We all want the best for our children and with that comes the feeling that we need to be there to hover around them, solving all their problems.
The truth of the matter is, that if we are there hovering all the time, stepping in and making all the decisions for them, and fighting their battles every step of the way, we are doing them a disservice.
We all have good intentions and want to protect our children from stress or failure, but the effects of doing this can be catastrophic in the long run.
This is when we start seeing our children fall apart when something doesn’t go exactly their way.
If we remove healthy, normal conflicts and experiences from our children’s lives, fix everything for them, and don’t teach them how to solve problems on their own, chances are they will have larger reactions to small disturbances.
What does that mean?
That means that when they drop their crackers on the floor, the world will seemingly be coming to an end.
HOW TO TEACH YOUR CHILD TO SOLVE PROBLEMS ON THEIR OWN
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The fine line between standing up for your kids and standing in the way of their independence isn’t always clear. We need to be sure that we are giving our children their own voice.
You can help your children build their problem-solving skills by having an accepting and responsive attitude.
ALLOW YOUR CHILD TO CHOOSE ACTIVITIES
Set aside time every day for kids to choose activities based on their developmental levels and ability. Encouraging free play can create limitless chances for your children to pinpoint and solve problems.
FOLLOW THEIR LEAD
Support problem-solving efforts by watching your children’s dilemmas and interaction.
BOLSTER YOUR CHILD’S SOLUTION
When your child comes up with a solution to a problem on their own, let them know that their efforts and ideas are admired.
EXTEND PROBLEM-SOLVING & CREATIVE THINKING
A great way to help your child identify the issue they are attempting to solve and find new ways to solve it is to ask open-ended questions about their activities.
To nurture your children and help them develop into problem solvers, you must see yourself as having 4 different roles:
- Facilitator – to help them navigate the right from wrong.
- Observer – to sit back and see how they handle different types of situations and problems
- Supporter – letting them know that you are there in case they need someone to back them up or help them with a problem bigger than they can handle.
- Model – someone that they can watch to know how to react to different problems in their life.
The most important thing is that we allow our children to freedom to find their own solutions to the problems they face.
If your child likes playing games, try a problem-solving game to help get their creative problem-solving juices flowing.
It is ok to support our children but doing everything for them will only lead to instability, a lack of trust in their decision-making skills and irresponsibility.
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