To listen to the blog post “Expert Advice On How To Build Confidence In Kids” over reading it just click the play button below.
As a single mom myself and a mental health professional I can say that knowing how to build confidence in kids is important. And building self-esteem in children goes beyond telling them that they are doing a good job. It goes beyond doing a few activities and telling them they are an awesome person.
- The most important aspect of how to build confidence in kids is in day-to-day interactions. How you talk to them, how you speak to them, and what you believe they can and cannot do. Sometimes you can discourage your child over encouraging your child and you do not even realize it. If you are a parent of a child then understand that your child looks to you for validation. And you could be shooting them down without even realizing it.
In this post, I am going to give you the key on how to build self-esteem in a child with an example of my own interaction with my own son. Because at the end of the day there is no magic pill that you can give your child that is going to make them grow up into a secure adult. It is the way you parent and what values you instill in your child that will determine that. Also, check out my video below on my son and, as he answers questions about being raised by a single mom. Don’t forget to subscribe to my channel.
How To Build Confidence In Kids & Build Self Esteem In A Child ~ Case and Point:
Meet My Son, The Inventor Of the Iron Man Suit. If you ask my son what he wants to be when he grows up, he will say he wants to be the creator of the Iron Man suit. He has been saying this for as long as I can remember and my response has always been the same Son you cannot make an Iron Man suit because that is impossible. I said it so much to him, that my son just stopped telling me about him wanting to build an Iron Man suit.
How To Build Confidence In Kids & Build Self Esteem In A Child ~ Mistake
- My Mistake as a Parent and How I was discouraging my son over encouraging him.
When you read this story you may be able to relate. Your child says something that you think is a little far fetch and you tell them that it is far-fetched, that they are crazy, or tell them to talk like they have some sense. In this case, as a parent, I thought I was making my son think realistically when really I was just limiting his creativity. I did not really know the extent of my discouragement until I was talking about my business that I wanted to build with my friends and they literally laughed at me and told me the same thing I told my son “Sophia that is impossible.” I was hurt and pissed off. And I am an adult! All of a sudden my son came to mind because so many times I told him to get a new dream because he could not be the future creator of the Iron Man suit. Each time I would tell him, I would look at my son’s face and I would literally see him be disappointed in what I was saying. But I did not see it like that.
How To Build Confidence In Kids & Build Self Esteem In A Child ~ What’s my point:
Before I continue on with my story I want to make a valid point here. Often times as parents there are things that we say to our children that can cause them to feel discouraged. And because we know best as adults, we do not even see that what we are saying to our children is actually having an adverse effect on them. Because what I was really telling my son with shooting down his dream was.
- Your dreams are not important.
- I do not believe that you can create something.
- Stay in a box, and do not dare to dream out of what ordinary people dream of.
No, I did not say these exact words but this is what I was telling him when he was letting me know dreams that were important to him. When really, what right did I have to tell my son what he could and could not do with his future? It was not like he was telling me he wanted to be a drug dealer, he wanted to create a superhero suit and here I was making a big deal about it.
I then thought about how someone probably told the Wright brothers that they could not fly or invent the airplane. Someone probably told Ben Franklin that there was no such thing as electricity and him flying a kite during a storm was insane (which it was by the way). And I am sure somewhere in time, someone told a caveman that making a fire was impossible. But here we stand and
“All of these seemingly impossible things exists in our world because someone thought they were possible”
Therefore, when your kids do something weird, out of the norm, or something that you as an adult cannot understand; as long as what they want and what they are talking about is positive then support them. Do not tell them that they are weird, to be like their sister, or to be like their friends. Support them and the ideas that they have. That will encourage them to have high self-esteem and value what they bring to the table.
How To Build Confidence In Kids & Build Self Esteem In A Child ~ Just Talk To Them & Listen
When I was in my Master’s program I was taught that for every negative thing that you say to someone it takes 5 positive things to reverse the effects. I knew that in my poor attempt to bring my son back to planet Earth I was really telling him that he could not do something that he really wanted to do, and therefore he should not even try. I was discouraging my child over encouraging my child. And I was dead wrong.
I had told him this so many times that I knew I needed to begin to reverse the effects of all the negative and discouraging words that I had said to him. When I got home that evening, I went into my son’s room where he was supposed to be sleeping but he was really wide awake. I walked over and asked my son
“What do you want to do when you grow up?
My son stared at me and then told me that he did not know. I knew that this was false. I knew that he did know he wanted to be the inventor of the Iron Man suit, but he did not tell me. Because he knew what I would say. So then I asked,
Is it to build an Iron Man Suit?
My son slowly nodded his head yes waiting for me to say something crazy. But I had to start saying the positive to reverse all the negative, so my reply to him was simple.
Well when you build one, can you make a pink one for me, with a long weave ponytail coming out of the top of the helmet?
My son looked at me for a moment and then got up and threw his arms around my neck to hug me. It was like he was waiting for me to give him validation this whole time. It was actually a really emotional moment and that is when I realized that
“It is in the day-to-day interactions, small conversations, how much we spend time with our children, and what we say to them that determines if we are building them up or putting them down.”
How To Build Confidence In Kids & Build Self Esteem In A Child ~ Final Thoughts
Based on the above story about me and my son these are some of the main takeaways that you should follow on how to build self-esteem in a child as a single mom.
- Many times we are discouraging our children for their own protection, and we don’t even know it. Therefore, pay attention to how you react to your children and what you say to them.
- Always believe in your children. No matter how wild and crazy their dreams may seem (unless it is illegal or something doesn’t encourage that. It is your job to support them and guide them in a positive direction).
- Now if your son wants to be a bank robber, gang member, or a serial killer. get them help! Do not believe in those dreams. You will know what dreams to harness and what dreams you need to get them therapy over.
- Encourage your children in the same way that you wish people will encourage you.
- Know how to guide your child that is your responsibility as a parent. Do not tell them they can fly and encourage them to jump off a building. That is crazy. Instead, guide them using your wisdom as a parent so they feel their thoughts and ideas are supported.
If you know a single mom that needs tips for building self-esteem in their children then share this post with them. And don’t forget to check out my best-selling single moms devotional (Fix It Jesus For Single Moms Only) by clicking here.
Beautiful post! You are a good momma 🙂 I’m thankful that my parents were always supportive of my little impossible dreams!
I love this! He really could make an Iron Man suit. Lots of great inventions were thought impossible. Thanks for the reminder to believe in our dreams!
This is beautiful. I almost teared up a little. Such a great reminder to nourish dreams and imaginations. In others and in ourselves:).
I love that you were able to realize the negative role your comment was playing on your son and change the dialogue right away. I can’t wait for him to build that iron man suit and for you all to look back on this post together.
This is amazing, love the way your son and you are together growing in so many different ways.
xx, Kusum | http://www.sveeteskapes.com
You are a great mom, and this is a lesson everyone needs to know/read. Great post.
This is such a beautiful read and you’re such a sweet mom. It’s so important to motivate and give them free space to learn, act and achieve.
Great post! I think its so important to not only support your child’s dreams, but help show them the ways and to guide them in how to do so.
love how kids think and aren’t afraid, unlike us adults haha