By Kathleen Boucher
This is the first article in a series of articles on raising confident children.
Parenting is challenging. Sometimes parents get it right and sometimes they make mistakes. Most parents strive to raise kids who say no to drugs, bullying, lying, stealing, and behavior that mocks them and others.
Parents rely on four things when raising children.
- They rely on their own upbringing. They discard what they don’t agree with, and emulate what they loved about it.
- Advice from parents who have brought up successful, happy children. They’re especially interested in solutions to problems that they’re currently experiencing.
- Advice from experts in child-rearing. This could be advice from pediatricians, seminars or books.
- And their own intuition that they know their kids better than anyone else.
What is one skill that parents can teach their children, on a daily basis, that will help kids say no to drugs, bullying, lying, stealing, and disparaging behavior? Parents can teach kids how to have confidence! Yes, it is a skill, and it can be learned.
This is said with the understanding that your child’s basic needs are met, as shown by Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Confidence fits among love, belonging and self-esteem. If you are not familiar with Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, I’ve included a link to an article that it explains it. (1)
Wouldn’t it be great if your efforts at teaching your kids to be confident were reinforced by a course offered in elementary school? Imagine how this might help the children who don’t have support at home? Food for thought!
One of the best books I have read on teaching confidence is entitled The Confidence Course: The Most Important Class You Never Took In School, Seven Steps to Self-Fulfillment by Walter Anderson(2) The author says there are seven steps to self-fulfillment.
Seven Steps To Self-Fulfillment.
- Know who is responsible. Accept personal responsibility for your behavior.
- Believe in something big.
- Practice tolerance.
- Be brave. Remember, courage is acting with fear, not without it.
- Love someone.
- Be ambitious.(3)
Let’s start with number one.
- “Accept personal responsibility for your behavior.” Teach your child to know themselves, and that their behavior makes an impact on others. Teach them to take responsibility for their behavior. Help them discover what they love to do, be, and have. Three factors play a part of how they are: heredity, environment , and most important, their responses to it.(4)Teach them to have integrity. Explain to them that they are unique. There will only be one of them created exactly as they are now, in the history of mankind. This makes them priceless. How is that for a confidence booster!?
Here is a simple tip. When my kids were growing up, just before they went to sleep, I would tell them that I love you and that I am proud of you. They are now adults, and they are very confident. Try it yourself. It takes seconds to do, and it makes such a huge impression!
In the next article, I will talk about how confidence is an attitude.
- Anderson,Walter, The Confidence Course; The Most Important Class You Never Took In School, Seven Steps to Self-Fulfillment, Published by Harper Collins, Copyright©1997 by Walter Anderson, I SBN: 0-06-018729-8
- Anderson,Walter, The Confidence Course; The Most Important Class You Never Took In School, Seven Steps to Self-Fulfillment, Published by Harper Collins, Copyright©1997 by Walter Anderson, I SBN: 0-06-018729-8, page ix
- The Confidence Course, page 19
Thank you to rachel-722081-unsplash for the photo!