The Centre’s research on resilience, confidence, optimism etc, as well as its contact with an Australian programme called Bounce Back, has led us to draw up the following 10 key messages on young people’s resilience. They are designed to help teachers and parents alike see what they can do, on a daily basis, to help develop resilience.
1. Remember that bad feelings: don’t last, have a purpose in life, and can galvanise us to do things differently. This means trying not to be overly concerned if your child feels temporarily frustrated or negative about what's happening to them.
2. Try to normalise your child's set-backs. Help them to see they are not abnormal in having difficulties in life.
3. Help your child to see that problems can be solved.
4. Encourage your child to keep things in perspective – the problem is usually confined to only one part of their lives.
5. Remember the value of humour – laughing can be a great release (but only if it is well-intentioned. No one likes to be laughed at or be the subject of ridicule).
6. Encourage your child to accept responsibility for their actions.
7. When reading stories, or discussing events, point out how people manage to overcome difficulties.
8. Remember that learning is often frustrating. Encourage your child to persist and believe they can get there.
9. Provide support. Help your child to see that you care about them and that there are other people too who can give them help and advice when needed.
10. Create a positive, loving environment, that emphasises the importance of relationships and shared values.