4 Simple Steps to Teach Your Kids to See the Positive Side of a Negative Experience

06/15/2015 11:20 am ET | Updated Jun 15, 2016

Our brain gives more attention to negative experiences over positive ones because negative events pose a chance of danger. That is one of the reasons it is always hard to think positive when we are faced with some difficult problems in our job, school or life. However we can train ourselves and our kids to see the positive side of a negative experience. Negative experiences are unavoidable, but you can choose how you react to them. Learning the balance between the two is necessary.

Here are some difficult situations and tips that will help you get the best out of any problem you are facing. This will help your children, but you can use this situation to solve some of your problems too.

These days, children are often faced with bullies in school that make fun of them because they dress differently, because they wear glasses, because they are good at math and so on. Children don't really need to have a good reason to make fun of other children. Unfortunately, bullying is a common part of childhood and the only thing you can do is to deal with that. You as a parent can teach your child to control their response to those bullies.

Remember, you cannot control what other people think about you and what they say to you, but you can definitely control your response. Instead of letting a person upset you, say to yourself you are in control and don't let other people make you feel inferior. Even when you finish school, you will often run into negative and hateful people in your life. Once you learn to recognize them more quickly, you can easily avoid them.

1. Response control: When someone snaps at you (with or without a reason), tell yourself you are in control of the situation by not snapping back. Remember only you can be the architect of your own character. By snapping back you are just becoming the same person that snapped at you. Often, it is negativity and not positivity that makes us think about strength and meaning.

2. Turn limitation to creativity: If sometimes in school or life you are short on important resources, just think creatively and see the situation as an opportunity to develop new ideas and practice creativity skills. You will be surprised with how your brain can think of amazing things when facing something negative.

3. Learning the lesson: You missed the deadline for something important like math homework? Try to see what made you miss the deadline and what you can learn from it. If you are familiar with the things that are holding you back, you have an opportunity to change them. If you didn't write your homework because your friends asked you to go out with them, next time tell them to wait an hour for you, so you can finish your homework first. You need to be serious about school if you want to be successful in life.

4. Change your thoughts: When you are feeling some negative emotions, change the way you are thinking of it. Instead of thinking you are so mad at your parents or teachers or friends; just think how you are noticing that you are having angry emotion towards them. Sounds like you are saying the same thing; but that simple change in perception helps you observe your negative emotion from a more objective standpoint.

As you can see, all these are situations we face every day and we can affect the outcome of those situation. You can choose how to react when something bad is happening to you. You can choose to see just the negative side of everything, but instead of that it will be much better for you if you learn to see a positive side of negative experiences every time. That skill will help you achieve success in school and beyond.

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