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Education, Parental Tips

Skills of the future or how to raise a successful individual

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The world does not stand still. Information, medical, space technologies are developing at an incredible pace. What seemed to be fiction only yesterday is today becoming a reality. Our world is evolving, so are we. New professions and new skills emerge and what we considered important and unshakable, suddenly becomes outdated.

People of the future, who are they? What professions will be in demand in 15-20 years? How to raise a child who will be successful in the future? You will find answers to these questions in this article.

Contents:

Professions of the future

In November 2017, McKinsey&Co in their article identified the most sought-for working sectors through to 2030 by evaluating important demographic and economic patterns and trends.

In the nearest future, according to the authors, the following experts will be in demand on the labor market:

  • healthcare providers;
  • professionals: engineers, scientists, and analysts;
  • IT professionals (computer engineers and specialists);
  • teachers;
  • managers and executives (not easily replaceable by machines).

In addition to that, other scholars suggest the emergence of new professions, such as cyber investigators, digital linguists, mind fitness trainers, emotion designers, and others, at first glance, completely ephemeral professions.

What skills and competencies should professionals in these areas possess?

The main features of a successful individual

To be successful in any of these areas, a person must possess a number of certain characteristics. Here are the 10 competencies of the future which will allow your child to become a sought-after professional:

  • ability to reason and analyze autonomously, without using a particular template; possession of critical thinking skills;
  • the ability to defend a point of view, even when representing a minority, and to put strong arguments forward;
  • resistance to stress, an adequate response to failures, the ability to draw the right conclusions from those failures;
  • communication skills, the ability to approach any person, with the use of an evaluation of their strengths and weaknesses;
  • an advanced level of emotional intelligence;
  • adaptability, quick response to changing conditions;
  • the ability to multitask and correctly plan actions;
  • the desire for development and personal growth;
  • mental and physical health, a positive attitude towards a healthy lifestyle;
  • ability to think ‘outside the box’ & creativity.

7 main mistakes made in the pursuit of raising a successful individual

An overload of ‘early development’ initiatives

Julie’s mother says: «As soon as my daughter turned three, I decided to concentrate on her development. I bring her to «Clever Baby» classes (they already started learning the alphabet there), I teach her Spanish myself, in the kindergarten, I signed her up for singing lessons. I also want her to start taking gymnastics lessons. Why not? That fosters child development».

The topic of early development has become popular amongst parents over the last decade. Many people think: the sooner a child begins developing, the higher his chances of becoming successful in the future. However, their opinion is not supported by neurophysiologists and psychologists. The former informs that the brain develops gradually, and three-year-old children are not ready to learn neither English nor the alphabet of any other language. The latter claim that in the pursuit of intellectual development, the emotional intelligence of the child suffers. In addition, overloading the nervous system can lead to frequent colds, sleep problems and enuresis.

A large amount of additional workload during the school

Peter’s mother says: «My child does not sit still after school: firstly, he goes to a chess class, then to the swimming lesson. We get back home at 9 pm, and the homework isn’t done yet, we sit there until midnight, doing it. However, my son recently became a little strange, he is nervous, he does not sleep well and his academic performance has worsened».

In addition to the topic of early development: those mothers and fathers who allowed their children to develop gradually and did not overload them at preschool age, compensate for that when children go to school. They sign up their child to various extracurricular classes starting from Year One, ignoring the fact that the process of adaptation to school has to take place prior to that. The child must get used to new responsibilities, new fellow students and teachers, and the very organization of school life. Otherwise, his brain will simply not manage to cope with such a large load.

It is better to decide collectively with the child what he is really good at, and where he would want to go after school, whilst reserving some time for homework.

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Excessive requirements

Jim’s mother says: «We have been memorizing William’s Wordsworth poem «I wandered lonely as a cloud» for the entire evening with my son. I told him to volunteer to go to the blackboard tomorrow and state it perfectly to get an A. The next day, Jim hands me his diary, and I find an F in it! He told me that he had forgotten the beginning of the poem, was too afraid to ask the teacher and said that he simply had not learned it».

Many parents mistakenly put excessive pressure and control over their children in the pursuit of getting good grades. As a result, the child, in order not to upset mom and dad, does not focus on the knowledge, but on getting good grades. Children of demanding parents often suffer from anxiety and low self-esteem.

Development as a response to parents’ ambitions

Sue’s mother says: «I’ve always dreamed of becoming a gymnast, so my daughter practices sports on a professional level. She does it without any major success, the coach is not happy with her at all, she suggests considering other sports. So much money was spent on it, but without any result. I constantly tell her that she’s just not trying hard enough».

How many children have become victims of unfulfilled parental dreams! Moms and dads, dreaming of seeing great artists, athletes or scientists in their children, forget about the actual achievements and capabilities of the child. This results in anger and disappointment for the son or daughter that «has not fulfilled expectations».

Drawing parallels with other children

Nicole’s mother confesses: «I never thought that my Nicole would be like that. My friend’s daughter already knows the alphabet, reads, and solves math problems. And my daughter hardly memorizes numbers! She will probably learn to read by Year 5».

Every child has its own pace of development and its own abilities. Some quickly learn to count, some start reading only by the age of 4, and some stun everyone with their musical abilities.

Do not compare your child with others. By doing this, you only harm his self-esteem and develop a sense of deficiency. Even if something does not work out for the child, you can always try to focus on his strengths.

A false expectation of quick results

Samuel’s father says: «I signed up my son for basketball. A month after, there was zero sign of progress. He only learned to hit the ball against the wall. I saw it and stopped taking him there. It turned out to be a waste of time and money».

Another common mistake made by the parents is their lack of readiness for the child to develop a new skill over time. Moms and dads expect that their child will learn everything on a whim, that teachers will constantly praise him and put him forward as an example.

Lack of self-sufficiency

Kate’s mother says: «I have some trouble with Kate! My daughter is 15 years old. I told her yesterday: «Kate, you are already grown up, it’s time to help your mother around the house,» she looked at and said, «Mom, you do everything yourself, why would you need my help?»

Parents, with their good intentions, try to protect their children from household chores, thereby limiting their opportunity to be independent and take responsibility for the outcomes of their actions. And then they wonder why the grown-up son or daughter is not willing to even wash the dishes. Remember: the more autonomous tasks the child has, the more confident he feels.

How to raise a child that will be successful in the future – tips for parents

  1. The first and main advice – the child will grow up successful and happy only in an atmosphere of love and trust. Accept the child with its weaknesses and particularities, give him love and support.
  2. Set an example for your son or daughter. You will never get to love to read a child, if your house does not have any books, and he only sees you using gadgets.
  3. Be interested in the everyday life of your child. Not what he ate for lunch or if he had a nap during the day, but what events took place in his life, what pleased him and what upset him. Ask with whom your child played today, and with whom, perhaps, he has had an argument.
  4. Teach your child to cope with failures without diminishing the extent of his worries: «I see that you’re upset that your favorite toy broke. When you calm down, we will figure out how to fix it together». A negative experience is experience necessary to fulfill future goals.
  5. Support the baby in taking on new activities, create favorable conditions for the child to self-evolve. To achieve this, it’s better not to present ready-made answers to the child, but to stimulate his thinking processes with the questions «Why do you think so?». Curiosity is the best motivation for gaining new knowledge.
  6. Accustom your child to a healthy lifestyle and to sports. It is always better to guide by example indeed.

Make it a rule to visit a new place in the city every week with your child. Explore it together and get acquainted with the architecture and landmarks.

How to help your child to succeed at school?

Without exception, all parents want their children to be academically successful at school, be friends with their classmates and be a source of pride for teachers. But can a modern school give a child all the necessary skills and competencies to ensure their successful future?

If you compare the teaching approach to mathematics in the UK and, for example, in Japan, interesting differences can be spotted. British students go through a new topic during the lesson, solve a problem, they are given a similar task for a small test, but with a different unknown piece of data. For homework, they receive a problem of the same type and solve it according to the algorithm learned during the lesson. In contrast, Japanese students, after learning a new topic in class, get a problem for homework which they must solve in several ways. The highest mark is given to the student who came up with the biggest number of ways to solve the problem.

This example points out the development of independence, critical thinking and the ability to defend a point of view, in students. Unfortunately, the UK education system cannot boast of such results, especially with the introduction of the standardized nationwide examination systems, such as the GCSE and A-levels.

If parents want to help their child succeed and ‘nail’ all the necessary skills during the process of schooling, they need to pay attention to the following arguments:

  • In pursuit of good grades, you can «accidentally» develop a «good student syndrome» in a child, which will cause a lot of issues for him in adulthood. Focus on the knowledge acquired by the child, and not on the grades in his school diary.
  • «The child does not want to learn» – the main concern expressed to the psychologist by parents of children of 10-16 years old. There is a reason for everything, and one needs to find their own reason, it could be an overly high workload of the child due to too many extracurricular classes, an insufficient contact with the teacher, bullying by classmates, a lack of the understanding of the subject or teenage love drama.
  • The psychologist Mikhail Labkovsky has a concrete opinion with regard to this matter: «Do not do homework with your child! It is equally unnecessary to pack his school bag! You will damage your relationship with the child, and the overall outcome will be negative».

It is important for parents to remember: the more areas of their child’s life become controlled by them, the less likely it would be for their son or daughter to display independence, and, consequently, succeed on their own and gain the necessary experience to ensure a successful future.

  • In case of conflicts with classmates and teachers, give your child the opportunity to resolve the unpleasant situation by himself. If the situation has become worse or bullying has started – at this point, you can get involved.

School is another step towards the successful future of your child. Try to ensure that these years are beneficial and are spent in safe conditions.

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Dear parents, please remember: the successful future of your child is in your hands. But here, as in medicine, the main principle is not to harm. Do not harm your child with too much advice, control, excessive expectations, and your own ambitions. Let him gain new knowledge, acquire new skills, and gain essential experience autonomously. He will become a happy and confident person, who will be bound to become successful in the future!

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