Most people know that having confidence is a valuable asset to have in life but do you realise just how much of your life it actually affects? It has been proven by many theorists, psychologists, teachers and specialists that confidence – or lack of – affects almost every part of your life. This is especially true when it comes to children. A child’s ability to attempt tasks that challenge them relies heavily on their level of confidence. Children who are lacking in confidence generally have a lower self concept and self-esteem. This leads to feelings of inadequacy and not believing that they can achieve their goals, therefore they give up on having any. But even worse still – there is evidence to suggest that this could possibly lead to stress, depression and anxiety.
Self-esteem has far greater impact than intelligence or ability!
According to Apter, a social psychologist; children’s successful development depends on their self-esteem. She adds that this has a far greater impact than intelligence or ability. Children, who are confident, believe that they have value. They also have higher expectations, persist longer in tasks, and in general display more advanced skills than equally able but less confident children. A child with little confidence can appear to be behind in their development but with assistance and encouragement this lack of self confidence can be overcome and their level of competence in most tasks increases.
Fear of trying new things, making choices and failure!
With the development of self confidence comes the development of high self-esteem. Psychologist Coopersmith, who has extensively researched self-esteem, says that people with low self-esteem are afraid of trying anything new; are unable to make decisions and are sure they will fail. This is clearly evident in Erikson’s psychosocial stages of development. Erikson’s Initiative versus guilt (3 to 6) stage relates to the way a child develops initiative when trying out new things and is not overwhelmed by failure. If children are not given the opportunity to develop initiative then they develop guilt which leads to feelings of inadequacy.
The links to anxiety, depression and stress!
Children who are afraid to try anything new in case they fail may become adults who will not attempt new challenges for fear of failure. Life without challenges can become mundane and gloomy which (along with other contributing factors) may lead to developing anxiety and depression. Consequently, stress can also become a result of low self confidence. Stress is the body’s reaction to fears, assumptions, and worries that we summons into our minds. The more we stress, the more insecure we become about our own coping abilities, and the result is lower self esteem.
Confidence: the key to reaching your full potential!
If we are to have the best chance of developing good emotional well being, all human beings need the opportunity to increase their level of confidence. In doing so, the onset of some emotional disorders such as stress, depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, etc may be reduced. Confidence is also essential to living our best lives possible and reaching our fullest potential! How can we aim for anything if we have no belief in ourselves that we can achieve all that we desire? Confidence gives you the power to hope! Therefore, it is imperative to nurture and develop confidence in all children and facilitate a desire for new challenges.
Darling Precious Children
Checkout my previous blog: Stop Comparing Children! And stay tuned for my next blog: Developing Your Child’s Confidence, for more insights into positive child guidance!