Laban At Tatag: Ways To Help Kids Persevere And Overcome Failure
Teach your kids how to be more resilient in the face of life’s challenges
In an evolving world where everything moves in a faster pace, parents may not notice na may pinagdadaanan na ang kanilang mga anak na challenges sa kanilang buhay.
Olivia A. Tatad, Deputy to the Chairman and Guidance Counselor at the St. Jerome School of Novaliches, says “Because we live in a very busy world, madalas wala masyadong time ang mga parents to spend with their kids. They are not aware of the struggles they may have in school or with their peers. This should be a cause for concern, kasi bilang bata, hindi pa nila kaya mag-process ng negative feelings.”
As grownups, the struggles of kids may seem so small compared to ours, but for them, it is something major already. “It might be something like, hindi siya natawag ni teacher kahit nag raise siya ng hand at gustong-gusto niya sumagot. For some children, may feeling of rejection na iyan, kasi iisipin niya bakit yung classmate niya tinawag tapos siya hindi?” Tatad explains.
This may even lead to them acting out and taking their frustrations out on others. “Dahil na-frustrate siya, at hindi niya alam kung paano i-handle yung feelings, mang-aaway siya ng ibang bata,” she adds.
Emotions are valid
To help your child grow with resilience, the first step is to listen. What parents really need to do is to give their children time.
“That's the only way na maririnig nila yun mga pinagdadaanan ng mga anak nila, like the disappointments. Let's say, mayroon silang struggle with friends or peers, or mayroon silang na-encounter na disappointments sa araw na yun, at nalulunod na pala siya sa disappointment at hindi alam ng mga magulang nila yun.”
As children grow, they experience new emotions. Listening to your child will help you to know them better and open conversations that will help them process these new feelings. “At dinnertime, eat together and ask them about their day,” Tatad suggests. “As parents, we have to make sure to be patient and listen to their stories. In your conversations there should be patience, understanding, and acceptance.”
Sometimes, we are clouded by our own problems and situations that we forget that they are still children, and that their emotions are just as valid as ours, she cautions. “For them, these challenges are a battle. Kapag naglaro siya ng patintero at natalo siya, for us, it’s just a game, pero sa kanya, it’s something big already.”
What the children don’t need, she adds, is harsh criticism. “Don’t tell them na, para iyan lang, nagalit ka na?” This will prevent them from opening up to you again in the future.
As a parent, it is important to catch these big emotions from your children and help them to heal. “Being a guidance counsellor, lagi kong sinasabi sa parents na dapat palagi nilang i-heal yung nararamdaman ng mga anak nila para yung bata magiging masaya, and a happy child learns more. Plus, they will be able to be positive in addressing the challenges that they will encounter later on in life.”
There is a big benefit to teaching kids how to handle their negative emotions, as this puts them in a better position to face life’s challenges in the future. They will be the ones to have the confidence to try new things and find new ways to deal with a challenging situation. Here are some ways in which you can help them be more resilient sa mga hamon ng buhay.
Take time to explain from your perspective as a grownup. Tatad advises, “In the scenario na hindi siya tinawag ni teacher, the parent should explain na dahil hindi siya natawag, ni-reject na siya ni teacher. Pwede mo sabihin na, may time kasi na sinusunod si teacher sa class and kailangan matapos yung lesson. Baka alam ni teacher na naiintindihan mo na yung lesson, kaya tinawag niya ang classmate mo to make sure na alam din ng classmate mo yung lesson for the day.”
Stay calm and pacify. “If your child is already crying out of frustration, help him to calm down by being calm yourself. Minsan umiiyak na, pagagalitan mo pa. Hug them, give them water to drink, and help them to resolve their feelings calmly. Otherwise, the frustration might be there even after two weeks, at may kasama na itong sama ng loob sa iyo,” she cautions.
Be a constant presence in their life. “Napupuna ko po sa mga batang lagi nilang kasama yun mga parents nila or laging nandyan yun parents nila, they feel more confident. Parang hindi naman sila masyadong naaapektuhan ng mga negative emotions. I believe that having a relationship based on unconditional love gives them positive support,” Tatad says.
Help them handle failure. She suggests teaching a valuable life lesson.``Importante na ipaliwanag sa kanila that in a game, may mananalo, may matatalo. There should be an understanding that not everything in life will be in our favor all the time,” she explains.
There is a possibility of failure so encourage them to try harder next time or be more prepared if they do not win. “You can say, anak, pag-aralan mo kung paano ka mananalo next time.”
Know when to step back. Teaching them resilience does not mean that you will take up their battles for them. Teach them to handle failure with grace through talking to them, but let them fight their own battles and step in only when it is necessary.
Be a role model. Para magpalaki ng batang may laban, dapat yung magulang may laban din, she says. “You have to be able to demonstrate how you are facing your own challenges with resilience. Ipakita mo sa kanila na hindi ka din sumusuko sa laban mo.”
About The Writer
Maan Pamaraan is a single mom of four boys who finds fulfilment in her decades-long career as a writer for several publications, including (but not limited to) the Philippine Daily Inquirer, the Philippine Star, Manila Bulletin, the Manila Times, BusinessMirror, the Daily Tribune, Esquire Philippines, FHM, Smart Parenting, and Real Living.
When she is not in serious journalist mode, she enjoys sitting in front of her laptop to write light-hearted anecdotes about raising her children along with general observations about life as a working mom. A survivor of an abusive relationship, her current advocacy is also that of lending a sympathetic ear for other women who have found themselves in the same situation.
Maan is a Bachelor's degree graduate from the College of the Holy Spirit.
The views and opinions expressed by the writer are his/her own, and does not state or reflect those of Wyeth Nutrition and its principals.