Children have to face many challenges as they grow. Some of them are much harder than others, but the real victory comes when kids exhibit courage and find a way to overcome these challenges.
In order to be able to show courage, kids need the support of their parents, teachers and extended family members. They should also be allowed to use their imagination and creativity in order for them to feel empowered by themselves. This article offers some ideas that parents can use to encourage their children’s courage from an early age.
What is Courage?
Courage is the willingness to confront unpleasant emotions like anger, danger, pain, uncertainty, etc. Courage doesn’t always mean an absence of fear or danger. Being courageous means facing threats despite being fearful. A courageous person takes tough calls or makes bold decisions that seem worth fighting for. They take calculated risks and fear to ensure that they are not overly confident and take the appropriate actions.
Kids build up courage as they grow older and become more mature. Courage becomes an essential asset for kids as they take up more challenges and risks. It gives kids the confidence to be themselves and risk their social status to stand up for others.
Why is Courage Important?
1. Develops Confidence
Courage helps in developing confidence. When you take action despite having fear, you prove to yourself that you can achieve your goals even if it feels impossible to do so. You overcame the things you are scared about. The things you were once scared to face don’t seem to faze you anymore. This increases your confidence for the better.
2. Personal Growth
Personal growth occurs when people come out of their comfort zone. You never get anywhere in life by playing it safe. When you take risks and succeed, you develop the confidence to try new things. If you fail, you at least get the confidence to try again. Either way, it paves the road to personal growth. Jumping out of the realm of complacency into brand new, uncharted territory is the job of a courageous person. Because of this, these people are constantly growing and learning.
3. Increased Chances of Success
No doubt that courageous people get more successful in life. They are risk-takers who do not miss opportunities to try something new and do not believe in playing it safe. You never know which door leads to success, and if kids are not taught to try new perspectives and won’t even know how many opportunities to succeed, they will miss out on it.
What Is the Difference Between Bravery and Courage?
Bravery and courage are usually considered together into one definition, but they are not. Bravery is more like a trait or an instinct. A brave person is a person who sees a dangerous situation and immediately reacts bravely without thinking.
Courage, on the other hand, is seeing a situation or a dangerous or scary experience and acting, even though you’re scared. It’s being terrified and unsure of yourself, but you persevere through the pain and the tough times.
Bravery is the ability to confront something painful or difficult or dangerous without any fear.
Courage, on the other hand, is the ability to confront something painful or difficult or dangerous despite any fear.
Bravery is more likely to be an expression of sheer strength.
Courage is undertaken with full awareness and fear.
When someone acts bravely, there is an element of giving up control. A person’s conscious mind shuts down, and they go into autopilot mode. This allows for bravery to take over.
When someone acts courageously, they know exactly what they’re getting themselves into. Even if it’s something that might be a painful or difficult situation.
It’s a quality, not a state of mind; it doesn’t need a cause to awaken it.
Unlike bravery, courage is driven by a cause; the courageous person believes that cause is worth standing up and fighting for, despite all the clear reasons not to.
Bravery tends to be more spontaneous.
Courage comes with a high degree of choice and forethought.
A kid being dared to touch a spider or any number of other activities that their peers may have dared them to do. If the kid chooses to do the given dare, he is brave.
A child on the playground who makes the conscious decision to defend another student and stand up to a bully, knowing the potential repercussions they may face. That’s what courage is.
How to Encourage Kids to Develop Their Inner Strength of Character
1. Create a Safe and a Loving Environment
It’s essential to create a safe and loving environment for children to develop their inner strength of character. They should be allowed to have open-minded discussions at homes and schools where they do not hesitate to speak their minds. Let them know that your love is consistent and dependable, not dependent on how they look, achieve or behave and that the limits and boundaries you set for them are set out of love to keep them safe and help them grow.
2. Keeping a Balance
Keep a balance. Be an authoritative parent who knows how to provide both love and boundaries. Keep the pressure off so your child can grow and learn without fear. Please help your child make friends and be happy in their own company. Balance courage with kindness, resilience with honesty.
3. Encourage them to Trust Themselves.
Teach them to trust themselves and formulate their solutions. They should develop a sense of courage and confidence and trust the answers they find themselves to their problems. Get them into the habit of believing themselves and trusting their gut instincts. Ingrain these ideas into your child so that they can encounter any situation and be optimistic about dealing with it. This will make them believe that they have the power inside them to rely on in difficult circumstances.
4. Teach them to Embrace Failure
Failures & disappointments are part & parcel of life. By focusing their attention on what went wrong and how they could fix it, kids with growth mindsets could turn failures into positive learning experiences. When your kid does fail at something, let them know you see how frustrated and disappointed they are. Then, you can make failing a teachable moment. Talk about what went wrong and how they might do things differently next time. It’s okay that things don’t always go our way.
It is very important to encourage your children’s courage. A child who is encouraged to be courageous will be able to face their fears and live life to the fullest. Also, check these inspiring quotes on fearlessness.