Hi there, it's Finley 👋🏼 and Happy Friday.
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This is Part 1 of a two week mini-series I'm calling: Confidence & Character
Want Confident Kids?
Let assume we are talking about the healthiest & best version of your kids as they walk into the building. It's their first day of High School.
You want them to hop out of the car, turn around and look at you with a slight look of hesitation in their eye. Then you look at them, smile and say "you've got this." They smirk back, close the door and walk confidently into a waiting classroom.
The look of hesitation followed by the spring in their step means, at least for today, they've got it. What's IT you might ask?
They have the summation of 10 years of confidence you've been shepherding into them.
Here are the Effective Parent's 4 Rules
for Building Confident Kids
As parents we don't want over-confidence. We also don't want timidity.
Confidence isn't something only extroverted kids can have. Introverts have it as well, sometimes even more!
An effective parent knows that there comes a day where your kids will need a sense of belief in their strengths to carry them through.
The right amount of confidence in their God-given strengths is critical to raising healthy teenagers. Plus it carries them on into adulthood too.
You get to spend your days as a mom or dad pouring that courage into them.
Here are the 4 rules you'll need to apply.
Rule #1: Don't affirm something that's not true
Parents can have a vision or desire for their kids that isn't realistic or possible.
One of our roles is to give our kids tons of opportunities and situations to try out their gifting.
One child might be great at talking with strangers while another keeps a clean room.
You have to actively remind yourself what matters most. It's not what you want to be true about your child.
You need to affirm what is in fact true of them.
When we look at our kids through the lens of what they naturally do well, we are more honest with ourselves and them.
Rule #2: Catch them doing positive things
The natural draw as parents is to spend more of our time correcting or discipling. Behaviors, attitudes, habits, defiance.
We spend a lot of time and energy on correction. It's normal.
But, if you want to raise confident kids, ones who have a sense of belief in their strengths, you must catch them doing what's right.
Then speak it with the same level of emotion (or more) you use for correction.
When they are a good friend, confirm their kindness.
When they sell lemonade on the street corner, praise their hustle.
When they sing a solo for the elementary play, recognize their bravery.
Rule #3: Find their strengths, don't look for yours
One of the great revelations I've had as a parent is both the strengths and weaknesses that I passed on to my kids.
It's humbling to watch your kids struggle with the same things you did.
Effective parents, though, see each of their kids as their own person. Not as a similar version of their brother or sister and certainly not a copy of themselves.
Confident kids know who they are, not that they are "just like their mom."
It's ok to be proud of the similarities but they need to know they are really good at a skill because its in them, not because it comes from you.
Rule #4: Listen to what others confirm in your kids
And then praise your kids for it! Over and over again.
Consistent affirmation of your kids is one of the most powerful and special things you can do as a parents.
It's so fun to hear and see great things about your kids from others.
Then, speaking courage and confidence into your children can happen in so many different ways.
At night as you tuck them in tell them something great about themselves.
As they get out of the car going to school tell them something you're proud of.
With your friends at a dinner party, brag on them in front of the whole group of adults.
Your kids will hear it all.
Remember, what you hear others say about your kids is what truly stands out. Lean in and affirm it into the heart of your son or daughter.
Big Idea: Kids need a sense of belief in their strengths to carry them through. Parents need to shepherd that belief into them.
They Need More Voices
"The person with voice of one encouraging parent cheering them on is resilient.
A person with the encouraging voices of parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents cheering them on is unstoppable."
I want to say thank you for reading and sharing this each week.
I'm in the process of adding a new referral program here as a way to show my appreciation and to serve you better.
Any suggestions for what you'd like to receive as a way of saying thanks for sharing this with other parents?