9 Tips to Raising a Confident Child

Teaching your children how to be confident in themselves is simpler than you might think.

Mother and her confident daughter outside in a field laughing

One of the first lessons in Parenting 101 is realizing how children have minds of their own—in a lovable way. Children’s young minds are full of creativity, curiosity, and exploration that will shape who they become as young adults and even as parents.

As kids develop and discover the world, it’s important for adult figures and loved ones to teach them proper self-confidence so they build self-compassion, learn to trust themselves, and remain optimistic about life.

Here are nine tips to help inspire confidence in your child:

Foster creativity and exploration

As children creatively solve problems and imagine new worlds, they expand their horizons and allow room for exploration and innovation. Discovering new perspectives and solutions will help your child become confident in deciding what they want to pursue in the future.

Give them opportunities to lead

A good leader can see other perspectives, listen, problem solve, and lift others up during challenging times. These are all qualities you can teach your child—both by giving them opportunities to lead and through your own example.

Related: Creative Ways for Kids to Be Active

Set and achieve realistic goals

Another way to build internal confidence is to practice setting and achieving realistic goals. Accomplishing something can make anybody feel great. For kids, realistic goals can be as simple as doing chores.

As goals are met, talk to your child about the journey, dedication, and emotions they experienced in accomplishing each goal.

Teach them that perfection is not the goal

It’s easy to get caught in the perfectionistic mindset when setting goals. This mindset can make you believe achieving a goal has to be done quickly, in a certain way, and without any flaws.

It is important to note that perfection simply isn’t reality, nor is it a healthy way for your child to build confidence.

Take time to talk to your children about striving for success in healthy and natural ways. Help them realize that failures are a necessary part of learning and give you the opportunity to try again.

Reward your child’s effort for trying and help them identify that bumps in the road are part of their journey to success.

Live without judgment

Goals make it easy to get stuck in patterns of negative judgment, especially self-judgment. One of the quickest ways to tear down confidence is by giving attention to these judgmental thoughts, beliefs, or actions.

Help your children practice living and speaking to themselves with compassion and without judgment. Allow room and tolerance for mistakes and help them strive to do better next time.

Avoid the win or lose mentality

Children learn to love themselves if they view their world, their successes and failures, and their circumstances as enriching opportunities rather than a game to win or lose. Help your child focus on growth.

Reinforce their confidence

Reward your children when they exemplify their own self-confidence or when they compliment other demonstrations of assurance from peers. Positive reinforcement is always helpful.

Related: 10 Ways to Give Positive Encouragement to Your Child

Positive self-talk

Children can learn self-confidence by learning how to positively speak and think about themselves. Each child is worthy of self-compassion and love. Teach them to talk to themselves like they would talk to their best friend.

Improve your own confidence

Parents, guardians, friends, and family can each play a role in teaching the children in their lives through their examples. There’s no better way to boost your child’s self-confidence than showing them firsthand what it means to live a life of self-assurance and optimism.

Regardless of how you teach your children self-confidence, it’s critical to their development and ability to succeed later in life.

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