All parents worry about raising confident teens. Given that confidence and high self-worth will play significant roles in creating healthy, happy, and successful lives, it’s an understandable concern.
It’s heartbreaking to see a child avoid challenges, try new things, or develop an aversion to studying because of low self-esteem. Parents would rather see their children striving for their goals and embracing life.
You want to do all that you can to help your child develop self-confidence, but how do you do that? Read on to learn more about how children develop low self-confidence and what you can do to raise it.
How do Children Develop Low Self-Esteem?
All children will go through periods of low self-confidence, and when they do, they must find ways to step out of their comfort zones. When they can learn how to do this successfully, their self-confidence will grow.
When children struggle to overcome their challenges, negative thoughts and feelings can dominate their thoughts. Here are a few reasons why children might develop low self-confidence.
- Unfavorably comparing themselves to others (They are so smart, pretty, talented, etc.)
- Pressure to perform in higher grades
- A perceived inability to please parents and teachers
Low self-confidence will prevent many children from trying new things or studying for fear of disappointing others should they fail. They soon start to think that if they don’t try, they can never disappoint others.
How to Raise Self-Confident Teens
Now that you understand how low self-confidence can develop in your child, it’s time to learn a few techniques to combat it.
1. Teach Them The Process is More Important Than the Result
Kids can get hung up on getting perfect grades. If they believe they can’t possibly achieve perfection, they will wonder what the point of it all is.
Teach them that perseverance is more important than the result and mistakes are okay. The most important thing is the effort they put in. Help them focus on consistently putting in their best efforts. If they do that, they get a little better every day, regardless of what their report card says.
2. Don’t Bail Them Out
It can be difficult for parents not to rescue a child who appears to be struggling. Keep in mind that if you are constantly rescuing your child from a difficult situation, they will never achieve true independence later.
Give them all the support they need, but don’t do their homework for them. You will only hurt your child in the long run.
3. Set Achievable Goals
The goals you set for your children should challenge them while also ensuring they have every chance to be successful. You wouldn’t give a 2-year old a pen and paper and expect them to write a novel. Goals should be age-appropriate and within a child’s capabilities. A success rate of around 70% to 80% will mean the difficulty level of their goals is about right. Anything more than that probably means they are not exploring their full potential.
Take it One Step at a Time
Developing confident teens is a journey, and your child won’t get there overnight. A lot of a child’s behavior is learned by observation. Consider the role model you are setting for your children. Strive to be a more confident and respectful person in your own life, and you will lead your children by example.