Why Failure is Good for Children

SYLVIA McCRORY     MAY 2020

That BITE of failure will teach you more than the BITE of success. –anonymous

We learn from failure not from success. –anonymous

Failure is hard for all of us. But failure is more important than success in many ways.  If we succeed every time, we attempt something, then we are not equipped when failures do happen. 

Most parents have a difficult time watching their children fail.  In fact, many parents go to great lengths to prevent their children from failing. In most cases, parents have a harder time seeing their children fail than children have failing. The drive in parents today, to protect their children and see their children successful comes with a price.  Children who are not allowed to fail, have a hard time coping when failure does come their way. 

The reality is parents are not preventing their children from failing, they are only sweeping it farther down the road.  Failures happen in all our lives at some time or other. 


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Failure Teaches Children...

When parents do not allow children to fail, they are teaching children the world is easy, that failures and disappointments happen to others, not to them.  Parents are trying to do the best thing for their children, but it harms them in several ways.

*Children grow up thinking they are not capable of failing.

*Children can begin to feel their parents love them because of their accomplishments, causing them to become insecure.  In a child’s mind they may feel their parents do not love them, they only love the number of prizes or trophies being won.

*Children do not learn the rewards of accomplishing something through hard work.

*Children do not learn to take chances.

*Children do not learn to believe in themselves if their ideas are considered different.

Important to remember:

Thomas Edison: His teachers said he was “too stupid to learn anything.” He made 1,000 unsuccessful attempts to invent the light bulb.

Albert Einstein: He didn’t speak until the age of four, he didn’t read until he was seven and was believed to be mentally handicapped.

Walt Disney: He was once told by an editor he ‘lacked imagination and had no good ideas.’

Quotes to ponder:

If you are scared to fail it implies that you are reluctant to learn. Failure teaches more lessons than success ever will. –Rajiv Chelladurai

Every failure will teach you something else about how to succeed. –Brit Morin

Success teaches you nothing – but failure teaches you resilience –Sarah Morgan

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