Confidence is one of those crucial characteristics that every person must possess in order to achieve success in life. Children who are confident can deal with responsibilities and pressures much better than those who aren’t. So, what is the key to developing this all-important trait in your child?
Keep reading to find out.
At one glance building, child confidence seems like an enormous undertaking, but if you implement the research-based tips given below into your daily routine then you will have no problem doing it. In fact, once you get used to it it will even be fun!
Children can sense the attitude adults have towards them and that has a profound impact on the way they view themselves. It is important to show your child that even at times when they make mistakes they still have your love and support. Of course, constructive criticism is necessary but avoid criticizing them too harshly or shaming them because this may discourage them from even trying to tackle the task in the future.
Affirmation is basically positive self-talk. When faced with a difficult challenge many people (and especially children) tell themselves that they cannot overcome it. So it is important to have them say positive things out loud to boost their confidence. Some examples of these affirmations are "I can do hard things", "I am a problem solver", "I am on the right track", etc. Read more about positive psychology and its benefits.
All children have to do homework and some chores; that is a given. However, occasionally giving them 'special tasks' and allowing them to help you out makes them feel responsible, competent, and most important of all, useful. Just make sure it is an age-appropriate task that they can successfully perform. For example, you can ask them to help you carry a small shopping bag, or lay out the ingredients for a dish you are planning to cook for dinner.
A big chunk of children’s time is occupied by playing, and they take it seriously. When you join in and play with them it s tends them a subliminal message that whatever they are doing is important and worthy of your attention.
Allow your child to choose the activity and listen to them when they explain the rules of the game. This makes them feel in charge and accomplished.
When you are faced with a decision that affects your child ask for their opinion to show that you value their input. Not only will this build your child’s confidence but it will also show them that it is OK to ask for help sometimes and that facing some difficulty in life is not the end of the world; they can find their way out by seeking help from their loved ones.
One of the best ways to boost your child's self-confidence is by setting realistic goals and achieving them on a daily or weekly basis. A brief online search will help you find goal-setting printable sheets. These are simple, colorful timetables where they can write their daily goals and receive rewards for achieving them. You can reward your child with a colorful sticker for achieving each task and if they collect a predetermined number of stickers they get a bigger prize.
Being involved in theater classes will make your child come out of their shell and improve their self-confidence. Theater teaches people to speak with confidence in front of the audience and the imaginary scenarios push them outside of their comfort zone in a safe and fun way. If there are no theater classes available in the vicinity don’t worry. Your children and their friends are perfectly capable of staging a small performance of their own and presenting it to you and your friends (the audience).
Simply saying common phrases such as "good a job" or "well done" may not be enough when you’re trying to praise your child for something they did. When giving praise make sure to make it specific and focus on the effort that it took to achieve the result. For example, if they got an A on the test you can emphasize the amount of hard work and revision it took for them to get this mark.
One more great way to boost your child’s self-confidence is by letting them overhear you speaking about them in a positive manner when you are talking to one of your friends. Praising your child when you are talking to your friends all the while knowing that they are within the earshot will do wonders for their self-confidence.
Children, like all human beings, maybe skeptical when you praise them directly, however, if they hear you speaking about them in the best terms to your friends this will assure them of your sincerity.
Probably one of the worst things you can do for your child's self-confidence is comparing them to their classmates or siblings and asking questions such as "why can’t you behave like her or him?", or "why can’t you do that?"
These comparisons sow the seed of self-doubt. Instead, you may want to encourage your child to try harder and tell them that they are just as capable of achieving amazing things if they put their mind to it.
We have all probably seen children’s artwork being fixed onto the fridge with a magnet either in real life or in films. Well, turns out there’s a good reason for that. Seeing their artwork valued and displayed publicly cultivates a sense of belonging in a child.
They feel that their effort and the time they put into this artwork is appreciated and it encourages them to pursue things they want to accomplish in the future because they expect the same type of validation.
Children who are not self-confident often shy away from tackling new challenges or trying new things. If you have a shy child encourage them to branch out and develop new skills by trying new activities. Just make sure it is something they can manage.
If you throw them into the deep end of the pool (metaphorically speaking, of course) when they are not ready this may have the opposite effect and discourage them from tackling new tasks in the future.
Children tend to feed off the energy of their peers and they want to imitate their friends. So, logically, if they are surrounded by individuals who are confident and have a positive attitude this is bound to have an effect on them and their personality.
Making sure that they interact with their confident and positive friends will also help you accomplish the previous objective of encouraging them to tackle new tasks. They are more likely to follow their daring friends than heed the advice of an adult.
Physical affection is as important in building your child's self-confidence as verbal encouragement and praise. Hugs and kisses communicate acceptance, belonging, and love and they improve the mood. Additional gestures conveying positive emotions are pats on the head or back and high-fives; so make sure to incorporate all of these into your daily interactions.
It doesn’t have to be an entire wall, a few square feet of cardboard or similar material will do. On this 'wall', you can showcase their biggest achievements such as any trophies or certificates they won, or pictures of them participating in sporting events.
This wall should display the highlights of the things your child has achieved throughout their life. And make sure to leave space for any future achievements.
To conclude, confidence is one of the most essential characteristics your child will need throughout their entire life so make sure to cultivate it from the earliest age possible. Confidence shapes any person's life tremendously and helping your child develop it is one of the best gifts you can give them.
And the best thing is that you do not have to implement all of the aforementioned strategies at once into your daily life. Just pick the ones which are most convenient for you and make sure to stay consistent. Add a few more after you have mastered those.
You can also get your friends and teachers involved and teach them these useful tricks. With your support end guidance, your child is bound to grow up and become a self-confident and well-accomplished individual.