Ways to develop perseverance in children

What is more important for success than talent, communication skills, motivation, intelligence, or practical experience? This trait is called perseverance — the ability to remain interested and make efforts to achieve long-term goals, overcoming external and internal difficulties.

Indeed, if the well-known rule of ten thousand hours of practice is considered a key component of success, perseverance is primarily what makes a person work during this colossal period time. Specialists also define perseverance as “ working hard to solve problems, maintaining effort and interest for many years, despite setbacks, adversities and periods of stagnation.”

In short, perseverance determines who will not leave the race until the end of the race, who will become the winner of the school math competition, and who will enter an elite university, despite the lower score of the final school tests compared to the scores of their peers.

Conceptually, perseverance has the qualities of a chameleon, as it is both a character trait and a skill. In other words, perseverance is an innate strong-willed characteristic of a person, although this does not mean that it is not subject to change — the statement that there are simply “persistent people” is not true. At the same time, perseverance is a skill that can be diligently acquired and practiced.

The following are eight tips on how to cultivate perseverance in a school-age child (or an adult who aspires to become persistent).

Tip # 1: Encourage your child to exercise

Even better, encourage challenging workouts. Training should not hone the skills in which the child has already succeeded; you need to strive to rise a step above your achievements.

Tip # 2. Praise for your efforts, not for the result

When we praise a child with the words “Great! “or” Well done!”, his zeal disappears — the child has nowhere to go. Instead, praise him for his efforts: “To achieve such a great result, you worked very hard” or “You put a lot of effort into it!”.

Tip # 3. Teach your child that depression and confusion are signs of progress

Thoughts such as:” The appearance of depression, which arose in me due to a loss of faith in myself and my abilities (the appearance of frustration), indicates that it is time to give up what I started “or” I am confused and may not be able to cope with this task “should be replaced with thoughts such as” Depression (frustration) is a normal part of the process of learning and working with something new and complex “or”If I am confused, it means that I will find out how to solve this problem and do everything right”.

As soon as you hear your child’s first sighs of annoyance or murmurs of frustration, encourage them to rethink the situation in the way described.

In the same vein, offer support to the child, but do not rush to the rescue at the first sign of difficulties. As long as he can achieve success on his own, make him work on building a constructor or memorizing a difficult multiplication table, and reinforce the effort as part of the training.

Tip # 4. Teach your child to be brave

Courage is closely related to perseverance. Courage does not consist in performing difficult tasks — it means that a person can be afraid, but persevere and act despite his fear. In other words, fear is a necessary condition for bravery.

To develop courage when a child tells you that he is afraid of something, answer him: “You can even do what you’re afraid of.” And the next time you need to submit your own manuscript or go to the doctor, tell yourself the same thing.

Tip # 5. Encourage long-term commitment

The lessons themselves-piano, gymnastics, chess-are not as important as the effort that is put into them. Let the child try different activities until he finds one that he loves and wants to continue doing them. And the word “tries” does not mean a one-time activity: the child must do one thing for six months or a year. If at the end of this time he realizes that this activity is not suitable for him, let him stop it and try something else.

Tip # 6. Teach your child “ growth thinking»

The bottom line is this: with fixed thinking, children believe that their intelligence and abilities are established personality traits that lead them to success or failure, regardless of the effort they put in. But if children practice a growth mindset, they know that their intelligence and abilities can be continuously developed through (try to guess) hard work and perseverance.

So teach your children that the brain is like a muscle: the more you use it, the stronger it becomes. When we experience setbacks and difficulties, the brain trains itself to eventually achieve success.

Tip # 7: Use visual reminders to encourage perseverance and delayed gratification

Small children, for example, can save money for significant purchases, they can put coins in a piggy bank or a transparent jar to watch the process. When you want a child to break a certain habit or force themselves to do something, use a visual reward system: every time they sit down at the piano, or every day when they don’t bite their nails, drop one glass ball into the jar. When the jar is full, the child will receive the previously agreed reward (and, of course, satisfaction from a job well done).

Tip # 8. Do not demand perseverance always and in any situation

Children will not be particularly persistent in what they cannot tolerate. So don’t overestimate perseverance as a means to fall in love with math or sports — the essence of perseverance is passion, not “You’ll do it no matter what, you just have to love it.” Longing increases perseverance, and perseverance allows children to follow their passion.

It is precise because perseverance is so important to children in shaping their character and skills that I have written a book for children about perseverance.

In this story, we meet Max and his parents. It’s Max’s first day of swimming lessons, and he’s super excited. But, things don’t go too well on that first try. Feeling frustrated, Max wants to give up on his dream. Luckily, his parents are there to teach him how to win!

Click the link below to own this book:

Hooray, I can do it: https://bit.ly/37E7GkP