To subscribe to ExchangeEveryDay, a free daily e-newsletter, go to


An Authentic Life Needs Challenge

Today - All Fool’s Day - is a day that for centuries had been associated with high spirits and merriment. It’s a perfect day for us to remember the importance of lightening up.
Sarah Ban Breathnach

“We want durable, resilient, sensible children who grow up to become durable, resilient, sensible adults. If we jump in at every sign of danger, or have the goal of eliminating every chance of a hurt, loss, or injury, we are doing the development of that child an injustice.”

So writes Rusty Keeler in his inspiring new book, Adventures in Risky Play.

In a Psychology Today article, Stephen Joseph, PhD. writes about the value of challenge for all human beings:

“To lead an authentic life, we need to take on new challenges that stretch us and give us more opportunities to be ourselves. It is not that the authentic person does not feel the same fear; rather, they are simply more willing to face their fear.”

Rusty Keeler explains how becoming this kind of authentic person begins in childhood: “We are cutting out perhaps the most important aspect of growing up healthy and safe: coming in contact with risk, assessing it, and making one’s own decisions about how to proceed, how to be safe. This can only truly come from experience and knowing who you are and what you can handle; and what you don’t want to handle and would rather say ‘no’ to. This is the very definition of an empowered and self-aware child.”

For more information about Exchange's magazine, books, and other products pertaining to ECE, go to

© 2005 Child Care Information Exchange - All Rights Reserved | Contact Us | Return to Site