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Ways To Boost Self Confidence

Here are 3 great ways to boost self confidence in children.

Develop Physical Ability and Agility

It has been demonstrated that one of the best ways to boost self confidence is through sports. Does that mean your child should join a team or league? Not necessarily.

If your child is naturally inclined to play team sports, that's one way to develop their physicial ability as well promote interaction with like-minded children. However, for a child who is NOT naturally inclinated towards sports, this may be counter-productive.

Why? If he or she is not good at sports, there may be resentment from other team members which can decrease their confidence.

However, the student has opportunities to develop their physical skills through independent physical activities.
  • Biking
  • Hiking and camping
  • Running or jogging
  • Martial arts
  • Canoeing
  • Swimming
  • Weight lifting
  • Yoga
  • Dancing
  • Skiing
  • Calisthenics
This list, of course, could go on, but you get the idea. ANY activity that increases their physical ability will boost their confidence.

Another advantage of individual activity is the amount of time spent developing their skill. With independent sports, 100% of the time is spent developing their skills. However, a variety of opportunities exist:

Competitive Leagues
Competitive leagues are for the more dedicated athletes. Preference is given to those with better skills. These leagues usually require more committment of time, money, and travel. For the serious sportsman, this provides a solid opportunity to improve their skills.

Non-Competitive Leagues
These teams are formed for the purpose of having fun. They often require less time committment and less requirement for travel. They are not as likely to help your child win an athletic scholarship, but they offer many young people a greater opportunity for social interaction with friends.

Clubs
These usually have no games or competition. There are likely dancing classes or biking clubs or other opportunities in your area.

Individual Skills
This time is well spent in developing physical abilities, whether or not the student is also involved in a group. DVD's, books, and magazine subscriptions abound for any activiy you might be interested in.

Why is this one of the best ways to boost self confidence? As they put time into their chosen physical activity, they will see their skill level rise. Progress may seem slow at first, but it will occur. Physical agility develops slower than ability, but it also is achieved with time. Self confidence naturally follows. It is time well spent.

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Hosting

One of the other ways to boost self confidence is by entertaining visitors.

There are several benefits to having your child become a seasoned host or hostess.
  • They enjoy it.
  • They gain confidence in their ability to plan and to make friends
  • There are usually return invitations (but teach them not always to expect it.)
  • Increases their motiviation to clean the house and their room.
  • Enhances the parents relationship with friends and friends' families.
  • Improves their cooking skills (well, usually.)
Even a young child can benefit from this. Don't just invite playmates over. Plan the visit - with a degree of flexibility of course.

Invite a new acquaintance over to play in the wading pool, for instance. Lunch plans might include grilled cheese sandwiches and brownies. The afternoon might be spent playing with legos. Even a simple plan will make the visit go better, as well as develop early social skills.

The plans can become more detailed according to the age and desire of the kids. They can invite one person, or several. It might include hot dogs on the grill, or a pig roast. The more they do it, the greater their creativity and confidence.

You do not have to limit this to activities at your home. Invitations to go out are generally well-received. Multiple free or low-cost events abound: parades, hiking, community fairs, historic tours, etc.

Hint: As a money-saver, plan the food before the day arrives. It is much less tempting to stop at a restaurant when you have a crock of homemade soup, hot biscuits, and fresh pie at home. Otherwise, the local pizza joint is going to be more appealing to kids and you than going home to peanut butter sandwiches and stale chips.

Goal Setting

Setting goals is one of the best ways to boost self confidence, especially for teens.

How do we build confidence by goal setting? Look at the advantages:
  • Develops personal responsibility
  • Time management skills
  • Often involves budgeting and money for older kids
  • Boredom busters
  • Sense of satisfaction in personal accomplishments
Since setting goals is a relative abstract concept, the ability to engage in this will depend on the child's maturity.

Age 7 to 10: List Useful Activities
At this age, most children are not able to realistically develop goals that have multiple steps for achievement. However, assisting the child to develop a list of activities that they choose is a step in that direction. Here's an example:

MY WEEKLY GOALS
  • Construct a model
  • Ride my bike
  • Have a friend over
  • Read one chapter book (in two weeks)
  • Make brownies
  • Clean one shelf or drawer in my room
  • Take the dog for a walk
  • Email Grandma
  • Finish one club project
RULES
  • Put a sticker (or check, or smiley face) on the chart each time one task is done.
  • Each item on the list must be done at least once in a week.
  • Need to do a minimum of 30 tasks in a week.
This is an example, and the list can be made specific for each child and his or her interests.

Age 10 to 14: Short Term Goals
This is an age where many young people are specifically looking for ways to boost their self confidence. Learning to manage their time is an important tool in managing their life and their self identify. As they age their goals should become more complex. Instead of having a list of ten or fifteen things they might do in a week, they may have only three or four goals for a 12 week period.

These goals often have multiple components and involve a greater amount of time, and usually money. This helps to overcome the tendency of many young people to "just hang out and do nothing."

Age 15 and up: Long Term and Short Term Goals
Short term goals may be identified as those that can be achieved in 4 to 12 weeks. Long term goals may take 6 to 24 months. Of course, there is even longer term planning that people do that encompasses decades or more. However, it is a little bit hard to assign that long of goal setting to a teenager.

Planning long term goals involves more than accomplishing activities. It entails identifying the most important values in one's life. Certainly that is one of the most important ways to boost self confidence.


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