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Teaching Your Kids That It's Okay To Lose

It’s quite a common sight to see young children express frustration and anger or even throw tantrums when they lose, be it in physical activities, study projects or even games on their mobiles. That’s because we live in a society where winning is given much more importance than good sportsmanship. Even though children feel a sense of pride and control when they win, they must be taught that losing is an equally important part of life.

Losing is a more natural part of life than winning. But it is important that a child learns to lose gracefully, because it seldom comes naturally to them. This leaves many parents confused, as to how they should teach their children to lose gracefully. We have helped make the process easy for you. Simply go through the points mentioned below -

Competitiveness Is Okay. Being A Sore Loser Is Not

Parents must understand the difference between their child being competitive, and being a sore loser. A child can be extremely competitive, yet accept loss gracefully. Conversely, your child may show zero signs of competitiveness but when they lose, they do not take the loss very well.

Young children tend to express their emotions physically instead of verbally, which means you might witness a lot of shouting, crying or even kicking if they lose. Calmly, take the game away from your child so that they are removed from the negative situation. Once they have quieted down, talk to them in a soothing manner and ask them to tell you why they became so upset over a loss. End the talk by saying something positive like,”You did well today beta, and I’m sure that tomorrow when you play that game again, you will definitely be a stronger and better player. You have done such a good job today and that’s what matters.”

Provide Your Child With Opportunities To Lose.

In order to let your children view competitiveness as a positive trait, make them play progressively more complex games over an extended period of time. They will soon understand that they can’t always win, and that losing is a natural part of life.    

And even though it might seem tempting to let your child win at the games they play with you, avoid doing it all the time. Let them win a few games and let them lose some. And when they win genuinely, praise them. When they lose, encourage them to be a good sport.

Emphasize Good Sportsmanship.

This is in continuation of the previous point. Explain to them the importance of not being frustrated or not throwing a tantrum when they lose. Encourage them to say “congratulations” to the winner of the game, and mean it. You can lead by example and behave exactly as you want your child to behave.

Talk To Your Child About Why They Lost

Now this is not something that you have to do, but it would good nonetheless if you did. Teach them that losing is completely natural, and sometimes it depends on the other players being better skilled, while at other times, it’s nothing but dumb luck.

Always remind them that what matters is that they should give every activity their best shot. Once your child understands the reasoning behind losing, it helps make the process of losing a lot less emotional for them. 

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