Unfortunately, like all my peers, I was in a school curriculum that created the illusion that our world would always remain the same. And if anything changes, it’s fashion.
We were taught those subjects and skills that were necessary for the professions that existed in the 80s of the last century. As you can imagine, for the 2000s, this is already the last century.
It seemed that we were really being prepared for a new life. No one could even imagine how much the world would change in 20 years.
Imagine the early 1980s: personal computers were just invented, faxes were considered the most advanced means of communication, and science fiction writers wrote about the Internet in the form in which we know it in their works.
We could not even imagine what the coming world was preparing for us.
And this is not the saddest thing. We still can’t imagine it. Even after several decades. And we never can. Our world is changing so rapidly. Therefore, predicting the future and teaching children at school in accordance with our forecasts is far from the wisest decision.
How then can we prepare our children for life in a rapidly changing world? Very simple: teach them to quickly adapt to change. That is, to prepare for absolutely everything, and not for something specific.
Let’s talk about the life skills that children should be taught to prepare them for life in such a changing future.
1. Ask questions.
What is our goal in teaching children? First of all, so that they learn to independently acquire knowledge, search for information, check it, and come to certain conclusions and conclusions.
At the same time, we do not teach them anything ready. Because if they succeed, then in the future we will not have to teach them anything – they can handle it themselves.
And the very first step in this direction is to learn how to ask questions. Fortunately, in children, this comes naturally and is not difficult. Unlike us adults, who are often afraid to look stupid and cling to their old ideas and knowledge like ticks.
Accordingly, we can only encourage children to ask questions and do it as often as possible. The best way to teach them this art is to simulate situations. For example, you are confronting your child with something new and incomprehensible. Ask questions and explore all possible answers.
When a son or daughter asks questions, always praise and encourage, and do not dismiss, and even more so – do not ridicule (you have no idea how many adults kill the desire to ask anything in their children).
2. Solve problems.
If a child learns the art of problem solving, any profession, in any industry, will be up to him. Even in one that doesn’t exist today.
A new job always scares people, although if you think about it, it’s just another problem that just needs to be solved. New skills and abilities, new environment, new conditions… all these are just new problems that have to be solved.
Teach your children to solve problems by modeling different situations. Come together to some common denominator. After that, offer to solve some problem for the baby on their own.
Start with the simplest ones and gradually move on to the more complex ones. Do not immediately run to solve problems instead of your child. Let him fiddle with them for days, or even months, trying different options.
You have no idea how happy he will be when he finally finds a solution! Be sure to compliment him!
Over time, he will develop a firm confidence in his ability to solve problems. Nothing will be impossible for him!
3. Work on projects.
As an online entrepreneur, I know very well that my work is a series of very different projects. Sometimes they are related, sometimes they are completely different, sometimes they are large, sometimes they are very tiny (as a rule, they represent a whole group of small projects). Also, I am sure that there is no such project that I could not complete. After all, there are hundreds of successfully completed ones, which I am really proud of.
For example, this material is already a project. The published book is also a successful project. Selling a book is another project.
Work on projects with your child, let him learn to work in a team. Over time, invite him to do something on his own. Each time, more and more.
After a while, he will feel so confident that he can safely take on any project. In this way, his training will become just a series of projects.
4. Work with passion!
Do you know what drives me when I go to my goal? No, not self-discipline and willpower. And not extrinsic motivation. And not a dream of awards or money. Exceptional passion!
Help your child find what interests him most, help him enjoy working on what he is really interested in. In other words: “Light a fire in him!”
Do not criticize, do not ridicule his interests – this is the only way to inspire and encourage the child. And do not turn everything into a joke or a farce.
The kid, first of all, should be interested! He must also know that his work will benefit.
5. Be self-reliant and independent.
Children should be taught a very important thing – to do everything on their own, to be able to insist on their own, not to depend on someone else’s opinion or assessment. Of course, it doesn’t come right away. But over time, completely.
Gradually encourage your baby to complete tasks completely independently. Show how they do it by creating different situations. First help, then – do so less and less.
Our task is to reach the level when the child will be confident to work on something on their own, make mistakes and correct them.
As soon as children learn to be independent, they will understand that they do not need a teacher, parents, or boss to tell them what to do and how to do it.
Only in this way will children grow up as free people who are able to manage themselves and decide in which direction to move in order to achieve their goal.
6. Be happy and self-sufficient.
Many parents indulge and fulfill the desires of their children, constantly patronize them. Thus, adults send a signal: “Baby, you can only be happy by relying on someone.”
As a result, a child grows up who has no idea how to make himself happy. Therefore, he immediately gets a girlfriend (boyfriend) and friends. If this does not work out, he finds happiness and solace in shopping, food, video games, social networks and more.
But if a child knows from an early age that he can be happy on his own (while playing, reading or even just dreaming), then he acquires one of the most valuable skills for life.
Allow your children to be on their own from an early age. Get rid of your overprotection. Designate a time (for example, in the evening) when all family members spend time alone.
7. The ability to sympathize.
This skill is one of the most important. First of all, it is necessary for us to be able to work successfully and effectively in a team – with other people. Also in order to take care of others, to find happiness in making others happy.
Compassion can be taught. To do this, it is necessary to explain to the child what others feel, how they need our support and help.
By the way, your example is also important: show compassion for your baby and other people.
Ask him how he feels, what he would like, how to help him. In each case, try to show how you can ease the suffering of others, bring someone joy and happiness. Emphasize that he will be happier as a result.
8. Have tolerance.
As a rule, we grow up in some kind of environment where everyone looks at the world approximately the same way. Therefore, when we come into contact with those who are “different” from us, it causes shock, fear, irritation and rejection.
Explain to the child from early childhood that all people are very different. They differ both in race, and in sexual orientation, and in psychological (and even mental) characteristics.
Emphasize that “difference” is not only normal, but just great. This is what makes our life so beautiful.
9. Do not be afraid of change and change.
I am more than sure that this skill will be the most defining when our children grow up. After all, the world is changing at a breakneck pace! Therefore, skills such as the ability to accept changes and do it instantly, to cope with new challenges, to navigate in the flow of everything new and unknown come to the fore. This will help them to always remain competitive and not get lost in the flow of change.
I am still developing this skill in myself. More than once I was convinced that it was he who helped me survive when those who rejected the changes broke down, they were afraid to deviate even a step from the previously written plans and goals. I learned to adapt to any “landscape”, and this was and remains a big plus.
But in order to survive in the modern world, not only flexibility and the ability to adapt to a new reality are important. You also need toughness! Again, this skill can be developed by modeling various situations with the child.
Show him at the earliest opportunity that change is okay. And also that this is a wonderful opportunity to use opportunities for growth that were not there before. After all, life is an adventure, and more often than not, things don’t go the way we plan and expect. This is the magic of change!
We do not know what our children will become when they grow up. Perhaps today such professions do not even exist. Accordingly, we cannot give all the necessary knowledge, because many of them simply do not exist today. But we can prepare children so that in the future they will be able to adapt to any changes, master any skills, and confidently solve the most difficult problems.
And in 20 years they will tell us only one thing: “Thank you!”
Based on articles by psychologist Leo Babauta