Nowadays, we hear so much about the idea of believing in one’s self. It seems to be a factor that separates success from failure. However, the exact definition of self-belief is not an easy one; Psychologists have always struggled to find an exact definition for the term, especially since self-confidence may be a much familiar expression. According to Psychologists, trusting in your skills and abilities along with believing that you can reach a target that you set for yourself is what self-confidence is about. Therefore, we can extract the fact that self-belief is a part of self-confidence; nevertheless, self-belief does not stand alone. This notion needs to be instilled into people’s actions in order to be sensed by those surrounding them.
The world is becoming a tougher place to live in every single day and growing up in this age and time is not a piece of cake. Self-image, appearances, degrees, social status and employment are just some examples of the pressure children and young adults are facing on a daily basis. Preparing your child for the world is not an easy task; you need to be armed with all the right methods and tools to help them face all these challenges. No parent wants to see their child fail, feel frustrated or defeated. Here, we turn to science to support us.
In 1977, Bandura – a well-known Psychologist – came up with a theory stating that self-efficacy of human beings is based on their belief of the possibility of success in the future. Those who do believe that their capabilities could impact their lives, are the ones with high self-efficacy. On the contrary, if they believe they have no control or impact, they end up having low-efficacy. In other words, self-belief in one’s ability, according to Bandura, affects failure and success in life. Luckily, psychologists provide us with many theories and applications on how to raise self-belief, specifically in children.
Here are 3 different activities, especially designed for children to boost their self-belief notion:
Catch the compliment: This is an easy activity that could work in family gatherings of different ages, parents and adults could also play along. It is fun to participate in or even watch the game.
Preparation: Gather some soft balls or beach balls that could be easily tossed around. You can use any item from the household that is round and doesn’t break or hurt anyone. Also, make sure you clear the area from any breakables or perform the activity in the outdoors.
Process: stand in a wide circle, have each player toss the ball in turn to someone else. While tossing the ball, the player has to say a compliment about the receiver. The game continues until the compliments become about the smallest and most minute traits or features of the receiver. This leads to a pleasant yet funny game.
Conclusion: Ask players about the funniest incident or the nicest compliment. Have players reflect on the game on a deeper level. Give positive feedback and motivation.
Positive Experience: Thiis is also an easy activity; it could be useful in a summer or sports camp. It could also be very effective with siblings, cousins, and younger relatives who sometimes quarrel with one another.
Preparation: index cards and a bowl are needed, depending on the number of players.
Process: have everyone sit in a circle, hold an index card and a pen. Have everyone write their names on the cards. Grab a bowl and have them throw the papers in. Stir the papers in, and each participant is to blindly pick a piece of paper with a name on it. Ask participants to write a compliment about that person privately and give it to the next person to do the same. Pass the bowl from one person to another. Collect the cards, put them in the bowl.
Conclusion: Have participants pick the cards with their names on it and read it out loud. This will result in children walking away with a positive feeling.
About Me Worksheet: This activity works with an older crowd. Young adults and teenagers are great candidates to perform this exercise.
The worksheet should include these phrases to be completed:
I felt happy when..
My friends like that I..
I feel proud when/of ..
I made my parents happy when..
I am good at..
I am unique because..
This activity is a reminder about the positive aspects of someone’s personality. It could be used in case one feels down or frustrated.
Self-confidence, self-belief and self-esteem are all notions that are needed on a daily basis, specifically for a child. Parents need to boost these feelings to be able to replace what the surrounding environment might take away from the child. These positive emotions could lead to better health. If a child faces stress while armed with confidence, chances are, it won’t affect his/her health negatively. Self-belief also results in better family relationships; the support and encouragement from parents will always have such a positive impact. Moreover, if children grow up with self-belief, they are more likely to perform better in school and in their careers later on. Self-belief is a seed that needs to be watered to flourish and a parent’s attitudes and care definitely bring it to life.
Written By: Teacher Nouran