Why Confidence is the Key to Success

Success means different things to different people.  The meaning itself is relative to each person’s individual lives and experiences.  Success to me as a Tiger Parent is to have my children get into the best possible college they can attend.  Then to graduate and have the best possible career for their futures.  Having three children has given me some insight into what I believe is the most important trait for success, Confidence.

Is your child super smart or super athletic?  Is your child a great writer or an artist?  Can your daughter play an instrument or know how to code?  All of that is great but without confidence, it will be hard for your child to succeed and to excel.  

 

Kids need Affirmation

When your child is young, all he or she needs is YOUR Love and your attention.  What happens as the child gets older?  That need for love and attention slides over to their peers.  It’s not the same kind of love but it’s way more important to them as they become aware of what others think about them.  As a parent, you need to help them gain confidence to help them get that positive peer admiration and attention that kids crave.  

As kids get older

When does this happen?  When do kids look at other kids and feel the need for social acceptance?  This happens in Middle School.  In Elementary kids are just kids.  In Middle School, kids start comparing themselves to others for the first time.  Are the kids smarter than me?  Are the kids richer than me?  Who is the most popular?  When this happens, children with confidence excel and make more friends and go up in the hierarchy of their peers.  The kids with low confidence start to go backward or stagnate.  YOU MUST LOOK FOR SIGNS OF THIS!!!

How to Build Confidence

It’s never too late to build confidence in your child.  The earlier you start the better but just make sure YOU are proactive.  If your child is naturally outgoing and confident, consider yourself lucky.  However, if not You as the Parent must make sure you are doing your part in making your child confident.  

How I did it and you can too

As my kids are growing older and succeeding in school and extracurriculars other parents are asking my Tiger Wife and me what did we do.  This was all trial and error and lots and lots of research and question asking of other successful parents.  There were many times in the past ten years or so when we questioned if we were doing the right thing.    Now looking back on everything, I can honestly say about 90% was good.  Today, we are fine tuning our methods, adding and subtracting things that work and don’t work.  

Our Six Step Blueprint for Success

1.Make an honest assessment of your child.

2.Find one activity that your child is good at and excels

3.Make sure your kid keeps practicing in the one activity

4.As they get better and better make sure they enter competitions and or contests and WIN

5.Find another activity that they are good at.

6. Rinse and Repeat

Making an honest assessment of your child

As a Tiger Mom or Tiger Dad, you must be willing to do the hard stuff.  Every parent wants to think that their child is uber special.  Their child can do everything and anything.  That simply is not the case.  However, I think every child can excel in one or two things.  In an earlier blog entry, I recommended trying as many things as possible and see what sticks.  I know many parents that have their kids try at least ten different activities. That’s a lot but if you can afford it go for it. 

Find one activity that your child excels

If you can afford it try maybe one or two more but not any more than that.  Why?  I believe that a person can become an expert at one or two things but any more than that they become a Jack of All Trades and a Master of None!  For example, my son was into swimming.  In swimming, there are four strokes; freestyle, butterfly, backstroke, and breaststroke.  My son was good at all but not great in one.  

Make sure your child keeps practicing

Once your child finds that one activity that they are good at make them practice.  This is where the Tiger Parent really has to come out and roar.  Practicing his hard and tedious.  Not too many kids will practice on their own without being told.  When this happens you have to be tough and make sure they go through with practicing every day.  The more hours of practice the better.  Read Outliers: The Story of Success to see how practice really does make perfect.  When the time comes…

Enter competitions and WIN

All that practice will make them better.  Start having them enter competitions and contests.  Start small and have them enter as many as you can afford.  In time they will start winning and placing.  This in their eyes will prove to them that they are good at something.  This is where true confidence comes from and builds.  The more your child wins, the more proof to them that they can do anything if they put their minds and hard work to it.  

Find another Activity to excel

Do you have the time and the money for another activity?  If so go for another one and have your child go for it. The first activity should whet their appetite for even more.  If they like winning and doing well in one thing that should translate to another activity.  

Rinse and Repeat

Again after lots and lots of practice have them enter competitions and contests.  Start small and build up as they get better to bigger competitions.  To be good at one thing is good.  However, to be good at two things is even sweeter.  

How does this all add up to Confidence?

Confidence is all in the head.  If you never succeed in anything then you will always second guess your abilities. When the time comes and your child’s at the lunch table in Middle School talking about “stuff”, they will have the confidence to speak up.  They will have the confidence to not care if they’re not with the popular kids.  Your child will have the confidence to be a leader.  Why?  Because they already know that they have proven their talents and are excelling.  

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