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Building the Tenets of Perseverance

Perseverance and Grit are virtues which are going to come to forefront during this Pandemic for our younger generation. Being isolated in a hospital with my younger son, I feared for his mental state and started researching onstudies done to imbibe grit and tenacity among children. I was determined to make sure that both him and myself come out of that situation spiritually and morally stronger. In the coming year , our kids are going to stay at home, going through  on-line classes and coping up in their unique ways to stay afloat in the grown –up`s moral  world. We need to think this up.

How do we raise resilient kids? How to increase their grit quotient? Will they give up when they see others giving up? Can they learn to appreciate sunshine even in the darkest of days?

Perseverance is a virtue to keep engaged in things you are good in or are enjoying doing, even when we encounter obstacles or setbacks.  In the Values in Action Inventory of Strengths, Perseverance is defined as ``finishing what one starts; taking pleasure in completing tasks:  Being fueled by passion, there is purposefulness and one-mindedness along with discipline to sustain effort. When a child develops the ability delay gratification and self-regulate she would be showing the traits of grit.  Perseverance plus passion equals to grit. No matter what the ranking of one`s birth, everyone has to face challenges which one has to push through. The ability to withstand the trials and navigate our way out is what perseverance is all about. A child trying to learn a musical instrument, or a form of dance, or master a song in the best of his abilities, he is trying to manifest the quality of grit.  Playing with Lego toys or Smartivity kind of toys could also demonstrate his achievable performance and attention span. Numerous studies have revealed that children with grit   are more likely to succeed than kids who lack it. The happy news is grit can be learned. 

According to Angela Duckworth, Author of Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance ( 2016) , four essential components are needed to grow grit:


Interest     :   Practice      :       Purpose      :       Hope


Interest: Curiosity is one of the basic motivator of humans and we would do well to tap it in our kids to make them stick to their interests. If history is their calling, taking them to various museums, real as well as virtual, showing them coins, flags of different countries, showing them animated videos of maps of different countries could be indulged in recreational times.  Exploring their passions would be more helpful in making learning more child-centric.

Practice: By practicing deliberately we are making them have an opportunity for expertise as well as make the activity seem effortless which results in optimum flow of happiness.  While improving their dexterity as well as confidence they can be a great chef or a baker.  Activities like making delicious drinks and mocktails can give them a high.

Purpose makes them see the bigger picture and be a more productive member of society.  Their self-projection of being a contributive entity would add on to their positive self-worth, along with teaching them group roles and team spirit. A kid trying to mobilize resources for charity aid could see goodness in her effort by trying to accumulate money for some noble cause. We start seeing ourselves as a catalyst by shifting from being opinionated to putting in efforts to bring about a change. They may start seeing themselves as a key component in making this world a better place, fostering optimism and happiness.

Hopehelps in staying positive and believing in sunshine no matter what. Rituals like gratitude journals, putting up a picture which they can bless every day, having pictures of their religious role models can go a long way in tapping their hope and faith. 

Thus we see resilient kids are products of optimistic and giver parents who are trying to give intellectually, emotionally, morally and financially in our own ways.  Success is not too far off for people who try.  

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