Oh my goodness, our son is a risk-taker! Rocky is a tornado in comparison to our first child, who is calm, focused, meticulous, and neat. As he travels across a room, he bulldozes over obstacles in his way – sometimes tripping, sometimes falling flat on his face – but he gets right back up and continues going. He enjoys having his swings pushed high and fast, as well as being flipped upside down and whizzed around.
He delights enjoys smashing toys together. Rocky is an adventurer. He’s inquisitive, motivated, and willing to take risks.
I strongly believe in encouraging children to take risks, both physically and mentally. With my daughter, this has been difficult. She’s four now, and she’s lot more willing to try something new and go outside of her comfort zone. But she often need only a little hand holding or nudge to get her going. Don’t we all, sometimes?
Risk taking is an important part of childhood – it’s the ability to let go of dad’s hand and take those first independent steps, it’s walking up to a new kid in a playground and saying ‘hi’, it’ s trying that weird dinner that mum and dad have served up tonight and it’s creating artwork without fear of doing it ‘wrong’.
I must be honest. Hubby and I are not natural risk takers. We both like to stay in the safe zone throughout life, stable jobs, stable home, stable family. It’s taken us a while to settle into our role as parents and be more comfortable with encouraging our kids to have a go when they’re out of their comfort zone, with choosing the right time to let them fall and pick themselves up.
How can you encourage your child to take risk?
Children become more confident, persistent, and resilient as they actually experience trial and error and cause and effect. Evaluating problems and deciding on a plan of action helps to improve decision-making abilities. Taking chances and excelling might inspire youngsters to strive for greater accomplishments. Failing may lead to the exploration of new ideas and the discovery of own skills and limitations. Children may overcome their concerns and learn new abilities in this manner.
When a youngster is unwilling to take chances, one of the consequences is that they are unwilling to work hard for something that they may fail at. As a result, when a child is afraid of failing, he or she may decide not to attempt at all. Instead of concentrating on the final result, such as winning a game or performing well on a test, you should concentrate on the effort that they put out to educate them better. A youngster will rapidly learn that the trip is vital and that failure is acceptable in this manner.
Allow kids to enjoy a feeling of autonomy while being near by. Encourage your children to consider danger even when they are in a secure place. Children do not always want to be watched. Look for ways to give them the impression that they are alone or out of sight. Allow them to play independently while being near by. If your kid is heading to school for the first time, pause at the door and tell them they may go in right away or wait a few minutes before going in.
It is also critical to assist risk-averse children in recognizing their own growth and improvement. This might imply presenting them with lesser, easier obstacles until they gain confidence. The message should be sent from both home and school that it is OK not to be able to accomplish anything right immediately.
Read also: Prepping Our Kids to Leave the Nest
Why do teenagers take risks?
For a variety of reasons, teenagers engage in dangerous behavior.If we can figure out which of these is at work, we will be better positioned to manage risk. The pleasure of dangerous activities is one of the key reasons young people engage in them. Doing something you know you shouldn’t do may cause an adrenaline spike, providing the individual a thrill of exhilaration before, during, and after taking a risk.
If your youngster seeks thrills and takes risks, consider channeling this energy into safe and beneficial hobbies such as rock climbing, martial arts, canoeing, or mountain biking. Some teens may like the “rush” of performing in theater or creative arts. Another method is to allow your kid some autonomy and independence so that they may test themselves and explore without doing something antisocial or unlawful.
Risk-taking in moderation is a good experience. It has the potential for failure, but it is also gratifying and generally safe. Sporting activities, artistic & creative ability, volunteer activities, travelling, meeting new friends, or competing are all wonderful healthy risks to promote in youth. Driving too fast, texting or chatting on the phone while driving, unprotected sex, smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, shoplifting, gang participation, or disordered eating are all examples of unhealthy risk-taking behavior.
It is common for teenagers to distance themselves from their parents. However, you may want to expose your adolescent to other adults and older children who may be a positive influence on him.A mentor is someone your adolescent can look up to, such as a relative, a sports or music instructor, or an older youngster who struggles with learning and attention. Having a mentor helps reduce a teen’s proclivity to overuse alcohol and drugs.