We all experience setbacks. This is what life is about. One of the essential skills in developing perseverance is to overcome the inevitable obstacles that will always be there. The key is to recognize that setbacks by their nature can be overcome. You can teach your children that just as a track and field star jumps over the hurdles on the track, so can they!
Start with one situation that your child is struggling with. It can be schoolwork, sports, relationships, or a personal habit. Ask your kid to tell you exactly what the situation is and what they think the challenge or frustration is.
Once the situation is understood by both you and your child, do some brainstorming. This involves quickly jotting down ideas on how your child can overcome the obstacle that was identified. Next, review ideas to filter ones that make sense. If you’re unfamiliar with brainstorming please see a very interesting short article here (http://www.kiwicrate.com/blog/13258/brainstorming-3-easy-ways-to-engage-kids/).
Once the ideas are filtered to the top 3 ideas that are doable, have your child choose one and decide on the best way to make it happen. Sure, they can choose more than one, but that may lead to paralysis by analysis also known as the inability to act. Choosing a single option allows them to put their whole effort into that solution. If it doesn’t work, guess what! They can select the next best option and see if that allows them to resolve the obstacle in their way.
There is another technique In addition to brainstorming that you can try. Tell them about a time you had a setback and how you overcame it. If your child is struggling with reading, perhaps you did too. Then you could relate to them how you conquered this setback and perhaps inspire them to do the same. What to do if you never had to deal with your son or daughter’s problem before? Find someone who has and tell them the story. You could also find something in your past that is close and draw the parallel between the situation they’re facing and what you faced in the past.
The key skill being developed here is the ability to understand that there are always setbacks in life, they are temporary in most cases, and that there is a systematic way to analyze and overcome them.