Resilient, Confident Kids - 10 Ways to Promote Resilience in Children
By Michael Grose
Do your children have a McChildhood? Do they experience the type of
childhood that may satisfy them in the short-term as their immediate
needs are met, but in the long-term, leaves them ill-equipped to
deal with some of the curve balls that are thrown their way?
The emergence of indoor playgrounds is an example of the lengths we
go to not only provide a sanitized life for kids but to ensure that
they never get bored (or even get wet and cold when they play)!
It helps sometimes to stand back and take stock of the type of
childhood that we provide for our kids.
Here are 10 elements of a childhood that promotes resilience in
children and young people.
A resiliency-promoting childhood has the following features:
1. Kids don't always get what they want. The Rolling Stones were
right when they sang, “You can't always get what you want, but you
can try” all those years ago.
2. They have plenty of opportunities to solve their own problems
without adults trying to fix everything for them. Children will only
develop their inner resources when given the opportunity to develop
3. Children are expected to help at home from a young age without
being paid. That is how they learn to be useful.
4. Parental expectations for success are positive, realistic and
based on child's interests and aptitudes rather than on adult
5. Children receive liberal amounts of encouragement but moderate
amounts of praise. Praise is like French fries – kids want them but
they don't need them. They need something a little more substantial
than quick fix, feel-good praise. They need something substantial
like encouragement to help them grow and develop.
6. Children have plenty of free time to do three essential things –
play outside, have fun and to daydream. But they need to have the
opportunity to initiate all three, rather than have them initiated
by someone. These three essentials help insulate human beings when
life gets out of control.
7. Children are involved in family decision-making so that they
learn to impact positively on their environment.
8. Children have the opportunity to identify their strengths and
then build on these to develop their unique identities through
9. Children grow up in families that have their own rituals, rights
of passage and celebrations. These rituals provide important anchors
to children as they develop and grow away.
10. Resilient children need to be surrounded by resilient adults
rather than adults who are continually stressed and have no real
life outside from children and work. Begin a hobby is a good place
to start if you feel that life is all work (and kids) and no fun.
Michael Grose is a popular parenting educator and parent coach. He is the director of Parentinginc, the author of seven
books for parents and a popular presenter who speaks to audiences in Australian Singapore and the USA. For free courses
and resources to help you raise happy kids and resilient teenagers visit