Blog, Parenting, Reflecting

Raising Confident, ‘Hot’ Kids

Confidence is a double-edged sword. If you have too much, you’re labeled as a conceited jerk. If you lack enough, it can kill your drive to succeed and motivation to accomplish great things.

A lack of confidence promotes giant walls impossible to scale and negativity that convinces us that the world is against us – why try, right?

Confidence, though, empowers us. It brings us to new heights. It promotes positivity and a feeling that we can conquer whatever obstacles come our way.

As a parent, I constantly worry about my children’s confidence. Do they have enough? Do they truly believe in themselves? Do they have the drive to conquer negativity and push past those who attempt to cut them down?

I’m not sure how to answer those questions yet, although the potential answers put me into a tailspin of worry. I know that they are creative, unique and special in their own way. I know that my daughter is a talented dancer, a thoughtful soul and a nurturer. I know that my son is artistic, passionate and conscientious about his actions. But do they know?

How do we, as parents, preach to our children about the importance of confidence when at times, we doubt our own abilities? I often wonder: Am I getting this parenting thing right? Am I too overprotective? Am I too relaxed with discipline?

Do I encourage them enough? Do I show them how to be confident? I don’t know these answers either because I, too, lack confidence at times.

This double-edged sword continues to dig deeper as my children grow and face social, emotional and academic challenges. It tears away at my daughter when she is rejected by a friend or a team. It tears away at my son when another kid tells him he’s not good enough “at anything” as he puts it.

I can’t fix the problems they face, but I can encourage them and work to build their confidence and mine at the same time.

And, just as I think the negativity is succeeding, they surprise me with their strength.

This was evident when my son hopped in my car after school the other day, sweaty from his PE class. “I’m hot, mom,” he said. “And I don’t mean the weather.”

Hmmm. Maybe I don’t have anything to be worried about.


– Shannon Philpott
Blog Entry: April 28, 2010

© Shannon Philpott, 2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Shannon Philpott and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


4 thoughts on “Raising Confident, ‘Hot’ Kids”

  1. Funny post and a good topic. For me, trying to raise confident kids has been allowing them to fail and not intervening–it has been a tough thing to do.

  2. I have to say, this is a great post. Very cute, with lots of truth. Believe it or not, kid’s confidence comes a lot from how their parents see them. Girls who get little attention from their Dad may end up seeking it in other, romantically-themed male relationships. It’s all so important. Take it from a teen. =]

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  3. Thanks! I completely agree – allowing them to fail is agonizing for a parent but definitely necessary. We can’t shield them from the world. My hope is that they gain more confidence and independence from picking up the pieces (as long as we are right by their side while they do).

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