As children grow and develop new skills, they also become increasingly more confident. Confidence is important because it’s what allows children to put those skills into practise and bounce back if things don’t go to plan. It’s what allows them to perform well in school and eventually seek out a successful and fulfilling career. Those who lack confidence are usually afraid to try. Parents can help their children become more confident so that they are willing to try new things, take risks and overcome obstacles. Here are some tips from a sixth form in London.
Emphasise Your Love and Support
One of the best ways you can help your child with their confidence is to make sure they have your love and support no matter what. Whether they win or lose, pass, or fail, they need to know that you will be there at the end of it all. Use positive, reassuring language around them so that they internalise what you’re saying. For instance, if they’re struggling with a piece of homework, say something like “Let’s look at this together, the two of us are clever enough to figure it out”. If you show them that you think they’re great even when they don’t feel like they are, they will find the confidence to pick themselves back up when they’re down.
Seek Opportunities for Success
It’s important for your child to experience that sense of pride that can only be felt when one achieves something great. They won’t be able to experience this if all they do is play video games and watch TV in their spare time. Try and seek out opportunities for your child to succeed, as it will go a long way in boosting their self-esteem. Encourage them to pick up a hobby or learn something new.
Ask Them for Help
Next time you’re cooking or doing some household chores, ask your child to help you. This will show them that you have faith in their abilities, which will give them a confidence boost. Once they have successfully helped you, give them plenty of praise and encouragement as this will further contribute to enhanced self-esteem.
Focus on the Effort, Not the Outcome
If your child spends hours on end revising for an exam only to get a poor grade, they will lose their confidence. This is especially true if you are hard on them or demonstrate disappointment for that poor grade. Instead, you should praise them for how hard they tried. Let them know you are proud of them for the effort they put in and that there’s always a next time. Essentially, the idea is to embrace mistakes and imperfection.
Try to find time each day to ask your child to share some of the things they appreciate or feel grateful for. It could be something as simple as someone giving them a lift to football training, or a friend coming round to play. By encouraging your child to think about the good in life, and how fortunate they are, they will start to develop a more optimistic, positive outlook. This will lead to heightened self-assurance.
Help your child come up with some realistic goals and things they’d like to achieve, both big and small, short-term, and long. Show them how to break those goals into smaller, more achievable chunks and help them learn the skills they need to accomplish them. Having and achieving goals well help fill your child with optimism and confidence.
These are just a few suggestions to get you started, but one of the best things you can do to help your child with their confidence is to be a good role model. There will be days when you doubt yourself, but don’t let your child see that. There will be moments when you want to rant and rave but doing so won’t send the right message to your child.