Recently concerns have been expressed about some unintended consequences of the idea of resilience. Many people who have poor self-esteem and/or alternatively high expectations of themselves might needlessly suffer because they see themselves as not having the necessary resilience to cope and will try to just 'tough it out' . Adaptability gives more scope for alternatives. In a situation of bullying at work for example, options include reporting the offender or even leaving the job if no action is taken. This might mean accepting a number of changes in circumstances. Being able to accept the need to change and the ability to adapt is going to make that a lot easier.
Recently I have been reading a very interesting book called Factfulness, by Hans Rosling, Professor of Global Health. The byline – Ten Reasons We’re Wrong About the World and Why Things are Better than You Think – describes in a nutshell what the book is about. In it, Professor Rosling explains how everyone, from factory workers to university professors, United Nations officials, world bankers and aid agency workers, consistently view the world as a worse place than it is.
When asked about global trends in health, education, prosperity, child deaths, disasters and other indicators of wellbeing, we consistently get it wrong due to systematic biases in our thinking. The result is pessimism and a lot of needless worry. This is not to say there is nothing to be concerned about as there clearly are concerns about issues such as climate change, but when we over-emphasize the bad and ignore the improving, we open ourselves up to anxiety and defeatism.
The fourth factor I want to talk about here is something Vijay Yogendra called Innateness. Vijay felt that “Each child comes with a gift, and it is up to us (parents and teachers) to unwrap it!”
Innateness embraces a child’s talents and strengths but it is more than that. It is that unique quality a child possesses that when they can connect with it inwardly and express it outwardly, gives them a great sense of peace and contentment and fulfilment. Children’s special interests and excellence may not be accessible in their educational environment, so parents may need to look further afield to provide children with these enriching opportunities.