Adaptability as a Parent

By Danny Huerta

The ability to adjust and respond with flexibility and optimism is a lifeline to the struggling family. Learn how adaptability is one of the seven traits of effective parenting.

According to a study published by the American Psychological Association in 2014, millennials are the most stressed out generation. Gen Xers run a close second. 

Stress is an inevitable part of our life as parents. Our children have unexpected injuries, illnesses, issues, heartaches, and dramas. Add that to the stress parents feel from marriage, work, and finances. The ability to adjust and respond with flexibility and optimism is a lifeline to the struggling family.

Learning to adapt in the face of adversity is different from parenting, but the overall character trait is the same.

Related Content: Take our free 7 Traits of Effective Parenting Assessment to see where you rank in the area of adaptability.

With the trait of adaptability, we can be prepared to respond to the inevitable stress, demands, and pressures that come with parenting.

We are living in a generation of distractions. Technology continues to expand and demand more of our attention, while activities, tuitions and sports clubs seem to multiply. Adaptability allows us to sift through all of this without losing our minds. You are able to create calmness for your family in the middle of chaos. Overall, adaptability not only has benefits to your sanity, but it will also help your family by teaching your children:

How to handle adversity and the unexpected

Children learn to adjust when life throws them curveballs. They learn healthy ways to handle difficulties in life.

How to handle stress while caring for others and themselves

Children learn that stress is inevitable and difficult, yet manageable. They learn ideas and skills for taking care of themselves when there are a lot of demands while maintaining connections and relationships.

To have a flexible mindset

Children learn to see the bright side of things. They see circumstances in life as opportunities for growth, resets, or strengthening. They are able to quickly move out of a victim mentality and into a hopeful perspective.

To let things go

They learn the need to forgive, grieve, and press forward with optimism and flexibility. Children learn to see what they own in life and what they don’t own when it comes to decisions and emotions.

To look at the big picture

Children learn to see beyond the immediate moment. They learn to look at the bigger picture for greater understanding and wisdom about how to respond instead of reacting.

Our brain is designed to constantly learn. In fact, sleep helps prepare our brain for what the next day has in store, consolidating what today has brought. Adaptability is about learning and adjusting. A family that learns adaptability is bendable, but not breakable. 

Copyright © 2017 by Focus on the Family






Character More Important Than Grades

A month into our marriage, I got pregnant! It was unplanned and we had no idea how to be parents. Nevertheless, we were overjoyed and Tristan was born on Easter Sunday in 2006. Raising a baby was challenging indeed and we wished we had a parenting manual to help us.

Read More >

Date Night Tips

You know dating your spouse is good for your marriage. It’s time to save the date! Do something fun together, just the two of you.

Read More >

Q&A: Waiting until 16 to date

My 14-year-old daughter tells us that all her friends are dating now and that waiting until she’s 16, like we did, is very “outdated.” We haven’t budged yet, but my wife and I are questioning if we’re being too strict. What do you think?

Read More >