Jun 25 , 2021
17 in 10 girls believe that they are not good enough or don’t measure up in some way, including their looks, performance in school and relationships with friends and family members1. By raising confident and kind kids starting early on in life, we as parents can truly change this statistic.
#1 Be a role model for confidence.
Our kids truly look to us as parents for guidance on how to act, behave, and even talk.
The first step in raising confident and kind kids is to be the role model that shows them in action rather than just saying words.
I was raised by a single mom – an amazing mom – who worked three jobs. A 9-5 corporate job and then two side jobs just to make sure I would not go without. The things I remember most about my mom growing up was her hard work, kindness, honesty, survival attitude (never a victim), and telling me I can be whatever I wanted to be when I grew up.
I do remember some negative talk about my mom’s body and her constant goal to lose weight, which is a good thing to be healthy, but I remember being self-conscious about myself as a teenager. So I learned from this and now am more aware with my child.
It’s important that as parents we quit the negative self-talk especially about our body image and be proud of our accomplishments – and let's say so aloud! Kids model after parents period.
With my son we laugh about my belly sometimes (it’s not completely flat) – and I say, “Yup! That’s mommy’s belly. I’m eating healthy and exercising to get in shape but for now this is my belly and I love my belly. Perfect is not always the best.”
Saying little things like this makes a huge impression on kids.
#2 Embrace quirks and differences.
Here at Chanteur Designs we are on a mission to teach children, and especially daughters since we sell non-toxic jewelry for kids, to embrace quirks and differences.
This is the amazing part about living in the United States. Everyone comes from different walks of life and cultures. It’s a beautiful thing.
Aside from our cultural backgrounds, we also have characteristics that make us unique and different. Growing up I remember being self-conscious about a mole on my face. My mom, said to me when I was a pre-teen, “That’s a beauty mark, sweet girl. And did you know supermodel Cindy Crawford has one too?” So from then on I called it a beauty mark and embraced it as something unique instead of something weird.
A child who embraces their own quirks and unique characteristics are prone to accept others’ differences. My son has played with his autistic nephew since he was a baby. Now at age 5 and more aware, he still plays with him like any other normal child. My son doesn’t get scared when my nephew is loud, or claps, or makes other noises. He just plays. He has never even asked me about it either.
Teaching inclusion is very important. I used an example at the playground when my child was about 4 years old and he was bravely following two other kids around wanting to play with them. These other kids were older. After five minutes the boy turned around to my son and said, “Just stop following us!”
I chose to speak up and said, “That wasn’t kind. He only wants to play with you. I think it’s very brave to try to play with older kids you don’t know.”
Then I took my kid aside and used this as a teachable moment to say that there will be times where people won’t include him so remember how that feels and always make sure you include people. It’s very important. If you see a new kid at school or a kid alone on the playground. Go over to them and play or ask them to join in to play with you and the other kids. No one likes to be left out.
#3 Encourage individuality.
Make sure your daughter knows they can do and be anything. I think this is pretty apparent in today’s world, but reaffirm this. Want to be the president, a professional soccer player, a doctor, a welder? Whatever it is girls can excel at with hard work and putting their heart into it.
We always say in our home, “The world is your oyster. Will you choose to make pearls?”
A part of individual thinking, especially now, is to ask questions and not to automatically conform just because you are told too. And if your beliefs and opinions are unpopular, don’t be silent. Stand up for what you believe and embrace individuality.
#4 Don't focus on appearance.
We’ve been doing this since our child was born. We try to avoid saying how cute or beautiful they are and if we do say this we are specific. For example, “Wow, your eyes really popped on the stage during your recital.” Or “You’re so beautiful, smart, and funny.” So the appearance is not the main focus.
As a parent in the age of likes; selfies; and technology, Chanteur is a family where we remind our girls that beauty starts from within and radiates out.
Chanteur is on a mission to teach young kids to embrace their unique differences and authentic selves (which builds confidence!) and to be kind every day (especially when no one is looking).
If we are all beautiful on the inside, then we can shine bright on the outside.
So teaching our kids that beauty actually comes from having a beautiful mind, heart, and soul is a sure way to help kids feel confident and beautiful inside and out.
#5 Empowered girls empower girls. They don't compare or compete!
This is a great one and I live by this as a grown woman. I remember in high school back in the 90’s girls were cliquey and catty. I believe times have changed but I’m sure this still goes on, so as parents we must teach our kids to be better.
Instead of comparing themselves to other girls or competing with them, rally behind other girls; support them; and be happy for their accomplishments. Being a cheerleader is way better! If another girl does something impressive jealousy is not the way to react. Instead, say something positive.
And when someone is down this is the time to really encourage them and pick them up. Means girls are out, and happy girls are in.
#6 Watch Superheroes
Our little girls of course love princesses, but there’s room for action-packed superheroes, too! Our daughters don’t need to be put in a box. They can dress up as Spiderman for Halloween if they want to, play with LEGOS and cars, climb trees, collect bugs, go to Monster Trucks or an ice hockey game, and more.
My son’s friend, Emma, LOVES dinosaurs. She’s adorable and can name all of them. I adore this about her!
#7 Meditate & practice gratitude to create a mindset of joy.
Happy kids are more confident. Confidence and kindness comes from within so taking time each day to stop, breathe, and look inside truly helps kids embrace who they are.
Meditations do not have to be long – 5-10 minutes. Even a couple minutes to start. Look up on Youtube things like “morning meditations for kids” and see which ones you like. Starting the day with a quick meditation sets a positive tone for the day and aligns our positive energy.
We love using essential oils, too, like Valor for confidence and bravery. I even use it! I use it before a work day, before a meeting with a client, and even when I go to the dentist (I am usually afraid of but with Valor it’s a breeze). It's perfect for kids going to birthday parties, or going into new situations, and even the first day (or every day!) of school.
The best way to introduce essential oils to your family is to get the starter kit from Young Living. CLICK HERE to sign up and be sure to enter my distributor code during checkout: 25532108. Valor is included in the kit!
#8 Find, support, and foster your daughter's passions.
When we discover what we love and what we excel at, we build confidence. Whether it be gymnastics, sports, starting a business, art, theater, and more.
Find out what makes your daughter's heart sing. Then create a plan to foster these passions.
#9 Teach kids the power of being their authentic self.
Being authentic means that the person you are on the outside to everyone, matches the person you are on the inside that only you can see. Being authentic frees you because no matter what happens you know that you were you.
Teaching our kids to listen and trust the voice inside is such a precious gift. In our family will live by this mantra:
“Do what lights you up, and you’ll light up the world.”
Let go of anything that doesn’t serve you – not in a selfish way, but in a kind and loving way. If a friend is constantly causing problems and getting into fights then making up, our daughters have the power to let this friendship go instead of repeating the cycle of negativity. Perhaps our daughters want to make the friendship work and keep trying – that’s okay too.
Slumberkins wrote an amazing blog that you should read. In part it said:
“When we embrace what makes us different from others, something magical happens. We become confident and expressive. We channel our special brand of creativity and advocate for ourselves. Perhaps most importantly, we develop meaningful relationships with other authentic people—those who honor their true selves and act in alignment with their values and beliefs.”
#10 Teach kindness especially when no one is looking.
Kind kids are more confident, too. Start when kids are young and inspire their imagination:
Pretend play is a great way for young kids to practice empathy.
For example you can say:
“Your doll fell down and bumped her head! What do you think we should do for her?”
“Your doll feels sad that no one is playing with her. What can we do to help her?”
And with older kids the scenarios can be more complex:
“I wonder what it would be like to sleep outside when it’s cold out?”
“I wonder what it feels like to be a new kid in school with no friends yet?”
Click to read: Six Ways to Teach Kids to Be Kind
Modeling kindness is a huge part of teaching kindness. At the grocery store we buy food to donate and also I will leave $5 or another amount in the self-checkout change cup with a note that says – “This is for you. Paying it forward.”
Being kind to people who are not kind to us is also a great lesson to teach. Let kids know that the person is being unkind because of something they are dealing with and has nothing to do with our kids.
Doing random acts of kindness is a great activity to do with the kids and a great lesson that the recipient does not always need to know who was being kind. Being kind when no one is looking is powerful. It means you're kind simply to be kind and not for any recognition. This is true generosity and humbleness.
And we talk about karma too in our home – when we do good things for others, we get good things back times 10. Not that we should do good things only because we want good things, but the lesson is that if we are good, good things will come into our life because of our actions. Do bad things, bad things will come into your life. The law of attraction is an excellent concept to teach children and personally it has completely transformed my life.
Raising confident and kind kids is not difficult but it truly takes awareness and great modeling on the part of us as parents. How do you teach your kids to be confident or kind?
For more tips and inspiration follow @ChanteurDesigns on Instagram.
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