We all want happy and healthy children, but sometimes it’s not easy to work out what to do for the best for you and them. As a parent, you should be looking to guide them yet not smother them. I definitely struggle to get the happy balance!
I want Sofia and Arlo to stand on their own two feet and I believe a huge part of that is for them to have confidence. From feeling okay when they experience new things to believing in themselves, confidence is just so important.
I have already noticed the huge difference in Sofia’s confidence and awareness from her leaving nursery to starting school – she’s taken it all in her stride, which a few years ago wasn’t the case.
I’ve put together a few of my tried and tested methods in helping to build confidence.
Treat them with respect
We’ve all heard that old favourite ‘respect your elders’, but actually I believe it’s important to respect our little ones just as much. Show them respect, be kind to them, and lift them up – give them space and respect and help them to flourish.
If you’re always beating your kids down emotionally, it’s going to have the opposite effect on their confidence.
Boost their self esteem
I know it’s easier said than done, especially after the hundredth tantrum of the hour, but instead of punishing the things they do wrong, try focusing on praising what they do right. Focus on all of the good, be kind and calm and really encourage them to make the right choices with their behaviour.
The small shift in your own focus can often get you instant results in behaviour change too.
Go to classes
Another really great option is to take them to classes to help them to build their confidence. From SUP kids to performing arts or martial arts, there’s a lot that can help them – anything that allows them to come out of their shell and feel comfortable in themselves.
Before Sofia started school we used to do swimming, Gym Tots and ad-hoc Jiggy Wrigglers classes, we’ve been going to classes since she was really young. With Arlo, I took him to his own class ‘exclusively’ last week and he wasn’t confident at all and I felt quite bad about it, I just hadn’t put in the same effort with him; now Sofia’s started school I’m making it my mission to get him involved!
Encourage self awareness
It’s important to help them by working on their self-awareness, once they know how to process their thoughts and stay calm, understand their emotions, and play to their strengths this is great. I brought Sofia the ‘Sometimes I feel Sunny’ book which is a nice way of explaining and understanding emotions.
Make sure that you’re pushing them and encouraging them as much as possible. This may sound a bit over the top, but if you want your children to be confident in their lives, it’s important that you need to be confident in them too. Don’t let them give up when things get a bit tough or doubt themselves. Always reinforce them, show them the positives and encourage them to keep on going with whatever they’re doing, so that they can build more confidence in their own abilities and in themselves.