Friday, June 12, 2009

Practice Confidence To Teach Confidence

As a parent, your sole responsibility is to raise a healthy, happy child who will grow up to be a happy, well-adjusted adult capable of contributing to society and governing their own affairs effectively and to a successful end.

One of your main areas of concern as a parent is in teaching your child to have a positive self-image and to instill within them the confidence to be and achieve all that they want in life. You want them to believe in themselves and in their own abilities. You want them to feel they are amazing, beautiful inside and out, strong, and absolutely capable of anything and everything. You want to give them the knowledge that they can achieve whatever they want in life because you know if you are able to impart that knowledge to them, they will indeed go on to achieve whatever they want in life.

Most parents believe that the best way to do so is to support and encourage their children in all of their endeavors. You praise your child's efforts and bestow compliments and words of encouragement whenever possible. This is hugely important, and it is my sincere wish that all parents actively incorporate these vital skills into their parenting. It is crucial to raising happy, healthy children

There is another aspect to this particular spectrum of parenting, however, that many don't even realize. When teaching your child to have a positive self-image and confidence in their abilities, your own self-image and the confidence you yourself possess in your own abilities, talents and skills, may be even more important to display in front of your children than the lessons you try to teach them. It seems that very often, despite the best intentions, our children more frequently "do as we do" rather than "doing as we say".

Think about it. You are a mirror to your child. Each and every day you are putting your stamp on who they will become by what you do and say to your child and in front of your child. They look up to you as a role model for what they should become, and they look to you for guidance and direction on what they should do and say. When you attempt a new task and your failure causes you to get frustrated and give up, your child makes a mental note of that, whether either of you realize it or not. When you're faced with a new challenge and hesitate to tackle it, or brazenly declare that you can't do something, your child will begin to accept these examples as basic, reasonable limitations, and eventually, they will assimilate these limitations into their own life and choices.

By comparison, if you approach each new challenge with a willing spirit of "I can" or at the very least, "I'll try", your child will learn those behaviors, and begin to model that attitude and that willing spirit instead. As practice makes perfect, the more willing they are to try, the more often they will try, and the more likely they will be to eventually succeed. That success will bolster their self-confidence to take on more and bigger challenges, and with your support and encouragement, their successes throughout life will snowball.

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