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Building Self-Confidence in Children

June 16, 2020

We all want our children to flourish and feel happy with themselves, and be able to connect well with others. Children are under a lot of stress, especially these days with their way of life being altered so dramatically during the pandemic. First, schools transitioned to virtual learning, then mask-wearing became mandatory in public spaces, businesses and restaurants across the country shut down, and life as we knew it was changed.

With so many changes in such a short span of time, children were thrown into a new learning environment with no warning and no preparations. It’s only natural that their self confidence would be shaken by this unexpected new way of life. Additionally, pressure for children to achieve academically is at an all-time high.

Bolstering your child’s self-confidence is crucial for their success in school and in life. Here are some ways to help grow self-confidence in young children:

Connection—Children need to hear regularly how much we love them, and that our love for them is not connected to their behavior. They need to hear that we value and believe in them, and that they contribute in a positive way to the family.

The Power of Noticing—Children need to know that we see them. We see how they feel, how their skills have grown, and where their talents are developing. Offer praise by noticing out loud.

Empathy—Encourage children to see and respond to the emotions of others. This helps children to grow in empathy and know they are valuable and needed. Helping others feels good and develops self-confidence.

Responsibility—Children feel confident when they know we believe in them and give them age-appropriate chores. This lets them know we believe they are capable, and this enhances the way they feel about themselves.

Routines and Expectations—Children feel emotionally safe and able to try more challenging tasks when they are in a predictable routine and know the expectations of behavior or etiquette in any social setting. Children feel more confident when we have prepared them.

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