As a parent, one of your most important jobs is helping your child establish the confidence they will need to face the world. Although you probably don't want to think about them leaving the nest while you're still tickling their toes, time has a way of moving pretty quickly. Building self-esteem may seem like a huge undertaking, but it can be easier than you think. Believe it or not, there are things you do every day that'll make your baby confident later in life.
Don't worry, you don't have to send your baby off on some crazy Survivor-like mission to make them more confident. In fact, the closer they are to you, the better off they'll be in the long run. Consistently responding to their needs, establishing a predictable daily routine, and encouraging them to play, are just a few of the very simple things you're probably already doing that will help your baby feel more secure and loved. And it's those warm and fuzzy feelings that will lay the foundation for healthy self-esteem down the road.
So if you were concerned that you weren't doing enough, you can rest easy. Most of the things you are going by just being there and being mom are setting your baby up for a lifetime of success.
1. Keep Them Close
Carrying your baby in a sling isn't just a convenient way of getting around. You're also helping your baby become more confident. As Dr. Sears mentioned, responsiveness is important to help your baby feel valuable and loved. Keeping your baby close makes it easier for you to respond to their needs, and shows them that their needs are important to you.
2. Give Them A Challenge
Give your baby age-appropriate challenges that promote the development of their motor skills. For example, placing a favorite toy just out of baby's reach, will encourage them to move towards it. As Parents mentioned, a sense of accomplishment can help boost your baby's self-esteem.
3. Follow A Routine
Maintaining a routine can make it a little easier for you and your baby to get through the day. According to Parents, a predictable daily routine is helpful in boosting a baby's self-confidence. If she doesn't have to worry about what's happening next, she can be free to work on other skills, like finding a way to escape from her crib.
4. Let Them Play
One of the easiest ways to help boost baby's confidence may be the most fun for both of you. Playing together is a healthy way of showing your baby how much you love spending time with him. And when you're playing, let him choose the game. According to Parenting, letting your baby direct the play helps build confidence.
5. Cheer Them On
It can be hard to resist the temptation to jump in when your baby needs help. But rather than immediately rushing to your baby's aid when he's trying to figure out a new skill, step aside and encourage him to figure it out on his own, according to Parenting. And when he does, you can celebrate together.
6. Set An Example
From the beginning, your baby is observing your words and actions. While you have a captive audience, it's important to nurture your own self-esteem. As Zero to Three pointed out, modeling confidence in your own behavior will help your baby learn.