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Friday 4 September 2015

posted 9 Sep 2015, 15:12 by Stephanie Williams
'Resilience is the ability to grow and thrive in the face of challenges and bounce back from adversity. 'Resilience enables you to take calculated risks and capitalise on opportunities' (Reivich, 2010)

One of the three principles is on developing 'the whole child'. This being the case, building resilience has to have a magnifying glass all over it!  All year I have been pushing the mantra, "If you can't learn to fail you....."  "You fail to learn", the children chant back. Whether it's a hiccup in the playground or wariness of being 'wrong' when attempting new vocabulary.....  it's the same deal. It's all about seeing the world in perspective, getting over it and moving forward.

If we can encourage children to 'hunt the good stuff' on a daily basis, we can support them to build greater resilience, which in turn creates a more optimistic outlook in life. By focussing on the 'what went well' at home and at school, this will increase the ability to bounce back when things aren't so great. This will, in time, start to become hardwired and therefore optimise success. 

It's not the flash trips or the best scooter, it's the 'savouring of the simple pleasures' as Neil Pasricha puts it so well in his well read book: "The Book of Awesome". He states that the 3 secrets to leading a life truly awesome comes down to: 
  • Attitude - being able to get over it when things don't go to plan
  • Awareness - being curious, seeing the world through 3 year old eyes
  • Authenticity - being you
If you are interested in his TED TALK: https://www.ted.com/talks/neil_pasricha_the_3_a_s_of_awesome?language=en

Rather than asking the question, "What did you do at school today or what happened today?", where, at most, you may get a "nothing" or "played", try asking "What went well today?", or 'What were the best things about today?", or maybe the 3 top things that happened today. I know that some parents do this as a dinner or bedtime ritual and it works a treat. 

Let's work together to build children up for coping with disappointment and challenge, let's try not to solve everything for them but give them tools to deal with things when they don't go as expected...... that's how we will build resilience, increase optimism and therefore success.

So go on, let's embrace our inner 3 year old this weekend, it's got to be good for us!