8 Tips for Raising a Mentally Strong Child

19 September, 2016

The world is full of challenges. Being mentally strong is a fundamental part of facing these challenges. It’s important to raise our children to be mentally strong so that they feel capable of facing these challenges.

Mentally strong children are able to approach problems in a productive way, recover from failures with efficiency and face difficulties in a competent manner. If you want your child to be able to confront challenges you should help him develop his mental strength.

What is mental strength?

boy gears in head

Mental strength depends on resilience, self-esteem, confidence and self-efficacy. Helping children develop their mental strength requires an approach that integrates the following:

  • The substitution of negative thoughts for more realistic thoughts
  • Emotional control
  • Productive behavior, even in less than favorable circumstances

Strategies for the development of mental strength in children

There are various strategies and tools that can help children develop their mental strength.

Teaching specific abilities to correct bad behavior

When a child misbehaves we have an excellent opportunity to teach them specific abilities, such as the ability to resolve problems, control impulses and exercise self-discipline. These abilities will help the child learn to behave in a productive manner, to face circumstances and difficult setbacks and to resolve their problems.

Letting children make their own mistakes

Your child will learn very valuable life lessons if you let them make their own mistakes. The job of a parent is not to protect their children from error, but rather to teach them that mistakes are part of the learning process, so you shouldn’t feel ashamed or uncomfortable about it.

girl lightbulbs

Parents and educators should teach children to learn from their mistakes and urge them to try again, learning from the failures made the last time. Besides, you have to allow natural consequences to happen, as long as it’s safe, and talk to your kids about how to avoid that same mistake from repeating itself next time.

Keeping negativity from them

It’s hard for children to feel mentally strong when they are humiliated or when they are taught to expect bad outcomes. Encourage your child to think realistically and positively. Realistic thoughts help to strengthen optimism as the child learns to find opportunities and trust in his own abilities.

Helping the child face fear

If a child avoids the things he is afraid of, he’ll never have the opportunity to gain confidence in his own ability to deal with the stress this type of situation causes. Furthermore, every child has their own fears. The solution is to accompany and help them gain the necessary confidence in themselves to face their fears.

When children successfully face their fears, they gain confidence, learn to get out of their comfort zone and discover the satisfaction of having achieved something for themselves.

child and monster

Allowing the child to feel uncomfortable

Though it can be tempting to help a child when he is struggling against uncomfortable feelings, to rescue him from every difficulty will only reinforce dependency. If the child feels frustrated, bored or angry, you have to give him a chance to resolve the problem independently.

Children can build their mental strength when they successfully learn that they can cope with their emotions.

Affirming the child’s personal responsibility

Gaining mental strength implies accepting personal responsibility. In order to do this, you need to allow the child to explain his actions, but without using excuses or blaming others for what he’s done.

Teaching abilities of emotional control

In order to build up children’s mental strength, they need to be conscious of their emotions. It’s not about suppressing your feelings, but about teaching them to choose the healthy ways to deal with those feelings.

When children understand their feelings and know how to deal with them, they are better prepared to face challenges.

Being a role model of mental strength

There is no better way to teach than to do so through examples. It’s not enough to just talk to a child about what he has to do, you have to show him. It’s helpful to talk to them about your personal goals and explain to them what you’re doing to become better.

Demonstrating mental strength in your own life is the best way to teach a child to be strong.