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How to Raise a Confident Kid
Confidence Comes from These 3 Ingredients
No one questions the importance of confidence in determining success. Nowhere is this more obvious than in sports. All the physical talent in the world won't do you any good if you don't have the confidence to use it. Conversely, there are many examples of athletes whose physical skills are merely average, but whose self-confidence propels them to the top of their field.
Connectedness: Every time your child successfully interacts with others, his confidence grows. That's one of the great things about sports. Sports offer numerous opportunities to become a member of a group or team, to learn leadership and team skills, and to feel that you belong to something bigger than yourself. However, kids are often hesitant to reach out. You can help by providing non-threatening ways for your child to interact with others -- such as offering to take the team out for ice cream or pizza after a game, or car-pooling team members to practice.
Control: It is hard to be confident when you feel you have little or no control over what is happening around you. You need to help your child understand that while you often can't control situations, you can control how you react to those situations. Self-control is the most powerful kind of control there is, because it is a key component of maturity.
George A. Selleck, Ph.D. is a sports psychologist with advanced degrees from Stanford, University of Southern California and Princeton. He has played, coached and consulted for both amateur and professional athletes, and is author of several books including 'Common Sense: Coaching to Make a Difference' (2007, Coaches Choice).
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