Raising a confident child – part one

Confidence is one of the greatest gifts a parent can give their child.  A child who lacks confidence will be reluctant to try new or challenging things because they’re scared of failing or disappointing others.

This can end up holding them back later in life and prevent them from having a successful career.

Here are some ways to help build your child’s self confidence

1. Step back

As it turns out, there are better ways to build self-esteem than heaping on praise for everything kids do—starting with helping them become competent in the world. To do so, though, you have to learn to step back and let your child take risks, make choices, solve problems and stick with what they start.

2. Appreciate effort no matter if they win or lose

When you’re growing up, the journey is more important than the destination. 

So whether your child makes the winning goal for his team or accidentally kicks it out of bounds, applaud their effort. They should never feel embarrassed for trying.

3. Encourage practice to build competence

Encourage your child to practice whatever it is they’re interested in — but do so without putting too much pressure on them.

Practice invests effort in the confident expectation that improvement will follow.

4. Let them figure out problems by themselves

If you do the hard work for your child then they’ll never develop the abilities or the confidence to figure out problems on their own.

For example, it is better that your child gets a few B’s and C’s rather than straight A’s, so long as they are actually learning how to solve the problems and do the work. 

5. Let kids make their own choices

When kids make their own age-appropriate choices, they feel more powerful, as kids as young as two can start considering the consequences of their decisions. For example, when it is cold, let your child decide whether he/she should be wearing a jacket and gloves. They should have control over their bodies and take responsibility for their choices.

Part 2 of this article will highlight more ways in which you can help boost your child’s confidence and self esteem.