Updated: Apr 20, 2022
The teenage years can be hard on both teens and adults. Teens are struggling between childhood and adulthood and finding their true selves. Self confidence can prove to be a major issue as they navigate through this time in their lives.
Just as in other aspects of their life, teens can strengthen their self confidence skills. Some will have tougher situations to overcome, but in the end, everyone can benefit.
Here are some self confidence strategies that you can share with your teen:
1. Start small. You don't want to expect too much too soon when it comes to helping your teen make changes in their life. To expect that they must become self confident overnight can prove to be a nearly impossible task, and it might just make your teen pull away from you emotionally.
Instead, focus on just one small issue and build from there. They could work on standing up to one friend or finding the courage to speak up more in class.
2. Work on letting go of the past. Many times a teen will have self confidence issues because of certain past experiences. Work on those issues first and explain that the past doesn't have to repeat itself. Communicate with your teen that, in life, you can't get too hung up on past issues or you'll be jeopardizing future opportunities.
If the past issues or experiences are really big or weighing heavily on your teen, consider getting them someone to talk with! A qualified therapist is a great place to start.
3. Remind your teen that they're not alone. Being a teen can be lonely; sometimes they're tempted to pull away just because they start to feel uncomfortable talking about their issues.
Keep an open dialogue with your teen and avoid judging them when they do open up.
Remind them that you'll always be there, as well as other family members and friends.
4. Provide encouragement. Teens need lots of encouragement because as they find themselves, they'll discover activities that they're good at in life. Sometimes things work out perfectly for them, and other times they begin to struggle.
Be there to provide that extra encouragement when they need to get over a hurdle.
5. Allow your teen to try something new. You can provide your teen with a great confidence builder by encouraging them to engage in new things. This gives them extra practice when it comes to confidence and it may help them become more grounded and social.
6. Provide validation. Use authentic, heartfelt words or praise and validation to congratulate your teen when they take a stride toward self confidence. If they take a big step forward, acknowledge it! Let them know you know how challenging it was for them and praise them for digging in and taking a chance.
7. Provide unconditional love. Unconditional love shows your teen that even if they make a mistake, you'll be there for them no matter what.
8. Be accepting. Be accepting of others and teach your teen to do the same. Your teen will have the confidence to be himself if you have an accepting nature. This will provide a starting point for feeling accepted out in the world away from home.
Remember that being there for your teen is the most important thing. Sometimes they'll want to be alone and other times they'll need your help. Either way, they'll know that you're always rooting for them.