Helping your child have the confidence to try new things without the fear of making mistakes

As parents, we want to give our children every opportunity we possibly can. We know their strengths and their capabilities, and therefore, when they are reluctant to step outside their comfort zone and try new things, it can be incredibly frustrating and upsetting to see. Often, children fear making mistakes and getting it wrong. We need to teach them to embrace new opportunities and see failure and setbacks as a natural part of the journey. There are simple things we can do as parents to support our children.

  1. Find opportunities to try new things as a family – If we want our children to embrace new challenges, we need to model how to do so. Make a conscious effort to model trying new things with your children; whether it is ice-skating for the first time, learning a new language or even trying a new cuisine, show your child that apprehension, mistakes and uncertainty are absolutely natural. Model how to find humour in challenges and bounce back.
  2. Reflect – In order to give your child the confidence to try new things, take time to praise them for the times they have already done so. There was a time when school was new to them, or the first time they attended their favourite club. Remind them that it is natural to feel a bit scared and unsure, but they have tried new things before and it was worthwhile.
  3. Take small steps – If your child is scared about doing something new, identify small steps they can take to achieve it. For example, if there is a new school holiday club you would like them to attend, identify steps you can take to support them. Look at pictures online, research what activities they will do, ensure they are going with a friend and maybe even give them their favourite packed lunch to help them feel confident. Breaking down big challenges into smaller steps can support your child in trying new things.

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