Resiliency 101 Should be on Kids’ Schedules this School Year
Depression and anxiety are becoming more and more common on college campuses and one reason experts are pointing to is students’ high expectations of themselves coupled with a lack of resiliency. Generation Y has been called the “teacup generation” because of their perceived fragility, especially when finding themselves on their own in college, without their parents to help them problem solve on a daily basis. Lynn Lyons, a therapist and author who specializes in treating anxious families said, “We have become a culture of trying to make sure our kids are comfortable. We as parents are trying to stay one step ahead of everything our kids are going to run into.” The problem, she says, “life doesn’t work that way.”
According to PsychCentral, here are five ways to help develop resilience in children:
1. Don’t accommodate every need. By trying to provide certainty and comfort, we are getting in the way of children being able to develop their own problem solving and mastery–overprotecting kids only fuels their anxiety.
2. Avoid eliminating all risk. Giving kids age-appropriate freedom helps them learn their own limits.
3. Don’t provide all the answers and let them make mistakes. Help them become comfortable with uncertainty and allow them to see the consequences of their actions.
4. Help them manage their emotions. It’s important for kids to know that all emotions are ok, but don’t always need to be acted upon; after feeling something, they need to think about the best next step.
5. Model resiliency. Kids learn most from observing their parents.
For more information on building resiliency in children, check out these helpful links:
Raising Resilient Kids
Raising Resilient Children (Psychology Today)
Is Your Child Resilient? (PBS)
10 Tips for Raising Resilient Kids (PsychCentral)