Praise Your Children For Working Hard, Not For Their Intelligence

    By IvyTies
    Praise Your Children For Working Hard, Not For Their Intelligence

    Imagine you are a parent and your child does very well in an exam. What will you say to her when you see the exam results? If you are like most parents, you will probably praise your child’s intelligence, like, “Wow, you are so intelligent!” An alternate way to praise your child would be to emphasize her hard work, such as by saying, “Wow, you must have studied really hard for the exam!”

    Both these praises, praising your child’s intelligence and praising their hard work, seem very similar, right? But the next time you catch yourself praising your child’s intelligence, hold your words back.

    Research by Professors Claudia Mueller and Carol Dweck at Stanford University shows that after being praised for their intelligence, children develop a sense of complacency,a feeling that “I am really good.” So when they encounter a difficult subject in school or college, which will happen to everyone at some point, their sense of themselves as being very smart and intelligence gets shattered. Such students would then say, “This is a stupid subject, I don’t need to study it.”

    But when children are praised for their hard work, they get a sense that they can do well in anything provided they continue their hard work. So when they encounter a difficult subject, they tell themselves, “I just need to work harder here.” Such students continue mastering difficult topics and succeeding.

    So the next time a child or a student or a friend does well, say “You worked really hard!”