How to connect students to their dreams and goals, no matter the odds stacked against them.
Adversity is something we all face at one point or another in our lives. Overcoming adversity means getting past obstacles and challenges that stand in your way. Fort Behavioral Health says there are six types of adversity one can face, and facing adversities in life can make or break a person:
- Physical Adversity: Physical disability such as an injury or being blind, deaf, obese, or in chronic pain and having to deal with the difficulties of those ailments may force someone to have to fight to achieve a normal life.
- Mental Adversity: A mental problem, or mental illness, may limit someone.
- Emotional Adversity: Self-worth is vital to develop, as rage and sadness can lead to problems in dealing with daily life.
- Social Adversity: Being limited in social skills can severely limit a person from getting a job, making friends, or maintaining a family unit.
- Spiritual Adversity: Faith is an advantage in life. It helps when one has hope, compassion, and love for themselves and others to cope with daily life.
- Financial Adversity: Not being able to afford necessities creates a barrier to leading a happy life and can lead to jealousy and anger.
According to iMom.com, “Failing hurts, but it also builds character if handled in the right way.” As parents, it’s our protective instinct to want to do all we can to help our children succeed. But even the most persistent parents cannot protect their children from every life challenge—nor should they.
5 Ways to Overcome Adversity
According to All Pro Dad, “Unfortunately, many children learn too early that obstacles are either there for someone else to deal with, or simply not worth the trouble. Consequently, too many young people leave school and enter the workplace without a good grasp on the possible. The obstacles are not going away, and our children need to understand the art of the possible.”
Here are five ways you can empower your children to overcome obstacles, teaching them how to overcome adversity in their lives.
- Show them how: Kids are sponges. They see, hear, and take in everything we do. According to iMom.com, “Our kids learn a lot by watching us handle the challenges that come our way. So, when we face an obstacle, we need to react with maturity and hope, not with hysterics and defeat.” One of the most important things you can do for your children is allowing them to see you face a challenge, and whether the result is you prevailing or failing, it’s imperative for them to see how you respond.
- Facilitate Solution-Oriented Conversations: Here is an exercise you and your family can start today; at the dinner table, present a problem or challenge you are currently facing, and ask your children how they would solve it. All Pro Dad suggests the example, “Hey kids, we’ve decided to cut 10% off the family spending budget. Let’s talk about what we can do together to make this work.”
- The Big Picture: Put yourself in your children’s shoes, and try to see from their perspective what challenges and obstacles they may face on a daily basis. To them, issues they face may feel like the weight of the world is on their shoulders. As parents, we can help our children see their obstacle in light of the bigger picture. iMom.com says, “A tough homework assignment is just that, one assignment. Show them how, in the big picture, there will be days that are tough, but there will be many days that are less challenging as well.”
- Volunteer with your children: Whether it’s through a local nonprofit organization, a church community project, or other volunteer committee, regularly volunteer with your children. Volunteering can teach important skills such as leadership, communication, organization, and project management. It can also help them feel a part of their community, give them a sense of achievement and purpose, and improve their self-esteem and confidence.
- Practice reflection: One of the greatest things you can teach your children is the importance of reflection. Time needs to be built into their day to allow them to reflect on what they’re learning or experiencing and make meaning of it. This helps them to process information as they reconcile it with their prior knowledge and work to make the information stick. Journaling is a great way for them to write down an experience or challenge they are facing, and for them to learn how to articulate their feelings, thinking to be clarified, questions to be sought, or learning to be extended.
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