Raise Confident Kids- The Ultimate Guide for Parents

 Self-Confidence is the foundation of all great success and achievement.

To raise confident children, is a modern-day parenting dilemma. But it isn’t an overrated one. Higher self-confidence helps one to accept the true extent of their capabilities and gain an optimistic approach towards the curveballs life might throw our way. Therefore, we at Podium bring to you a quick read that will help you know more about this elusive question and raise your kids to be confident and self-assured.

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What is Confidence?

What is confidence

Confidence is trusting oneself and all their capabilities and strengths. Are we born with confidence? The answer is both yes and no. Though confidence is pretty in-born, one also needs the practice to evolve and unleash the true extent of one’s confidence and self-esteem.

Every child has this inner strength that parents should nurture with positive reinforcements and constant efforts. You are laying the foundation of the road to success by encouraging and harnessing this strength right from childhood.

Why raising confident kids is important?

Parents, raising confident children is about helping them to overcome the many challenges of life and achieve their goals. As per experts during their early years, children are dependent on their parents, friends and their peers to build their self-esteem. Gradually, as they gain the experience they become confident of their abilities. In addition, when they receive positive reinforcement, children’s confidence in themselves and self-esteem will increase exponentially. Thus it will encourage them to explore new options and be proud of their accomplishments. Go through the reasons listed below to find out why it’s mandatory to build confidence in children.

how to improve public spekaing
Why raising confident kids is important!

It Helps Them to Become Successful

Confidence in oneself can help kids face new challenges and take risks that outstrip their abilities. When they can push limits, confidence can help create a positive circle, where every success leads to another. Researchers from Stony Brook University wanted to determine if there was any actual truth to the phrase “success breeds success,” and their study proved that early success bestowed upon individuals led to a significant increase in their success rates later on.

Confidence is something that aids children in their school as well. Behavioral psychology Stanley Coopersmith said, “In the critical childhood times, positive feelings about self-esteem do boost confidence in children and performance at school.

It Super-Charges Their Creativity

We as parents know that children are naturally creative and that there is nothing as valuable as the child’s imagination. However, the wellspring of a child’s imagination can reduce over the period of time if he is unable to cultivate the confidence to be creative. A study conducted by IBM discovered that the ability to express creativity is the only most sought-after quality among executives in the present. People who are self-confident will be more likely to hold onto their high-energy creative thinking.

As per Tom Kelley, co-author of Creative Confidence and partner at IDEO an international design and innovation company, “Creativity, far from requiring rare gifts and skills, depends on what you believe you can do with the talents and skills you already have.” Confidence is actually an important element of creativity. Thus it is confidence that allows people to boost their creative abilities.

It Nurtures Their Mental and Physical Resilience

The results of studies have proven that self-confidence isn’t just a mental state and it can influence physical and mental well-being. A child who has a solid base of confidence is more successful at managing stress and is more resilient to illnesses.

Numerous studies have confirmed the protection benefits of self-confidence and self-esteem. Most of them show the effect of physical and mental stress. In a study published by the National Library of Medicine, people who had a higher self-confidence and mastery, suffer less from physical or mental illnesses. The study found, “Positive self-esteem is associated with mental well-being, adjustment, happiness, success, and satisfaction.”

It Fosters Empathy

Confidence and self-esteem rise in children when they understand how their actions affect other people. Allowing children to help in the home or participate in volunteer projects at school could aid in building their confidence and increase empathy for other people. Encouragement to children to feel secure in their skin can enable them to see beyond them and realize that they are part of a bigger community.

As advised by experts, parents can help build confidence in their children by practicing positive behavior and by being mindful about the praise they give. Instead of praising too much in unintended ways or coming off as phony and unsincere encourage children to achieve their goals and recognize and applaud their efforts rather than the final results.

It Helps Them Find Happiness

Last but not least, according to studies, confidence is a source of contentment and happiness for any child. Parents can encourage sports and games to make their children confident. And also help them acknowledge things that bring joy to their lives. Being a good example, accepting imperfections, and encouraging your child to discover his interests can boost his self-confidence in many ways. All of this will help in the future of your child for many years to take.

Raise confident kids with these tips!

Confidence is one of the most important attributes an individual must possess. It helps one in forging a successful career, making important decisions, and communicating with others. A confident person will not shy away from taking responsibility and making tough choices. Such a person is never afraid to reveal their true self and acknowledge their failures. A confident person will always be open to exploring new experiences.

Confidence and self-esteem

Therefore, parents should endeavor to help their children build some self-esteem and confidence. But this won’t happen overnight and would require constant efforts. It may take more time to work with some children and less with others. We advise you to be patient through this journey because a parent will also learn and unlearn things along the way with their children

How to raise confident kids?

You can begin raising a confident child right from infancy. Instill confidence at every step of their growing years. For example – whether the child is holding their first cup by themselves, saying their first word, or taking their first step – be there to cheer them on. This attitude plays a key role in helping children realize that they are on the right track. Follow this list of 10 things to raise confident kids who will turn into confident adults.

Self-help is the biggest help

It is especially true when it comes to kids. Try not to intervene when the child is facing a problem – be it in their school project or when you go to the park or when your child is shy to make friends. Encourage your child to sort out the problems by themselves. Explain that as parents you are always there to help them, but they might not be able to face challenging situations if they first don’t try on their own.

Let the Kids be kids

Let your kids act like kids. Do not expect them to be your age. Let them play, get messy or just be. If you expect the child to be an adult before time or set unrealistic goals for them, they start losing themselves, especially when these goals are not met. The result is a reduction in confidence and self-esteem.

kids learning art with paints
Letting the kids be by themselves will reduce their dependence on others for constant company. This is one of the most important tips to raise confident kids.

Addressing the constant flow of questions

‘My daughter starts with her stream of questioning right before bedtime when the cogs in my brains have entirely stopped working.’, says a beleaguered parent. However, if your child does so, do not stop them. As William Arthur ward said, “Curiosity is the wick in the candle of learning.”  Researchers have found that a curious child always has the edge over other kids.

Basic General Knowledge (GK) Questions for kids (2-5 years Old)
Addressing the constant flow of questions

You might be busy or tired, but do not brush your little one away. Make them note down all their questions that you can answer later. It is best if they learn about things from you instead of going through other sources which might be potentially harmful. This is also your chance to help your child learn the concept of personal space and respect it.

Appreciation – the best motivation to raise confident kids

Appreciate the effort. Appreciation is an elementary need of a human being. Since we always act better with positive reinforcements and validation, a simple word of appreciation can work wonders to build someone’s self-confidence. Even in their weakest moments, acknowledging the efforts can help a child muster courage to do it again.

It's Employee Appreciation Week! Why prioritizing recognition is even more  critical in uncertain times – Michigan Medicine Headlines
Importance of appreciation

Negative comments are only successful in making children feel that they didn’t try hard enough. If you are a witness to their efforts, learn to appreciate them for the same. It also applies even if the goal isn’t achieved successfully.

Challenge your child – The way to raise confident kids

Life is definitely not a bed of roses. Throughout our life, we all face challenges – some big, some small. But overcoming them gives us the confidence to keep going. In the same way, providing challenges to your little ones like riding a bike or swimming will help them explore their own capabilities.

Encourage meeting the challenge head-on and see the joy and confidence shining on their face when they come out victorious. However, we do not recommend forcing your child into something they don’t want to do.

Failures are stepping stones to success 

This is an important lesson as your child learns to navigate the highs and lows of life. Do not discourage and deride them when they make a mistake. A better approach will be to encourage them to observe their methods. If the child has it easy without any mistakes or failure, they get used to ‘winning’- but they end up losing much more. Ever heard the story of two frogs who fell in a pot of cream? Similarly, self-doubt might push your child away from taking up challenges. On the other hand, a confident child will take a failure in their stride and treat it as an opportunity.

How to Convey the Right Message When Your Child Makes Mistakes
In order to raise confident kids, assure them that mistakes are a feature of life.

Do not be overprotective. Let the child make mistakes. Motivate your child to work harder and do better next time. However, this approach has to be balanced- your reinforcement should never come from a place of being too harsh on the child. Setting unrealistic standards for them will always discourage them as they will be scared of your admonishing them when they commit a mistake. Look at these additional tips on how to convey the right message when the child makes mistakes.

There are no shortcuts to success

As it is rightly said, there is no shortcut to hard work. Everyone wishes to see their child grow into a successful and confident adult. The best way to encourage it is to foster patience, practice, and hard work.

These three key values will help you raise confident kids who are fully aware of what they’re getting into and are poised and smart enough to tackle a crisis on their own. On the way, they also pick up lessons in humility. Teach your child that there is no harm in learning from others. Not only will this help your child gain confidence, but they will also learn to help others and accept help from them.

Expose kids to new experiences

Raise confident kids by increasing their span of new experiences and life exposure. This gives the child the confidence to face the world when they grow up. Age-appropriate exposure is an essential part of growing. An extremely sheltered life can lead to problems. This is because the child might feel unequipped and incompetent to keep up with what is happening around them. Therefore, it is important to help the child sample new things like food, media, places, and people.

You can also sample new hobby classes and introduce them to activities like creative writing, art, and public speaking. Check out the advantages of public speaking on your child’s confidence.

Raise confident kids by introducing them to a new activity

Lead by example to raise confident kids

A child always looks up to their parents. If you are worried or show a lack of confidence in certain situations, it can instill fear in children. Parental confidence will encourage a similar bearing in the child. Accompany them on trips and have a heart-to-heart conversation with them, just like an equal.

What is Mufasa telling Simba about? - The Lion King Trivia Quiz - Fanpop
When it comes to raising confident kids- learn from ‘The Lion King’. Mufasa teaches a young Simba the qualities of a ruler.

You are their parent, but it does not mean that you stay limited to that role and ignore that your child might need your support and companionship in some instances. Build memories together and learn new hobbies from scratch, so that they understand that there is always a first time for everything. Such activities strengthen the rapport and bond between parents and children. Trust the process to raise confident kids who make excellent and life-long companions!

Never criticize their efforts

Nothing destroys a child’s confidence like the mean harsh words. Negative criticism can reduce the child’s self-esteem and foster feelings of being devalued. The child might develop inhibitions about their own capabilities and will be averse to trying out new things. It would be better if parents could limit their harsh words, even in the tensest of moments. Punishments like silent treatment, excessive aggression, and corporal punishment will do the opposite of what you believe will help the child make sense. Children might develop a stammer or worse if they are subjected to aggression- be it verbal or physical.

Giving Children Constructive Criticism | HealthyPlace
Never criticize the hard work!

In order to engender confidence and discipline, children can be introduced to incentives and small increments for accomplishing little tasks. However, it would be wiser to wean them away from the charm of a prize and help them realize that good can also be done without incentives. But here is the catch- always tell them to respect themselves. Humility is good, but never at the cost of considering themselves any less than others. Assure them that their needs and wants are always validated.

Reasons why children are not confident

Shortfall of Encouragement

To help a child develop an idea that he has the talents and capabilities to be successful, he must receive strong encouragement from caring adults. If a child doesn’t receive enough encouragement throughout the years, he could take on this message over time and be afflicted by a lack of self-confidence, according to psychologists Bruce Narramore and Clyde Narramore in an article in “Psychology for Living Magazine.” Self-confidence signifies confidence in one’s self as well as self-worth and the feeling of being loved and appreciated by other people.

Ongoing Criticism

A positive self-image has an immediate connection to confidence in oneself. If parents are able to raise their child with a lot of criticism this child may get a negative impression of herself, according to the University of Illinois Counseling Center. The outcome of excessive criticism could be a child who isn’t convinced she’s strong or smart enough to take on obstacles and reach goals. It is possible that the child doesn’t develop the perseverance she requires to achieve her goals.

Overprotection or Parental Anxiety

Ongoing criticism

Inadvertently, parents can stifle confidence in their child’s self-esteem by securing their child too much or directing away from a child’s independence. Children may believe that their abilities and thoughts aren’t perfect and needs assistance to make choices and experiment with new ideas. Parents may also project their fears onto their children and they may believe in them as time passes. At some point, the child could be scared and timid because of constant exposure to anxiety from parents.

Negative Comparisons

While comparing children comes naturally, it can transmit a negative message, warns the author as well as speaker Maureen Healy, writing for “Psychology Today.” The effects of comparisons can erode the child’s confidence and self-worth, as he fails to receive the message that he’s competent and intelligent. If you put two kids next to each other and emphasize strengths in one child versus the weaknesses of the other child then the one on the weaker side typically feels hurt and devalued.

Unrealistic Expectations

Everybody needs to have goals and children do not differ. If parents force unrealistic expectations on their child and he is unable to meet them, he’ll likely have a difficult time meeting the other expectations. When failure occurs, confidence is often shattered as the child feels that the results aren’t up to par and can’t make the gains.

FAQs

What can a child do to show confidence?

Take note of your child’s interests and offer them work that will make them feel valued. If your child feels happy with their ability to organize their toys, ask them to place their toys away in specific areas. When children accomplish something and feel confident, they are happy. When the tasks are boring, work with your kids.

How can parents influence the confidence of a child’s self?

Some parents are involved in their children’s lives and control how they perceive their own identity in the world or they offer little opportunity for children to reflect on the ability to express their individual positive opinions and emotions. In both instances, the development of self-confidence, as well as self-esteem, is hampered.

What are the traits of a confident individual?

Few traits of confident individuals

  • When they freely share their thoughts
  • They persist with intelligence
  • Don’t become entangled on issues that are not within their control
  • They don’t look for approval from other people
  • They celebrate the achievements of their fellows

Final Thoughts

We at Podium understand that every child is different. Understand your child and never let your child feel ashamed of who they are. Inspire them to be themselves, as the world is their oyster. With this dose of imbued confidence and support from your side, your child can overcome every hurdle life throws their way. Podium School aims to encourage this excellence in them with our gentle guidance accompanied by your wish for your child to be happy and content with themselves while striving for excellence.

Check out the Podium Blog for more tips on parenting! Read our latest article on parenting in the times of COVID-19.

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