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Raising Kids Who Aren’t Fearful

According to the nightly news, the world is a dangerous place.  How can parents raise brave children in a world intoxicated by fear?
At NBC Camps, we aspire to educate parents to resist the natural inclination to parent from scarcity, fear and over-protection. We see the dangers of this method of parenting.  Sheltered children are often not any safer than non-sheltered children but they are significantly more afraid.

Raise Kids Who Aren't Afraid

Parenting Advice—Don’t create an unconscious scripting for fear.  Parents love to label. We do it usually when our children don’t behave in the way we would prefer and we excuse or blame or label them to help us navigate the discomfort. We see this ALL the time at camp.  For example, a coach will approach a younger sibling of an older child who is coming to camp. The sibling will turn away and hid by the parent. The embarrassed parent typically responds by:  A. The parent hides the child and speaks to the coach, “He’s always been really shy, not like my other kid who can’t wait to go to camp.”  B. The parent confronts the child and says angrily, “This man is talking to you, look him in the eyes right now.”  Both anger and coddling will produce unwanted results. 

A good way to handle this situation would be to say to the coach, “Thanks so much for reaching out to my son, we will be right back. Is there a good place to find you in about 5 minutes?”  Then gently take your child who responded shyly to a private and quiet place. Sometimes they can be hard to find, but you will get good at spotting these.  Next, you outline how you would like to see the child respond when someone greets him or her. Practice a few times.  Give lots of encouragement and praise your child for working hard.  After he or she has mastered it, say he or she is ready to try again. Have him or her shake the coach’s hand and say nice to meet you.  Praise your son or daughter for the willingness to face their challenge with courage. This will be great training for a fearless future.

Let you child experience new adventures. Going to an overnight camp is a perfect example of an important experience every child should have. This allows a student to have some modicum of independence and personal responsibility all within a very safe and structured environment ( assuming the camp program is like NBC Camps).  Research ways to allow your child to experience the world within a wise framework. Building confident and strong kids will help them meet potentially dangerous situations with greater acumen and strength. 

Discipline your desire to overreact.  Your emotions are felt by your children and their health and well being are connected to your level of interior health. If you are imbibing toxic news and creepy stories, you will naturally be ready to freak out or react too strongly in a moment of crisis. Your ability to remain calm, think calmly, act calmly and respond calmly in difficulty will be a huge asset to help your son or daughter when he or she faces crisis. The goal as a parent should be to raise up strong, confident, humble, amazing kids. Over-protection actually creates inept and unconfident kids in the face of danger.

About NBC Camps

NBC Camps offers intensive skill development training in basketball, volleyball and other sports. NBC stands for Nothing beats commitment and the dedication necessary to become your best. If you believe in the value of mental toughness, gratitude, resilience, tenacity, grit and leadership, NBC Camps would be a great fit.  Find out more about NBC Camps at www.nbccamps.com.

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