Laugh at Yourself:
Parents often ask me what a good coping strategy is to help them and their children get through challenging moments. As simple as it may seem, the use of humor and the ability to laugh at ourselves rank high. Laughing at ourselves is very different from poking fun at someone else’s expense. It takes the edge off of living and puts everything in true perspective.

Release Perfection:
Humor and not taking ourselves so seriously are certainly ways to handle that driving need for perfectionism that can rattle you and your children time and again. You need to teach your kids to strive to be their best, but not to get hung up on being perfect. It can be an emotional blow when your child strives to be perfect and abysmally fails! Instead, make sure they know that you appreciate them as well as all their trials and successes. Encourage them to push ahead with determination and confidence without making themselves sick by not be able to be 100% perfect all the time. That effort for perfection is excruciating and can lead to failure and disappointment.

Coping Strategies:
As parents, we want to help our children move through life’s challenges safely and gracefully. Humor and laughter are powerful allies we can rely upon. They are organic and natural, inexpensive, built-in, and come with a lifetime guarantee. They can aid us in coping with stress, disappointment and the unforeseen calamity.

Your children need to have strategies that work to reduce stress and to handle whatever comes up. More often than not, many adults lack these important strategies that can help them cope effectively with life. Make sure that your kids are not the ones that are left out.

A Learned Response:
The ability to step back momentarily from an uncomfortable or difficult situation and laugh at ourselves is a skill that can be learned. And it’s not too late to teach your children ways to approach life that help them cope with whatever lemon comes their way.

There are times when despite our efforts and good intentions, the unpleasant situation rears up. Humor is not easy to summon when we are metaphorically up to eyebrows in sand and seaweed. However, if we instruct our children to recognize that each situation offers an opportunity for learning and growth they will be able to locate the pearl.

Optimism can be learned and can make all the difference in how we approach each challenge. We can change the way we think which in turn can change the way we feel. With an optimistic outlook, as unbelievable as it once seemed, you may be able to change the outcome.

Author's Bio: 

Known as the Success Doc, author and speaker, Dr. Jo Anne White,is a relationship, business & personal coach and therapist who taught in Temple University's Dept. of Education and Special Education for over fifteen years. Her expertise includes working effectievely with parents, couples and children and has developed seminars on Self Esteem, Creativity and Empowerment for women and children.