How to Build Confidence in your Child
Love your child.
I know this should be obvious but it is one of the most important thing you can give your child. Even if it isn't perfect always give out plenty of love. Your child needs to feel loved, this begins within the family environment and extending into the outer community such as friends, schoolmates and sports teams. If you shout or ignore or make other parenting mistakes, give your child a hug and tell them that you are sorry and you love them. Unconditional love builds a strong base for confidence.
Give praise when it is due.
It it important to give your child praise and positive feedback because children measure themselves by what you think. Be realistic in your praise. If your child fails at something or shows no talent at a particular skill, praise the effort that they put into doing the activity Reassure your child that it's alright not to be able to do everything perfectly. Tell him that some things take repeated effort and practice and sometimes it's alright to move on after you've given your best effort.
Help set realistic goals.
When your child is starting out in an activity, it's fine for them to think they will go all the way. But if they fail to make it half way, then they need to focus on more realistic goals. Guide your child to set reasonable goals to help avoid feelings of failure. If the goal is long term, discuss some reachable steps along the path.
Be a Model
You must love yourself before you can teach your child to love themselves. You can model this behaviour by rewarding and praising yourself when you do well. Celebrate your successes with your children. Talk about the skills and talents and efforts needed for you to achieve those tasks. In the same conversation, you can remind your child of the skills that they possess and how those skills can be developed and used.
No one succeeds at everything all the time. There will be setbacks and failures, criticism and pain. Use these hurdles as learning experiences rather than focusing on the failures or disappointments. Children will learn that setbacks are a normal part of life and can be managed. If your child does poorly on a test, don't smother them with pity or tell them that they never be a good reader. Instead, talk about what steps that they can take to do better next time. When they does succeed, they will take pride in their accomplishment.
Self-confident children are willing to try new things without fear of failure. You will need to supervise from the sidelines. Set up situations where they can do things for themselves and make sure the situation is safe—but then give them space.
Encourage sports or other physical activities.
Sports help girls and boys build confidence. They learn that they can practice, improve and achieve goals. They learn to recognise their strengths, accept or strengthen their weaknesses, handle defeat, expand their circle of friends and learn teamwork. They stay fit and learn to respect their bodies. Try to find a physical activity that they enjoys such as dance, martial arts, biking or hiking.
Support their pursuit of a passion.
Everyone excels at something, and it's great when your child discovers that something. Respect and encourage your child's interests, even if the interests don't interest you. Praise your child when they accomplish something in their activities.
Set rules and be consistent.
Children are more confident when they know who is in charge and what to expect. Even if your child thinks your rules are too strict, they will have confidence in what they can and can't do when you set rules and enforce them consistently. Rules will change over time based on your child's age. Learning and following rules gives children a sense of security and confidence. As children get older they may have more input on rules and responsibilities. It is important to remember that you are the parent, not their best friend.
Encourage building relationships
Confidence in relationships is key to your child's self-confidence. The most important relationship is the parent-child relationship. But as your child's social circle expands, you will help them see how their actions affect others and help to learn to maintain an inner core of confidence when someone else's actions affect them.