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Learning To Win And Lose

By Jana Angeles 

Winning and losing is a part of life. As we have lived through our adulthood, we have seen many experiences that have contributed to our growth and development as people. It’s hard to look past our failures but it’s easy to appreciate our successes. One way or another, life comes with its ups and downs and we just have to learn how to accept them. Teaching our children the concept of winning and losing can be difficult to most parents as some of us may feel protective when awful things happen in our lives.

Some of us want to create a protective layer in our children’s lives but in most cases, it’s hard to hide our feelings of sadness and anger to our children. What we can do as parents is to teach our children how to be humble winners and to act gracefully when they become sore losers. So how can we teach our children the concept of winning and losing effectively?

Make It A Reality That Winning and Losing Happens

If your children currently participate in sport, they’re going to learn this sooner rather than later. Being part of a sport challenges them to understand the importance of teamwork and leadership, while also having a strong awareness of reality and what really happens. In sport, there are going to be times where your children will win and lose games. Even if your children do not play sport, they will still learn the concept of winning and losing through school and other aspects in their life.

It’s important to tell your children that it’s okay to lose sometimes. The reality is, once they’re older and lose that promotion within their job, you’ve got to teach them the right tools to move past it so they can win in the future. Teach them how to stay motivated and to also have a humbling presence when they successfully achieve a life goal of theirs.

Look At Their Idols And Point Out Their Failures

Does your child have people they idolise? Famous musician or actor? Even for us, we tend to idolise our favourite celebrities and romanticise their perfect lifestyle: earning fame and living in luxury – except we forget that these people have failed too. It’s naive to think that these people are winners because the only difference between us and them is their lifestyles. Teach your children that even famous people or people they idolise have gone through failures of their own. There is no such thing as a “quick-fix” in life because what would be the point of it if everything were so easy? Perfection is unattainable; teach them to embrace their flaws and mistakes.

Let Them Be Grateful For Their Own Talent

Children have unique abilities of their own and as they grow older, you’ll gain a strong awareness of them too. Learn to nurture your child’s talents early on and show them the importance of gratitude when it comes to appreciating their capabilities. In the future, they will be able to work on their own self-development and go through their wins and losses headstrong.

Be encouraging and never fall into the comparison trap. Comparing them to another child will discourage them and lower their self-esteem. Your actions and words are just as important so if your child shows you a piece of artwork they’ve made, wrote their own short story or perfectly found the solution to a math problem, showing a positive and engaging attitude will help them go far in life.

In today’s day and age, we’re expected to be perfect parents but people do not realise how damaging it can be to chase perfection. Some days we are winners and some days we are losers – that’s life. We need to show accountability and to also set an example for our children on handling our victories and failures. Constantly remind your children that they have a bright future ahead of them and to have faith when things get dark. If they believe that, they’re already one step ahead in the game of life.

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