1. Praise and encourage your child as often as you can
problem: Low self esteem
solution: ‘Hey, that’s a great drawing you’ve made’ or ‘Hey, you’re my champ’ or ‘You’ve been a very good boy/girl this week. It’s time for a treat’ If you’ve noticed other parents say this to their toddlers, why not you? Even if your child hasn’t done anything particularly exemplary, a line of praise or two wouldn’t hurt, would it?
2.Listen, listen, listen
problem: You’re not attentive enough
solution: Our friends have complained to us so many times that their tiny tots utter gibberish and they really can’t understand what it means. Or for kids from age 5 onwards, we’ve heard mums saying, ‘My child doesn’t talk to me enough. How can I make my child confident when I don’t even know what he/she’s going through?’ If you haven’t paid attention to their conversations before, how do you expect other people to?
3.Allow them to make blunders
problem: You want them to be perfect
solution: Once we found a dear friend of ours yelling at her 4-year old daughter, ‘How could you possibly break this glass?’ How do you think that would affect her confidence levels? If a young child doesn’t make mistakes, who will? Talking to them gently and making them understand is a better idea.
4.Do not compare
problem: You want your child to be better than your friends’ children
solution: ‘Look how Martha dresses. Why don’t you wear nice clothes too?’ or ‘Look at the amazing grades Tanny fetches in class. Why aren’t you doing the same?’ For all you struggling parents out there, we know you want your child to be the best, but take it easy. These lines are fatal for the confidence of your young one.
5.Expose them to people
problem: My kids are too shy
Are you a protective parent who never takes her kids to meet new people? You’re clearly on the wrong track. The easiest strategy to nurture confidence and self-esteem in your kid is to introduce them to as many people as possible. From Aunt Becky to grandma’s sister to Tabitha next door to the gardener Mickey, teach them to say hello to everyone.