Happiness is a state of feeling joy and wonder. It may be a time of laughter and mirth, but it can also be a deep feeling of satisfaction and confidence.

In, Are the issues of millennials their own fault or are they caused by their parents?, we looked at the issues facing these young adults. While much has been said about who is to blame for their lack-luster behavior, the sobering fact is that they have the highest rate of depression and suicide.

I don’t know about you, but when I hear about a young person taking their own life, I think what could have been done to avoid it? What went wrong? Why aren’t they happy when they appear to have so many good things in their lives?

Building resilience

Resilience is the key. I wrote Astro is Down in the Dumps and developed the Resilience Warriors workshops to help young people discover what happiness is really about. This book and program are aimed at younger children aged 9 and up. I believe that if we can increase this age group’s resilience then they have a better chance of overcoming mental illness.

Can we help our grandchildren to be happier?
Can we help our grandchildren to be happier?

What is happiness and where does it come from?

I’m not talking about the type of happiness that comes from toys or gadgets or they type of confidence that comes from graduating from kindergarten. I don’t mean ‘gold star’ happiness or ‘it’s my birthday’ happiness either.

I am referring to a deeper character trait which allows someone to step back and say, “Oh no! This is awful, but it’s not the end of the world.”

Can we help our grandchildren to be happier?
Happy children at play

What can we grandparents do?

While it sounds complicated and theoretical there are practical things we can do to help our grandchild learn the true meaning of happiness.

Here are a few things you can do. For even more ideas please see – 10 ways to help build resilience in grandchildren

The keys to happiness comes from being confident enough to give something a go. With that in mind, give your grandchild task you know he or she can do well. This might be helping to carry the groceries or feeding the cat.

You could ask him or her to hold a piece of wood still while you hammer or saw it. What about giving them the duster and asking them to get rid of the dust on the bookshelf?

Obviously, you have a huge duty of care to keep them safe; you don’t need me to remind you of that. But, there are a whole host of things most children can do where they can prove to themselves that they have skills and can do things successfully.

Can we help our grandchildren to be happier?
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