When dealt a lemon, why not make lemonade?

The world is either full of problems or opportunities. It most definately depends on your attitude.

There is certainly much to be gained through reframing problems in this way. It’s a core trait of many entrepreneurs. Sir Richard Branson was not happy with the airlines he travelled on way back in the day, so he bought a plane and started his own. We certainly wouldn’t have gotten Edisons invention of the light bulb if he had curled up and given up on the idea after failing at least a thousand times. He reframed each failure as a necessary step towards reaching his goal. What an individual!

Now what about our own children? Well mine fall into both camps. Our resident teenager falls to pieces when there is even a slight obstacle in her way which is not ideal. Any obstacle usually ends in a flood of tears and feelings of ‘dumbness’. We are having to work really hard with her at the moment as her ‘brick wall’ approach is holding her back.

In supporting her to feel in control when faced with a problem or set back, we have begun helping her learn about her brain and what it is capable of doing. Our brains are made up of three smaller brains. The reptilian brain, which deals with our fight or flight response; our emotional brain which our teenager usually responds from and the frontal cortex; our thinking brain. Then there is the left side of our brains helps us understand the words that we read, hear, rationalise and our creative right side which responds to music, sound and rhythm. It’s this side of the brain that helps to process the message behind the words. Both these sides are connected by the corpus callosum which allows both sides of the brain to communicate with each other. Explaining these aspects to our child and helping her understand how best learning can take place has given her some powerful self knowledge.

Image by vaXzine
Image by vaXzine

We also explained that during the teenage years, the frontal cortex almost shuts for renovations as there is some significant brain development happening. Again this was making sense to how she was feeling and also was helping me as a parent to step back and acknowledge the emotional pickle our teenager was getting herself into when faced with a challenge by supporting her with some breathing exercises aka strategies to calm and relax her and bring her into the thinking part of her brain at which point we would then gently work through the ‘opportunity’ together.

Using brain science here to assist, we have begun strengthening neural pathways in diverting our child away from her ‘brick wall’ when faced with a problem to the pathway of whats possible!

Have a great week!


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