Guest Poster: Laura Casey
Your child can’t accept losing? It’s a common scenario for young kids, they are very sensitive to losing at games and sports. However, it’s important to help kids learn to fail. In this post, we describe the most effective ways to do it. Read on!
Losing is a normal part of our life, however, accepting defeat gracefully doesn’t come naturally. That’s why teaching your child to deal with failure is an important part of parenting. But easier said than done, right? If you are reading this post, you must have already faced kid’s tantrums, explosions of anger and frustrations, screams, and refusals to accept defeat. It’s really hard for kids to lose, especially for those who strive to be perfect.
We, parents, have to teach our kids to manage loss, back up with grace, reflect and focus on the effort. They should learn that things don’t always go our way, even if we’ve earned it or done everything right. It’s not an easy lesson but defeat brings perspective. We learn from failure more than from winning.
Here are tips on how to help kids learn to fail:
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Kids cry when they lose, and the first thing you should do is to calm down your little one. However, parents often get frustrated and shout at the kid to stop the tantrum. Never do this! Your child may think that he/she has disappointed you or even get scared. So, what should you do? First, take a deep breath, calm down and remember that children learn from you. Then tell your little one that you don’t mind the fact that he/she lost. Say a few positive things about what he/she did. Your calm voice and encouraging statements will stabilize the situation, allowing you to tackle it further.
Don’t Focus On The Result Too Much
Parents should praise their kids’ efforts, instead of praising the results. When your child is young, it’s crucial to teach him/her the basic principle that hard work is extremely important for success. If you talk too much about the result, your kid may learn that all that matters to you are results and will try to achieve them without focusing on the process.
To demonstrate to your little one that the process of creating something can be more delightful than the result itself, get or create the best baby memory book and keep it together. You’ll enjoy plenty of sweet, memorable moments together, and the result will be amazing. Your kid will learn that the process can be even more precious than the end goal.
Don’t Let Your Kid Always Win
Many parents think that when they allow kids to always win, they help build their self-confidence. But that’s only half true, and this method can be fine on occasion. Yet we should remember that kids won’t learn how to accept failure gracefully if they never experience disappointment. You don’t want a situation when your child is out in the “real world” and has to learn tough lessons of losing on the fly. On the other hand, give him/her the chance to win, all in all, your kid has to learn how to be a good winner too. So, keep the balance!
Validate Kid’s Feelings
To teach a kid to lose and have him/her be ok with losing are two completely different things. Nobody wants to lose or enjoys losing, and when your little one is upset about his/her defeat, you should recognize that this is a valid feeling. Never brush it off with something like “It’s just a game!” When you help the child to cope with losing, teach him/her that it’s alright to be sad, a bit frustrated, or in pain, explain that he/she has to accept failure without being angry or rude towards others. As we mentioned above, demonstrate to your little one how to deal with unpleasant emotions and stand back up.
Learning to accept defeat gracefully is an art that is only perfected through guidance and experience. We do hope that our recommendations will help you make the process of teaching your kid easier and soon he/she will be able to lose without fits of anger and disappointment.
Author’s bio: Laura Casey is a blogger, mother, and housewife who shares her vast experience in parenting, motherhood, and pregnancy. Her articles have already helped a lot of people who deal with parenting. She draws inspiration from raising kids, Motherhood itself and blogging. One of the most useful blogs in her list is https://top-mom.com/ . Check it out!