How parents can boost confidence in children
- Mums Tips
- Parenting Skills
- Published on Tuesday, 26 May 2015 11:00
- Last Updated on 14 May 2015
- Positive Edge Education
- 0 Comments
Often, when we as parents are discussing how to improve students’ performance and better their interpersonal skills, the subject of “confidence” is raised.
But what exactly is confidence? And is it something that can be developed over time, or is it a finite personality trait that we either possess, or we don’t? The answer may surprise you, but confidence is something that can be developed and fostered over time.
We often hear the phrase, “She’s so naturally confident!” or, “He just works the room – look at that innate self-esteem!” Words like “naturally” and “innate” suggest that confidence is a trait that we are born with. However, findings in the growth mindset teaching methods have shown this not to be the case. Building confidence comes from changing the way we think, and has been shown to help with everything from improving test scores to increased participation to closing the gap in education.
Confidence is a very misunderstood subject, and to make it clearer we have created two categories of confidence.
Fake confidence – is created by getting compliments. This could be compliments on our good looks, our good grades or our good sports performance – basically anything about us or our achievements.
Why is this fake? Because it is based on external validation and as soon as that is taken away we no longer feel confident.
Real confidence – is built by helping children seek out challenges, teach them that setbacks are good and natural and a great way to reflect, try a new approach. This will help your child learn to overcome challenges they previously did not think they could, and that will create the experience of being able to overcome challenges on their own. This confidence of being able to deal with life and any hardship cannot simply be taken away by an external source like compliments can. That is why we call it real confidence.
How parents can boost confidence in children
Think about some things you associate with confident people. Most of us will say similar things:
- A strong handshake
- Big smile
- Eye contact
- Great communication skills
But are these really signs of confidence? Or are these things we as society have come to associate with the word? These things are superficial, but they can be representative of the qualities of a confident person, which include:
- Self acceptance
- No fear of failure
- No aversion to challenges or trying something new
- Eagerness to learn
As a parent, you can instil confidence in your children by helping them develop these traits. Some ways in which you can do this include:
- Teach your kids life is about growing and improving rather than results. Children that believe they will never be good at something, or that they only have limited skills or talent, will hide behind this belief rather than face the world head-on. By showing children how they can develop their skills, they can be come more assertive when trying new things, or when placed in new scenarios.
- Contain criticism. Rather than berate or punish children for getting something wrong, welcome the mistake as a natural part of learning. This way, children aren’t afraid of errors, which can be a big boost to their confidence.
- Help your child face illogical fears. By helping your child express and overcome their fears they will become resilient and confident in their ability to deal with life.
To read more visit positiveedgeeducation.com
Thomas is passionate about creating innovative solutions to improve and revolutionise education. As a serial entrepreneur, past businesses include a healthcare solution in Denmark that improved workforce engagement, health and productivity. He moved to the UK in 2005 and founded Empire Claims and now Positive Edge Education.
Thomas felt a strong frustration seeing so many talented students disengage with education instead of fulfilling their potential.
Over the last 15 years he has developed a deep passion for education engaging in personal studies of psychology, neuroscience and learning theory which lead to the idea of merging the latest research findings with technology to create engaging programs that will help all students fulfil their potential.
When Thomas became a father he spent 7 months in intensive care with his son. It sparked the idea to start ‘Positive Edge Education. Developing educational programs that inspires, engages and provides the tools to adapt and flourish in a rapid changing world.
In order to create a holistic educational program that addresses the challenges faced by schools on all levels, Thomas needed a group of professional teachers, educators, and researchers to help make the Positive Edge model a reality.