Authentic confidence is quite different than external confidence! Let’s examine both types of confidence.
External confidence is a perceived level of belief in yourself based upon what other people say about you. Examples of this type of confidence is when a parent or teacher provides praise. It involves external forces attempting to instill confidence in other person. The danger with external confidence is when the individuals who are trying to instill confidence in another person is not present. When the teacher, mentor, or coach is not there in a challenging situation to cheer and encourage the individual to stand up for themselves or to overcome a challenge, the person feel confident enough to do it alone. External confidence only works when the cheerleader, parents, teacher, or mentors are presence. It is not felt internally.
On the other hand true authentic confidence is internal. Authentic confidence is a feeling of self-assurance that comes from within. It’s not something you can fake or put on, but rather the natural result when all your strengths and attributes shine through in one cohesive package; this makes people want to be around us for who we really are – our true selves. It comes from putting forth consistent effort, focus, and intention into becoming a better person. It is built, maintained, and enhanced through our own actions which allows us to become stronger physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially. When we work hard to achieve a level of success, we start to believe in ourselves.
As you can see, authentic confidence is more powerful and last longer than external confidence. Others can feel, see, and sense an authentically confident person versus someone with a surficial level of confidence. People who feel confident in their own skin radiate an air of self-assurance that can be contagious. Authentic confidence is something all children need, but it’s especially important for those going through change or new experiences at school and home.
Here are 3 ways you may help your child develop authentic confidence:
1 – First and foremost, 98% of learning is observational learning. As a parent, you must consistently model confident behavior. This means you need to be aware of the way you speak, the way you act, and the way you respond to challenging situations. Your child is watching you all the time!
2 – Ask rather than tell your child what to do. Ask thought provoking questions such as “What do you think would happen next?”. This teaches your child to be self-sufficient. It teaches them to seek solutions to challenges rather than allowing them to feel like a victim. Victims lack confidence.
3 – Gradually encourage them to step out of their comfort zones. Teach your child that true growth comes not from being perfect or the best at everything. Parents must resist the urge to be a helicopter parent. Helicopter parents focus on preparing a safe path for their children rather than allowing them to face challenges and obstacles. As a parent, you must also be careful not to be snowplow parent who attempts to clean up after your child’s mistakes. Rather, as a parent you want to focus on helping your child develop an attitude that mistakes happen, and that you will not always succeed. Teach your child to failure is your friend and reinforce what can be learned from it. This helps your child develop a growth mindset and will have a positive impact on your child’s confidence.
As a parent, your goal is to help your child become self-sufficient, to be able to stand on their own two feet in your absence. Some day they will be out on their own and will need these skills to be successful. Take those 1st eighteen years of their life serious and help them prepare to become confident adults who will become a powerful force and who will make a positive difference in the world as a leader.