There are many reasons why people, including your child, lack self-confidence. There are a few things that you can do or tweak, to help them grow their self-confidence.
- Use encouraging words
- Help them take their power back
- Get them to question what they are being told
Use encouraging words
Words are important. The words you use when speaking to your child have an impact. Make it a positive impact. When your child makes a silly mistake or has a little accident what words do you use?
Do you tell them that all is OK? That we all make mistakes and that the important thing is the lesson we can learn from our mistakes? Do you suggest thinking about what we could learn from making a mistake so we can minimise or eliminate it happening again?
Are you discussing other consequences that could have taken place – both positive and negative?
The words you tell yourself when you’ve made a mistake – what are they? They’re often the words you heard when you were a child – the negative ones usually. Do you say to yourself things such as ‘You idiot, Trisha – why did you do that?’ – or have you heard other say similar things?
The words I encourage you to use, are character words. Character words help build self-awareness, self-confidence and, as you focus on a characteristic each week you build your character.
Some examples of the characteristics I focus on are kindness, helpfulness, responsibility, generosity, consideration, respect, trust, honesty.
If you want to help your child develop these characteristics, which result in their actions, as well as your own, you need to use these words in your everyday language.
You don’t know what you don’t know so don’t beat yourself up if you’ve just had some realisation. Life is about the present and what the future holds. Focus on that and help your child become the best version of themselves they can be.
To help you focus on one characteristic a week, download a list of character words here. You’ll also become part of my tribe and receive my weekly blog ‘Characteristic Of The Week’ which will help you focus on one characteristic each week.
Help them take their power back
As children discover who they are and who they want to be, because of the knowledge and developed skills that come with focusing on their character they become more confident within themselves.
That alone, helps them feel confident in their skills and abilities.
They realise they have the power and control to behave according to their values which they are developing on a day-by-day basis – just like you and me.
Your child will realise what behaviours they like and don’t like within themselves and others and use these words to mirror the behaviours they value.
When anyone, children included, feels they can express themselves in a way that shows they know what they do and don’t want, in life they let others know about it.
Get them to question what they are being told
Let your child know that just because adults are grown up, it doesn’t mean they know everything. It is a misconception that many children grow up believing.
Remind your child they were born with a brain so that they can think for themselves. If someone at school tells them they are stupid, whether it be a fellow student or a teacher, it is not a proven truth, it’s only a cruel thing that is said – that’s all it is. It also reflects more on the person who is saying it rather than the person who it is said to.
People have personal reasons for saying or doing whatever they do. There are many reasons people do things. Some reasons are understandable, some aren’t. They don’t have to understand why others say or do what they do, they just have to choose whether or not to believe what they say.
They have the power to choose what to believe. Encourage your child to make up their own mind regardless of what others want them to do. They need to be happy and content within themselves and that will only happen as they discover who they are and who they want to be and behave accordingly. Encourage them to be kind regardless of what happens around them, and they always get to choose how to respond to people and situations.