Any boy can rise to a challenge. If your son views the challenge as something to overcome and conquer, rather than a setback, he is more likely to develop resourcefulness and resilience. Some boys may find that the uncertainty and difficulties of adolescence will affect their motivation and approach to challenges – this can mean that they do not relish the opportunity to prove themselves. Defeating a challenge will not only help your son to grow in character but will help to gain motivation for the next challenge he will inevitably face.
Here are six tips for encouraging boys to embrace challenges:
1. Change your son’s perspective on challenges
If your son sees a challenge as something to be feared, he is less likely to attempt to face it. Having a positive attitude towards a challenge will greatly affect his willingness to put effort into overcoming the challenge. If your son can link positive outcomes with his efforts now, he will be more likely to find the motivation to embrace the next challenge at hand.
2. Help your son realise that a challenge is an opportunity to learn and grow
If your son can see challenges as a learning opportunity then his attitude will be vastly different. He will be more likely to approach the challenge positively and apply more effort, dedication and resourcefulness to overcome it.
3. Ensure your son understands that challenges can be uncomfortable
A challenge isn’t supposed to be easy. It is likely your son will need to leave his comfort zone and experience new things. We often encounter more growth when we are outside our comfort zones, when we are being challenged to do something we’ve not done before. Explain to your son the importance of stepping out of your comfort zone, and reassure him that it is an opportunity to grow.
4. Make a plan
Ensure your son creates a plan to navigate his way through the challenge ahead, whether it be a school assignment, sporting competition or simply cooking a meal for the family. Encourage him to set goals and to ask for help if he needs it. Having a plan through the challenge will give your son a structure to follow which will not only help track his progress but encourage him to keep on going. Taking educated risks will also help him push his boundaries and grow as person. This doesn’t necessarily mean diving headfirst into an opposition rugby player twice his size, but might require training harder or trying a new strategy.
5. Start small
Start with small challenges and build to more difficult challenges over time once he has gained experience. With experience comes increased confidence in his own abilities, greater motivation and willingness to put in effort to reap the reward.
Unsurprisingly, practising something helps you improve. As your son faces more challenges, he will gain experience and skills, which will help him tackle the next challenge he faces.
With the right words of encouragement and direction, you can help your son approach challenges in a more positive way. By allowing him the freedom to learn and try new things, you are setting him up with coping mechanisms to deal with the wide range of challenges your son will inevitably encounter in life.
For over a hundred years Trinity Grammar School has educated boys in mind, body and spirit. Fuelled by a pastorally aware culture with exceptionally high levels of individual student attention, we aim to know, understand and nurture every student to help them realise their potential, passion and purpose in life.
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