Updated: Nov 14, 2020
Tip #1 Add the "You" and take out the "I"
A great confidence booster is the power of the word "You." A traditional method of encouraging a child starts with "I." When you use "I," you are conditioning them to seek validation from others. the "You" statements help them cultivate confidence from within. For example, when your child wins a race instead of using "I" statements such as ... "I" can't believe how fast you ran. I'm so proud of you. Try ... Wow, "you" ran so fast! "You" worked so hard out there "you" did it all by yourself. This form of encouragement promotes trust in their judgment, abilities, and skillsets.
Tip # 2. Praise beyond "good job": Be specific with your encouragement.
Children know when your partially paying attention to them whether they are trying to show you something or ask you a question. They know when you're offering them a courtesy or obligated "good job." Instead, be specific and praise hard work, character, and skillsets. For example: If your child shows you their art project from school, avoid responding with "good job." Instead, be specific. "You worked hard on that art project. It looks amazing."
*You help strengthen your child's confidence and self-esteem by giving them the positive attention they need to grow.
Tip # 3. Look for reasons to compliment.
Don't wait for your child to bring something up; look for a reason to give a compliment. The key is to promote confidence and self-esteem. Highlight a skill or character trait they might have overlooked. Example: Your child completes a chore without a reminder or fewer reminders than usual. Instead of thinking, "finally you did what I asked you to" compliment them. Such as You did it! You stepped up to your responsibilities and completed your chores.
*Remember to avoid "I" statements and give assorted compliments to boost confidence in their ability and appearance.
Tip # 4. Make them feel seen and make them feel important.
The feeling of being a priority is a big factor in feeling and being confident. You have to be intentional and show it by talking and listening to your child. Set aside time (15-20 min.) and allow them to speak without interruptions.
*When you show your child that you desire to know more about them and demonstrate it by taking the time to listen and talk, it allows them to feel seen and important.
Tip # 5. Don't be afraid to talk about "it."
As you prepare for back to school, you make sure your child has all the supplies they need to be successful in the classroom. However, we must not forget to supply them with the power of positive self-talk. Don't be afraid to talk about the emotion that comes with entering a new grade, making new friends, or adapting to more responsibility. Reassure their confidence by discussing how they will address the challenges they are bound to face. Hone in on some of the challenges they faced in prior years and give them the positive language to overcome negativity. For example, if your child is overly concerned about making new friends instead of general statements such as you'll make friends. Discuss the qualities of a good friend. Highlight how being friendly is a great character trait to have and look for in a friend.
*This discussion reassures their worth and confidence in their ability to establish healthy friendships.
Tip # 6. Give them choices!
Giving kids choices empowers them. Letting your child make their own choice boosts confidence, and it teaches them to trust their own judgments.
For example, you may say: What sounds better for today going to the library or riding your bike. Short or pants for today? Older children can plan dinner, pick a movie or pack a bag for a trip.
Tip # 7. Say yes!
Saying yes is an instant confidence and esteem booster. It's easy to get in the habit of saying "no."
"No, you can't play outside right now." "No, you can't have candy before dinner."
While you have good reasons for saying "no," you must be willing to be balanced. Saying "no" erodes a Childs confidence to keep asking if they believe the answer will always be "no." Try saying yes to simple things your child asks to do, eat, or go. It will make them feel more confident when their voice is heard and receive a positive response.
*Confident kids who can ask their parents for things will be confident to raise their hand in class.
Tip # 8. Model Confidence
"You cannot give your children what you do not have" - Brene Brown
This parenting quote is powerful and vital to the success of our children. It is a good reminder that in order for us to teach- including confidence, resilience, determination, kindness, self-esteem - we must be these things ourselves.