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Knowing how to build confidence in kids is important for caretakers to know. We could all use more self-esteem and we definitely want to give that to the kids we care for. Whether they are our own children or our daycare kids. It’s an important part of running a home daycare.
What can we do to help our children stay confident in themselves and their talents? Here are a few ways to help boost a child’s confidence!
Confidence Building Activities
The best thing to do is to start young. The younger you can help them see their capabilities and strengths, the more confident they will be. If all they know is to be confident, it is hard not to feel otherwise.
Even if you have older kids, start today. You can still make an impact on their confidence. While it might take more time, it is worth it. If you stay consistent, you will slowly see their confidence build before your eyes.
Positive affirmations do make a huge impact on your brain and self-confidence. From the day your child is born, you can start saying affirmations to them. When they are old enough to talk, have them repeat the affirmations for themselves. It will be a habit they don’t know otherwise, and they will continue for the rest of their lives.
You can find plenty of affirmation cards online for all stages of life. But, you can also make your own for your children. You know their talents, strengths, and weaknesses better than anyone else. Make some that are just for each child. These will have the biggest impact on them.
While it is so hard to watch your child struggle through something you know you can help with, do it every now and then. It’s one of the very best ways to build confidence in kids. They need to learn the struggle in order to have victories. Then over time, they will gain confidence in their ability to be strong, persevere, and do things independently. Check out these 5 surprising things that can actually hurt a child’s self esteem!
Have a Positive Home
So often, kids will focus so much on their weakness to the point where all they say is negative things about themselves. When that is the case, “ban” self-criticism talk of any sort. If you can start this when they are younger, that will help even more.
Don’t allow any negative words to be spoken about themselves. When you hear a slip-up, have them say five good things about themselves. While it is okay to recognize we are not perfect, there is really no need for that kind of talk. If it doesn’t motivate you or make you feel good, don’t allow it to be said aloud.
Be a Good Role Model
If you say negative things about yourself, so will your kids. You have to be the one to start focusing on the good and be confident in yourself. Show your children that you can do hard things. Allow them to watch you struggle every now and again, as this will help them when they have challenges. It all starts with you when trying to build confidence in kids.
I am THE WORLD’S WORST about negative self-talk. I was raised by someone that talked very negatively to me and you believe what your parents say. It’s tough to overcome this. I raised my daughter listening to me talk this way and she talks negatively to herself as a result. I hate that.
But all I can do now is try to change for myself and be a better example to her as an adult (and to my daycare kids). If you talk mean to yourself, think about how you would feel if you saw someone saying those same things to your sister or best friend. And work on stopping it. It’s a hard habit to break, but you can do it!
Self Confidence in Kids
The more kids try new things, the more confident they will become, as they will see they are actually really good at so many things! However, it will also allow for more experiences where they do fail. It is good to embrace failure and recognize that we don’t have to be good at everything in those times.
As your children try new things, they will fail. It is bound to happen, and they will probably beat themselves up or not want to try a new thing ever again. However, if you embrace failure as a stepping stone forward instead of backward, they won’t give up.
Teach that failure is part of growing and becoming successful. Do not get upset when your kids fail. Instead, come up with a list of things their failure taught them. You can even go around the dinner table each night and share one failure you had during the day. This will help make failures normal and not a negative thing.
This works the same for mistakes. Just because they made a few mistakes during their sporting event or on their homework, so what? If you don’t get upset at them, they won’t get upset at themselves. Teach that mistakes will happen, we simply just have to move forward and try again.
Growing things in the garden is a great way to learn about handling failure. Because kids can see that some things grow and some fail. The garden teaches so many great lessons!
Give Effort-Based Praise
Saying “Good job!” is not enough or the right kind of praise. So often, we will praise our kids for being smart or talented at something. But, that can be harmful to children when suddenly they aren’t “smart” if they get an answer wrong on their test.
Instead, you want to make sure to give praise to your children for their effort. Some examples include:
- “I can see how hard you worked on this craft.”
- “You put a lot of effort into studying for your exam.”
- “You worked hard on this throwing technique, and I am proud of you for that.”
- “I liked how you never gave up and tried new things until you figured it out.”
Take Care of Their Mental Health
Now more than ever, kids need to take care of their mental health. We focus so much on eating healthy and getting plenty of exercise every day, but that is only part of the equation. Parents must teach their children how to take care of their emotional and mental health to be confident and happy.
Allow your kids to feel their emotions and teach them to release them healthily. Teach them how to take care of themselves and let them have a mental health day every now and again where they can simply relax and not feel the weight of the world on their shoulders.
Practice mindfulness with them and other great self-care techniques so they will learn how to be mentally strong during difficult times. This, in turn, will help build their confidence, as they will recognize their emotional needs.
Start wherever you are, even if that means working on building confidence in yourself. Each of these nine tips will gradually build your child’s confidence in themselves. Try to stay consistent, and you will start to see a beautiful, happy child blossom in front of your eyes. It’s so worth it to build confidence in kids. It will carry them far in life.
For more ideas, check out:
- How to Teach Kindness to Kids
- How to Teach Manners to Kids
- How to Handle a Strong-Willed Child
- How to Teach Gratitude to Kids
- Helping Kids Learn to Get Along
- How to Model the Behavior You Want to See in Kids
- Calming activities for kids
- Teaching Kids about Autism
- Self Regulation and Learning about Emotions
- How to Teach Daycare Kids Compassion for Differences