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  • 5 Things You Should Not Do to Raise Confident Kids

    A child will have greater chances of success at work and in personal relationships if she is self-assured.
    by Lei Dimarucut-Sison .
5 Things You Should Not Do to Raise Confident Kids
PHOTO BY @vvaragic/iStock
  • We all want our kids to be self-assured, though of course, that's something rare to see at a young age. Children are still just treading their way around, and every new experience will be full of uncertainties for them. Being confident means to be self-reliant, and that isn't something they can achieve on their own. For them to gain confidence, we parents have a big role to play. 

    Why is it essential to build up your child's confidence? Because his success in the future, whether it be in school, her career, or even in personal relationships depends highly on it. Confidence is knowing your worth and liking who you are. If your child does not have this kind of attitude towards herself, how much more others? As parents, there are a few things you should refrain from doing to raise your child's confidence.

    Do not over-praise

    Praise is good, but doing it the wrong way could backfire. Confidence comes from knowing you can do something well, but if your child gets praised for even the smallest effort, that might send the wrong message. In his book Your Kids Are Listening: Nine Messages They Need to Hear from You, author Jim Taylor says, “If you keep telling your child she is already doing a fantastic job, you’re saying she no longer needs to push herself. But confidence comes from doing, from trying and failing and trying again — from practice.”

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    Do not intervene all the time

    You might be unknowingly making your child feel inept by doing everything yourself. “To build confidence in the world, kids have to take chances, make choices and take responsibility for them,” says Victoria Sopik, CEO of Kids & Company in Toronto, Canada. If you intervene all the time, you are robbing your child of an opportunity to exercise her own judgment. Take small steps, but know that you have to let go to teach a valuable lesson.    

    But, don't let go all the way

    There will be times when your child will feel doubtful of herself — it's normal. This is an opportunity for you to teach that she can do something to improve her situation. "Encourage her to think about specific ways to improve a situation and bring her closer to her goals," says Karen Reivich, Ph.D., a co-author of The Optimistic Child. And remember to tell her to try again.  

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    Don't set unrealistic expectations

    Goal setting is necessary to keep your child determined. But when the expectations you set are too high compared to his abilities, there is a danger of failure. And failure could lead a child to doubt himself. Assess goals carefully versus ability. 

    Don't forget to give assurance

    It's easy to assume that your child knows you love her, but believe it or not she has to hear you say it. Love and encouragement are what your child needs. Giving him assurance that he is loved unconditionally, not for his achievements or grades, will be a great boost to his confidence.  

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