’t forget our…[/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”resilience bootcamp” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]For those of you who want to go the extra mile,  we’ve created a RESILIENCE BOOTCAMP (for your kids).

A 12-week programme, in which we harness the best ideas from the worlds of sport, business, science and psychology, that enable your kids to learn and experience how to be RESILIENT.

Sign up here:

[thrive_leads id=’11193′][/vc_column_text][vc_custom_heading text=”please share” font_container=”tag:h2|text_align:center|color:%23ce879f” google_fonts=”font_family:Oswald%3A300%2Cregular%2C700|font_style:400%20regular%3A400%3Anormal”][vc_separator color=”custom” el_width=”10″ accent_color=”#58646d”][vc_column_text]We really hope that you enjoyed this article and have found it useful, if so, we would really appreciate you sharing it.

Thank you very much, Dominic & Lindsay (the Lifehacksforkids team).[/vc_column_text][vc_tweetmeme share_via=”lifehacks4kids” large_button=”true”][vc_facebook][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”10/12″][vc_text_separator title=”Footnotes”][vc_column_text]If you are looking for some great books to read buying from these affiliate links below helps to support our work at no extra cost to you:

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth

Mindset: Changing the way you think to fulfil your potential by Carol Dweck

Your One Word: The Powerful Secret to Creating a Business and Life That Matter by Evan Carmichael

The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy

50 Dangerous Things (You Should Let Your Children Do) by Gever Tulley

Smarter Faster Better by Charles Duhigg[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″][/vc_column][/vc_row]