The world can be a scary place. But as much as we may want to stick by our kids’ sides 24/7 and protect them from everything from physical danger to playground bullies, that is just not practical. Instead, it’s important to do what you can to instill in your kids the confidence to face whatever life throws at them.
Not sure where to begin? Here are some tips and tricks to get you started:
1. Allow Your Kids to Process Their Feelings
It’s hard watching your kiddo cry, whether it’s over a skinned knee or their first heartbreak. But don’t be in a hurry to wipe their tears away. It’s very important to let kids fully explore their emotions in a safe environment: rushing them through it will make them feel like negative emotions are something to hide… which will end up making them feel anxious. We can’t teach kids how to be resilient and bounce back from setbacks if we don’t allow them to fully experience the feelings that make us uncomfortable.
2. Encourage Self-Love By Modeling Parental Love
As noted drag queen and philosopher RuPaul says, “If you can’t love yourself, how the hell
3. Foster Their Interests
Letting your kid do what they love and actively cultivating their talent in that realm can create a great framework for success. If your child loves art, for instance, you can enroll them in art classes or even just let them experiment with different mediums at home.
As their confidence in their skills grows, so will their ability to see the bigger picture with your help. If they get nervous about learning how to swim or ride a bike, or if they feel uncertain about a subject at school, you can remind them that they used to be new to art, too. Refresh their memory about how they didn’t even know how to draw at first, but now that they’ve put in the time and effort they have a fun hobby they excel at. Let them know that the same learning process they invested in
4. Normalize Failure
Many people think failure is the ultimate enemy. But the truth of the matter is, we all have things that we excel at and we also all have weaknesses. Let your kids know that you don’t expect them to be perfect at everything: all you expect is that they give it their best effort. If your kid knows they don’t have to worry about letting you down if they’re imperfect, it will make them more confident about trying new things.