Self-confidence, also known as self-esteem, has an essential role in the overall personality of an individual. It is the value or merit that the person sets for himself. It simply means how capable the individual feels he is. The perception of one’s self-esteem depends on various factors, like his abilities, relationships, and how the person is recognized by the people around him. Positive self-confidence is imperative for healthy and successful living, so it is important to inculcate an optimal level of confidence in the child from the beginning.
Certain children, especially those suffering from learning disabilities, attention issues, or developmental delays, usually have a high chance of having low-self esteem. Such children need special and more help and care to build healthy self-confidence.
What Are the Ways To Improve the Child's Self-Confidence?
The following methods can be used to boost self-confidence in the child:
1) Encourage the Child: Encouraging children when they try something new is very important to build their self-esteem and also improve their self-confidence. Do not keep praising them every time, but encourage their effort to do a particular task. Overpraising them might make them feel over-pressurized to reach a specific outcome. So, instead of telling them, "I liked the way you made that car using these blocks," parents can say, "I appreciate the efforts you took to make that car with blocks."
2) Let the Child Help With Household Chores: Children can be given small tasks; for example, teaching them how to fold clothes and making them clean the house by keeping their toys back in place. Parents can buy them a plastic knife and teach them basic chopping, like peeling cucumbers and chopping them to make a salad.
3) Do Not Criticize Children: If the child keeps the house dirty and messy, do not criticize him or her by saying, "You are a messy child." Instead, parents can say, "You can start filling your toys up before going out to play." This might not fill negative thoughts in the child's mind, and they might not feel useless or worthless. Further, this will help them become more confident and disciplined.
4) Help the Child Find His Interests: If the child loves singing, parents can enroll the child in a singing class, or if the kid loves to play football or basketball, encourage him or her to spare some time for these activities. When the child knows about a particular skill or interest and advances in it, they might feel even more confident and enjoy building their interest as a hobby.
5) Make the Kid Participate in Elocution Competitions or Make Him Talk in Front of a Crowd: All children have a fear of facing and interacting with a large crowd. Parents can help the child overcome this fear by encouraging the kid to take part in elocution competitions or school assemblies, making them familiar with such situations.
6) Praise the Child’s Efforts: Praising the child verbally helps him to recognize his efforts, and he tries to maintain them or perform better. But this comes with some warnings cum limitations. Ensure to praise the child when he is seen trying hard and putting in an effort in something new. Instead of praising them over something they are already good at. For instance, if the child tries to tie his shoelaces but falls almost short, the parents can encourage him by saying, “It is almost done. You are learning it quickly.”
7) Encourage Children to Try New Things: Lettingthe child try his hands at something new adds to his persona and can even expose his hidden talents. Children should occasionally come out of their comfort zones and take in new challenges. The challenges might be small, but they boost more confidence in themselves, particularly in their abilities. For children with special needs, simple tasks that the parents do for them, like making a sandwich, can act as a challenge so they can be coached to do it for themselves, and later they can be praised for whatever effort they put into it.
8) Help the Child Create Reasonable Goals and Achieve Them: Setting goals and achieving them is an excellent method to let the child feel his control over something good. This aids in building his confidence. It is good to guide the child, but also give them the liberty to choose their goals. Ensure that their aims are achievable yet not too easy to achieve. Also, assign a timeline to the child for each goal.
9) Provide Surrounding Support to the Child: The environment and people around also help in developing positive self-esteem. Inspiration and motivation from family members, friends, and teachers in the form of praise and support boost confidence in the child. Connecting children with the same age group of individuals who recognize and appreciate them for their talents and abilities is a bonus. Possessing a supportive lot is supreme for building their confidence.
10) Let Kids Learn to be Problem Solvers: Gradually, the parents should enable the kids to solve their problems themselves and be present only as their guide instead of their problem-solvers. It is inevitable to protect children from the world.
11) Reward Children for their Efforts: Constantly rewarding children for their small and big efforts encourages them to try harder. Little awards like trophies from ‘Improved’ to ‘Trier’ inculcates an internal locus of confidence in them. This can eventually motivate them to become the hero of their own life by handling their activities and problems themselves. Real self-esteem cannot be owned without the feeling and capability to do things independently.
Positive self-esteem is difficult for everyone, even for normal children and those with special needs. As children grow and develop in their life, they encounter challenges too. So, proper guidance and support are necessary for them to defeat those obstacles and be victorious, feeling better about themselves and their abilities.
Frequently Asked Questions