Developing Resiliency in the Young

Resilient Kids

In Margarita Tartakovsky's article on "10 Tips for Raising Resilient Kids," in the summer issue of Connections,(also found online at, she notes that common childhood challenges of sickness, competition, bullying, loneliness, and social hurts are not easily handled. But resilient kids face tough situations and problem solve. Anxious parents need to gradually pull back from making things too easy and comfortable, thereby creating dependent, unimaginative children.

To help young people, ask them to consider possibilities and choose which seems wisest. Ask how and minimize why questions. Don't create fear by visualizing catastrophe but explore the different possible outcomes and how to handle each. As psychotherapist Lynn Lyons advises, "Teach your kids all emotions are okay."

Failure is temporary and valuable if we learn the right lessons from our mistakes. Modeling resiliency includes admitting our mistakes and controlling our emotions. When the young take positive action, an appreciative compliment can add their resolve to be resilient in the future.

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Dr. Glen Fahs is a trainer and consultant in adult education and organization development. He is the primary facilitator for the international Al Siebert Resiliency Center. He has taught at 12 colleges and universities in the fields of management, speech communication, human resources, and education. © Al Siebert Resiliency Center
PO Box 505
Portland, Oregon 97207 USA

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