7 Hacks for Raising Positive and Self-Confident Kids

These powerful tips can help you teach your child to live their happiest and best life, by instilling a positive outlook in them from childhood onwards.

Feb 28, 2020

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Teaching your kids the power of positivity is one of the biggest gifts you can give them. A positive mindset is linked to success, both in our professional development and personal lives, so consciously raising your kids to be positive thinkers gives them the best possible chance for a fulfilling and happy life ahead.

1. Lead by example

This study is among many showing that the most powerful influence on kids are their parents, from success in school to career development. Your kids look up to you as an example of how to think, feel and act, so it’s important to model positive actions for your kids. Says actress Jennifer Garner on her parenting strategy to InStyleI try to be the best version of myself and to have faith that they’re watching me as carefully when I do something right as they do when I roll through a stop sign.” 

Speak to your kids the way that you’d like them to speak to themselves. When sitting at the dinner table, ask your kids about the best things that happened to them that day. Find opportunities to relay uplifting stories and experiences whenever possible. Try your best to avoid negative self-talk in front of your kids. 

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2. Do good, feel good

It is scientifically proven that volunteering provides major benefits; it makes volunteers happier people, increases feelings of empathy and strengthens social bonds within the community. Kids that volunteer learn that they can make a positive difference through their actions, which in turn makes them more self-confident and sure of their abilities. 

Get your kids into the healthy habit of volunteering at an early age, and they’ll be sure to reap the benefits of volunteering for years to come – not to mention that they’ll help make the world a better place.

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3. Embrace off-screen time

While it’s easy to get sucked into the virtual world of video games and tablets, research shows that kids benefit tremendously from limited screen time. Commit to spending time with your kids in the real world, free of electronic devices and their distractions.

Whether it’s baking together, playing dress up or exploring the local park, investing in shared offline experiences with your kids will make them happier, more self-confident and give them memories they’ll treasure later in life. 

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4. Reflect on the good

Finding the silver lining in a tough situation is a critical lesson for your kids. While it may be difficult sometimes to look on the bright side, show your kids that even when things aren’t going their way, they can still find something to smile about. 

Teach your kids that gratitude matters and even after a bad day, they can hold space to be thankful for the good things in life.

5. Acknowledge negative emotions 

Even if you’re raising your kids to be positive and optimistic, there will be times when your kids need to vent. Avoid the urge to sweep negative emotions under the rug – instead, acknowledge them and tell your child that you hear how they’re feeling.

By recognizing them rather than suppressing them, your kids will learn that negative feelings pass.

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6. Flip the script

It’s said that our memory of an event is highly influenced by other people’s reactions to it. If something bad happens and our parents panic or lose their cool, we are far more likely to remember the event as being traumatic.

When our kids experience difficulties, it’s important to reframe and regroup, crafting a positive narrative that will last them for a lifetime. This means that we acknowledge their emotional responses, but then focus on solutions and lessons learned, rather than wallowing in negativity.

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7. Find your tribe

The old expression “It takes a village to raise a child” rings true for a reason. Parenting is tough and it’s easy to feel isolated in your challenges.

 
 
 
 
 
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Time and time again I’m learning the value of stepping out and asking for help, saying yes to help, and being intentional about having a village. I learned the hard way that I can do this job, and do it well, alone. • Do you have a village of your own? Someone you can call who you know will be there for you? A community of friends who don’t judge you, but support you in the chaos and joys of Motherhood? • When I was going through my infertility I learned the value of having a village. I had so many close friends and family around me walking with us on our journey of hope. But I never really understood the value of having a village until I became a Mom. • The truth is motherhood can be lonely and it is important to have a village of friends to see you through your hard mama days!! And the victories of potty training and sleeping through the night. I had a village who stood with me during my postpartum depression and anxiety, friends who slept overnight to help us with our babies. I had a village when Charlize almost drowned. Despite the shame and blame I carried from her accident, not a single person in my life poured that kind of disgrace over me. They were there for me and listened and have even been with me when we ventured back into the pool again. I have Ryan and his twin sister who I call in the midst of extreme anxiety. They are the two people in my life I know I can truly count on in my deepest hardest most painful moments. And I have MOPS group which has truly transformed my life! • Having a village has been essential to my Motherhood journey. At times it is still lonely, but I know I’m not alone and I know I can’t Mother alone either. I encourage you to find your village. I’ve had to step out in some areas of discomfort and make new friends in my community because I was desperate for a village and I’m so glad I did ???? • Tee: @sloaneandliv #confessionsoftheanxiousmama

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It’s crucial to have support as a parent so that you can remain positive even on tough days - if you’re feeling down, make sure to practice self-care and reach out to other parents and friends when you need to vent. Being a genuinely happy parent is the best way to model positivity to your children.

LAUREN MARCUS, CONTRIBUTOR
Fascinated by storytelling since childhood, Lauren is passionate about the written word. She’s a freelance writer who has covered everything from the latest developments in tech to geopolitics. When she’s not writing, Lauren is interested in genealogical research and family folklore.