Developing Mental Toughness In Young People – Approaches to Achievement, Well-being and Positive Behaviour
By Doug Strycharczyk and Peter Clough
Published by Karnac Books
The book’s goal is to describe the concept of ‘Mental Toughness’ in such a way that the reader understands the concept and understands how it applies to the development of young people, whether they are in education or engage in extra-curricular activity. Such understanding is particularly important in the context of change and the challenge of preparing to live and work in a fast moving and fast changing world.
A number of initiatives have recently emerged which all have the same goal – to prepare young people for life in a world that demands resilience, confidence, grit, tenacity and commitment in addition to vocational and academic skills. Possible the most important of these is Mental Toughness which, arguably, embraces most, if not all, of the other initiatives in producing the most comprehensive and enduring approach.
Developing Mental Toughness in Young People is a fantastic collection of work edited by Doug Strycharczyk and Peter Clough. The topic of mental toughness is examined in immense detail. The authors have espoused the benefits of the mental toughness questionnaire for young people to enable them to achieve success in personal and professional life. The four C’s model of the mental toughness questionnaire MTQ48 – Control, Commitment, Challenge, and Confidence – provides a way of successfully managing the rapid pace of change in our world and increases feelings of self-efficacy and pride in what can be achieved using a performance measure. This is an ideal read particularly for school leaders, academic professionals, and, indeed, anyone who seeks to maximise their own potential and the potential of others. It encourages everyone to be “the best they can be” and embrace challenge, change, and opportunity. The struggle to work harder and smarter has not been addressed so profoundly anywhere else than within the pages of this superb book.
Diane Estelle Nugent, BEd, MEd, (PQH:NI), Past-President , Ulster Teachers’ Union, N. Ireland
This book is an essential part of the curriculum for anyone concerned with the wellbeing and potential of young people. It is equally applicable in formal and informal education settings such as youth work and youth justice. At this time of high competition for resources, it is ever more important to be able to demonstrate impact and show that interventions are effective. Key to this is selecting the right intervention in the first place. In this regard, the authors set out a coherent argument for the fundamental importance of understanding the mindset of the young and where they are on the spectrum between mental toughness and mental sensitivity.
Dr. Terry Ryall, former Chief Executive at vInspired, past Chief Executive , Girlguiding