Confidence or some type of insecurity is something that we all struggle with at some point in time. As parents, it is our goal to make sure that we allow our children to become the best versions of themselves. I never want any of my children to struggle with the same insecurities that I had; not only as a child but as an adult as well. Every day, my husband and I do make sure that we remind our children how great they are, and that they can do anything they put their minds into. Preaching this to them starting from an early age is key to ensuring that they learn to be confident in their abilities at an early age.
5 Ways to Instill Confidence In Your Children
- Praise: I know that I feel absolutely giddy whenever I receive a compliment. Especially if it’s one about how well-behaved my kids are. So it stands to reason that kids would feel the same as well right? I try to praise my children as much as possible. No matter how big or small, I want them to know that I think they are doing a great job, and how proud of them I am. Remind your child(ren) as much as possible of their worth, so that they will know early on, and know not accept less than from themselves or anyone else.
- Trust: I remember how important it was for me growing up to know that my parents trusted me. My 8-year-old is the exact same way. A few weeks ago he lied about an incident at school, which caused my husband and me to lose trust in him when it came to certain things (*cue the boy who cried wolf*). Needless to say, he learned an important lesson that week about being honest and making sure to always be honest with us no matter what the consequences may be. However, trust is a two-way street. As much as we want to know that we can trust them, they have to know that they can trust us as well. As parent’s, we want our children to be able to come to us for not only the good things but the bad as well. We have built that trust with them by being patient with them through the good times as bad and ensuring that we are fostering a relationship that will allow for open communication as they grow older.
- Encourage: Whenever my children say they want to do something, I try my hardest to do it. At 8 my daughter wanted to create a blog, so I helped her. And it actually did pretty well. Of course, after six months she gave up on it, but I was so proud of her during that time. There was also ballet, guitar, chorus, and a host of other things that she wanted to do. I’m not saying let them do every single little thing. We didn’t up and move to California just because she wanted to be the next Disney tv star. But I have checked into several Marvel casting calls for her (we are patiently waiting for Black Panther). I want my kids to understand that I will always be there to support and encourage their dreams. They also have to know that, I will be there to push them so that they don’t give up when they fail. As long as they aren’t doing anything illegal, always be their biggest supporter.
- Let Them Follow Your Lead: As parents we not only have to set the standards, but we have to be the example for those standards as well. It is more than just a “do as I say because I say so”, you want them to know that you mean what you say because you live it ( I really hope that makes sense). Your children look up to you, as they should. If my children see that I show strength through good times and bad, they will. If I exude confidence no matter what, it is my hope that they will as well.
- Teach Them To Love Themselves Unapologetically: So often times lack confidence and insecurity can come from not wanting to be vulnerable for one reason or another. Teach your kids that they must love themselves regardless as to what anyone else says. If they have super tight, and big curly hair-be proud of it! Wear glasses? Who cares, love your glasses and love yourself. By teaching them to love and embrace everything about themselves first and foremost, you are making it difficult to allow doubt to ever creep into their minds.
Love of impromptu dance parties, 80’s cartoons, and horizontal life pauses (aka naps); Natasha Brown is a stay at home mom of 4 kids, and wife to one lucky guy! In her spare time, she is co-editor of Grits & Grace, as well as editor for The Mother Hustler Blog and Creative Director for the Mother Hustler podcast.