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#1331 Should We Protect Our Kids From Discomfort? - Harps & Tiff

The other night on the news, there was a story about banning the 'beep test' from schools because it made (some) kids nervous and uncomfortable. Fear of physical discomfort. And comparison. And embarrassment. And anxiety. And while I (kind-of) get it, I also thought about how all those things (discomfort, embarrassment, comparison, fear, anxiety) also exist in the spheres of academic performance, exams, social media, sporting performance, school friendships, social groups and lots more. And for grown-ups (us ex-children), these things are an unavoidable pert of the human experience. If we constantly shield our kids from discomfort in all its forms, are we protecting them or taking away an opportunity to develop resilience, understanding, confidence and personal power? Of course, "it depends" is the right answer and yes, there are a myriad of variables but nonetheless, it’s worth considering. As an ex-fat (obese) kid, I truly understand the aversion to beep tests but at the same time, I think we need to find a way to help prepare our kids for a reality beyond childhood, where mum and dad aren't there to constantly make things comfortable, convenient and safe; a practical reality where life doesn't care about an individual's feelings, fear, discomfort, embarrassment, anxiety or results. It's not an easy fix (of course) but it's probably worth a chat.