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How to Teach Your Child the Value of Self-Confidence

 

Self-confidence helps a child grow into a responsible person capable of making good decisions. By teaching your child the value of self-confidence during the early formative stages of life, you are shaping the future success and happiness of your child as a self-reliant adult. It is an indeed an important value that begins at home.

Self Image

Self-confidence stems from having a good personal image of self. When children look in a mirror and like what is seen, they will have a more positive outlook on life. Children who are comfortable with themselves get along with others more easily. They will also be more confident when choosing the right solution to any problem they face.

Parents are a main source of self-worth for children. When parents vigilantly approve their children's good actions and behavior, those children will feel that they are worth loving. This feeling of love and acceptance are the seeds of growing a healthy self-confidence. It is important however, that parents do not go overboard with praise.  This will teach children to rely on external approval for their sense of worth( and make them more susceptible to peer pressure).  Parents need to help children develop an inner sense of well being; e.g. ask your child how it feels to do such a good job etc.

Early Nurturing

You can start teaching self-value as early as the infant stage. When a child cries aloud, either from hunger or lack of attention, responding quickly lets the child know that it's loved and is valuable. Imagine having all your needs and wants attended to as soon as you think it. You'll realize that you are being listened to, and therefore, feel worthwhile.

Being prompt in responding to your baby's cues for attention will help develop a strong sense of self. Of course, as the baby grows older, your child will also need to learn how to adjust to when you are not there. Being consistent with your parenting style is crucial. The important thing is that your kid knows you are there when it's really needed.

Some people feel that being too attentive to an infant or small child will "spoil" them; this is completely untrue.  Young children do not have the cognitive awareness that is required for being "spoiled".  It is extremely important to meet a child's developmental needs (in this case feeling safe and loved) and being attentive to your child's needs will do it (note that this does not mean giving in to their demands for toys or later bed times etc.).

Building Confidence

There are many ways to nurture your child's self-confidence. One of the easiest is positive reinforcement. Whenever your child does something good or accomplishes anything, give your hearty approval. A child whose feats and victories are recognized forms a positive self-image.

It is also very important that you congratulate your kid even when they fail at something. Children must learn that there is value in trying, and that losing is not being weak. This will enable them to adjust for those times that they don't achieve their goals.

Allow your kids to voice their opinions. Knowing that what they think counts, even when people don't agree with them, builds their self-esteem.

Be proactive in making your children feel comfortable just being themselves. Your consistent effort is necessary in teaching your child to become self-confident.

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