A Practical guide to developing confidence through goal setting and mindset training
In previous blogs, we talked about the importance of setting goals. In this blog, we will be sharing a great little insight into developing your child’s confidence as well as an exercise to try at home!
Let’s look at the five levels that form an excellent confidence building system…
LEVEL ONE: Lay the foundations, unconditional love and a positive peer group
LEVEL TWO: Initiate opportunities for challenge and adventure
LEVEL THREE: Emotions – Feel, Understand, Control
LEVEL FOUR: Positive Reinforcement
LEVEL FIVE: Goal Setting Method!
Lay the foundations….Your Child’s environment, unconditional love and their peer group.
For a child to truly develop and even consider taking on more risk, challenge and adventure; there must be a foundation of unconditional love surrounding them at all times.
“Unconditional love is the roots. Confidence is the wings”.
Young people who have both live bigger lives.
Consider also the love your child feels from their peers. Could your child improve their peer group so that it is more supportive and positive? Utilise our community assessment guide to decide whether your child’s communities are a positive or negative influencer. Consider the effect your child’s peer group will have on their long term development and their “inner voice” how they react to challenges, mistakes, failures and successes. Who we surround ourselves by is an incredibly important aspect of our development.
Challenge: Seek out a more positive peer group for your child in the form of a community outside of school that are have a strong ethos and whose values are aligned with your own.
Initiate opportunities for challenge and adventure.
As parents, we often want to jump in and help prevent our children from making a mistake. It’s a tough call, we know we can help them but we also know by doing so, we prevent them from learning how to deal with a certain situation.
As we talked about in our section on “Why you should Step Back” If you always jump in to save your child they will lack confidence in their ability to solve a situation or problem. Be the safety net but give them the space to learn. Competence cultivates confidence. Providing your child with the opportunity to take healthy risks means they will develop independence and pride. They will build strength in their decisions and through making mistakes, overcoming defeats and obstacles.
Challenge: Sit down with your child and talk about what they enjoy doing, perhaps a sport, an activity or a class. Talk about who they admire that is brilliant at this class/sport/activity and ask what makes them great at it. Seek out something achievable from your child’s words and talk about how they could achieve this. Challenge your child to achieve the goal and set a time frame.
Emotions – feel them, understand them and control them.
When each of us makes leaps out of our comfort zone (from putting our hand up in school to answer a question, to entering a public speaking contest or competing in a martial arts competition, we will feel anxiety and fear. Fear, the process of “feeling fear” and the emotions behind it, all follow a simple process. This process can be, learned, understood and controlled as we have talked over in our “Fear” Section.
“Courage is not the absence of fear but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not
feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”
Teach your child not to be worried about the emotions fear brings but understand that it is part of normal life and absolutely natural. By tackling fear on a daily basis your child’s comfort zone will grow and their decisions will be made from a confident, inner-voice which will ultimately be more positive. Take your child through these simple questions and be sure to relate them to your own personal experiences so they do not feel isolated and they feel happy to share:
Question #1: “What is making you feel (Insert emotion – sad / angry / scared / upset) ?”
Response: “I felt exactly the same thing when I (insert personal story)… It’s actually really normal to feel these things when we are scared or fearful, so you and I are the same!
Question #2: Do you want to know how I dealt with that fear?”
Response: “ I made a list of all the things that could go wrong with what I was doing and then… looking at them on paper, they suddenly didn’t feel so scary…. I then wrote a list of all the great things that would happen If I completed the challenge and I felt excited instead of scared to achieve something new!”
Remind your child that you will always be there for them regardless of the outcome but that they will feel a huge sense of pride if they conquer what is causing them fear. Depending on the age of the child, you can even personify fear, giving it a name and calling it “silly”, among many other techniques, I’ve seen this have a profound effect on a child’s confidence in tackling fear.
So, to wrap up on this point; teach your child to understand why they are feeling fear, where it comes from and what to do with the feelings. Teach your child how to channel their emotional energy from fear into courage and learn to step back and rationalise their emotions into something positive. This will have a profound effect on their confidence.
Challenge: Have an open conversation with your child about Fear when they next present the Symptoms.
Positive Reinforcement VS Negative reinforcement.
We all know what positive reinforcement is… it’s a reward for a positive action or behaviour. Many believe negative reinforcement is a punishment, this is not the case. Negative reinforcement is the absence of a positive reward for a certain behaviour or action.
Both can and should be used in conjunction with each other for the best results. Consider that positive reinforcement is the BEST tool for long term development, as studies have shown that over time negative reinforcement loses its power entirely. Negative reinforcement can be used initially to get the “push” we all need at times. This concept of “Push/Pull” is vital to maintaining perseverance and maintaining high energy for challenges and action.
Utilise the goal setting method we have provided in the previous pages. They will aid your child in creating clever goals that massively develop their confidence.
We hope you have enjoyed our blog series on Step Three of The Warrior Academy Method: Challenge. We’ve talked about developing confidence and the importance of setting goals, stepping out of the comfort zone and mindset. Now it’s time to talk about the Fourth Step of The Warrior Method – Lead.