Resilient Minds, Bright Futures: Empowering Children to Thrive in Life

May 14, 2024 | First Person

By Helen Panos of Dynamis Learning and NAWBO Atlanta

What is resilience and how can we empower our youth to thrive in society? Resilience is defined as the capacity to withstand or to recover quickly from difficulties. It’s the ability to “bounce back” from hardships—something we likely know well as women business owners.

Some people may not think that resilience can be taught, but the good news is that it’s a mental muscle. We have the capability of shaping our resilience and increasing it over time. For this reason, it’s important that we as adults, parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles help children foster this trait via their strengths and support systems. This is what will help our children in society overcome challenges and work through difficult problems as they encounter adversity in their lives.

Our youth is being constantly bombarded with emotional situations, whether it be from within family or outside distractions. Having the ability to overcome the effects of these things is what will make a child more resilient. The goal is not to keep children from experiencing the disappointments in life, but to foster skills that can be used when a difficult situation arises.

I’d like to share five practical strategies for women entrepreneurs who are caregivers to children or even just within their support systems that can help empower and encourage them to thrive in our world regardless of the roadblocks:

  • Teach kids from a young age how to follow a daily routine – Structure is very important in this world, especially when it comes to young children. Today, parents have a hard time following a routine due to their busy schedules. Routines typically calm the mind, which helps children to understand when it’s time to work versus when it’s time to have fun.
  • Take breaks when needed – This not only goes for adults, but for children as well. Adults modeling the fact that they take breaks throughout the day is a good thing for kids to see; otherwise, they would not understand the importance of breaks. Children today are very exposed to the news, online information and other means of communication. It’s important to discuss the benefits of taking breaks with kids. Once they understand it, any anxiety that may start to creep up will disappear.
  • Teach self-care to children – Kids are never too young to validate self-care. It’s important that kids understand how eating properly, getting exercise and good sleep affects how they function. Every child also needs fun time as this fosters a well-balanced life and consequently allows a child to more efficiently handle stressful situations, crises and trauma.
  • Connecting with people – This is something we have to teach kids from very young as the world needs empathy. Listening is something that is hard to do with all the noise in our world, but it’s a good skill to have and develop. A connection can also include strengthening family ties as family is usually a child’s #1 support group. This, in turn, builds resilience.
  • Setting goals and meeting them – My favorite thing to have kids do is set two to three goals per school semester depending on their age. Younger kids can set two goals and then by 6th grade set three. There is something powerful about setting goals and working toward meeting them. Trying to meet goals almost always brings about challenges. Knowing who can help get you through the hurdles on the way to reaching goals is important. Also being aware of challenges that can interfere with goals is what helps children strengthen their resilience skills. A reward for achieving the accomplishment circles back to self-care in many cases. As you can see, this is a full circle and powerful steps to becoming resilient.

Sitting down with the children you care for or support in your life to discuss coping mechanisms as they relate to everyday stresses is important. As the adult, it’s a perfect time to show the child how you, yourself, cope with challenges at the office and/or in life. Letting children know there is not one way to deal with a situation is also powerful.

Another important aspect to point out about resilience is that how you build the skill is not necessarily how your neighbor or a relative may do it. There are many situations, challenges and solutions to be found. The most important thing is to position a child in scenarios where they learn to solve problems. This is very valuable in strengthening the child’s motivation, and consequently, it will make their life easier as they face uncertainties. We can all agree on one endgame and that is raising strong healthy children who can lead the world and solve problems with ease.

About the Author…
Helen Panos, a member of NAWBO Atlanta, is the founder of Dynamis Learning, a K-12 Tutoring/SAT/ACT Prep company that provides personalized support and solutions for academic success. Her company is passionate about helping all kids thrive in their education, whether that’s assisting those who are struggling or those who want to advance in level. The company is virtual, so her various tutors are able to help children nationwide. You can follow Helen’s podcast on Spotify at Smart Parents Successful Students. She provides an abundance of value to parents via guests and herself. Her website is

Skip to content