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Why Failure Is Okay


We want to protect our children — we don’t want them to feel pain or fail, because we want them to live happy and meaningful lives.

Alexandria, Louisiana-based licensed professional counselor Christy Pennison.
The Week

Check out this article written to inspire parents/caregivers to let children fail every once in a while.

We have so ingrained our minds in believing failure is not an option. Yet, it’s often the most successful individuals who have failed at one point in their lives. So, why do we teach our kids (often subconsciously) that failure is not ok?

At CMRC, we tout the benefits of learning through play. More often than not, people view this concept as assisting in academics and social skills. However, play can sometimes result in some form of failure. Whether a stack of blocks falls, the puzzle doesn’t quite fit together the way a child thinks it should, or a child can’t quite seem to hit every hopscotch block. Each of these examples is a form of failure–generally small in comparison, but still a failure (especially in a child’s eyes). If an adult comes along and “fixes” those failures, or berates that child for failing, what are they really being taught? Play should be a time when a child is free to fail without major life consequences. Play should be a safe area of their lives that allows for uninhibited use of imagination and creation. By allowing a child to fail during times of play, we are working to increase their motivation to try again, or try something new to make it work.

So, let’s encourage play, let’s not discourage failure, and in the end, we will have hopefully helped mold a child into a motivated and productive citizen–maybe one who will become the next big entrepreneur.


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