A lesson in encouragement

September 27, 2012/Natalie

natalie wanted so badly to be able to walk on the wall at this park but it was high. at least up to my armpits. i helped her up but she found upon standing that she was scared.

“i can’t do this!” she said crouching down in a ball.

“sure you can, come on, try. i’m right here if you fall,” i said.

“no, mommy, i really can’t. it’s too high,” she said.

“natalie, hold my hand and walk the wall. i know you can do it,” i encouraged.

she reached out a shaking hand and grabbed tightly to the one i offered. standing slowly she began walking one foot in front of the other as if the 2 foot wide wall were a tiny balance beam. she gradually began to relax and walk with a normal gate.

“i’m doing it, mommy!” she laughed.

after a few more steps she said, “I don’t need your hand anymore.”

we couldn’t get her off the wall that day. when one would end, or we turned a corner, she’d jump right up at the start of the next wall. by the end of the day she said, “i’m a good wall walker!”

instilling confidence in your kids isn’t about praising them profusely or telling them how wonderful they are. telling someone they’re great only grows a desire for meeting approval. it’s develops a false confidence only as strong as the praise they receive.

showing them how great they are through helping them accomplish a goal grows a desire to do more. a sense of purpose and a sense of self-confidence. it builds strength from within. when your child is afraid of failure, encourage her to give things a try, even if she needs help at first. and let her know it’s okay to fail. our successes can only be measured against our failures. and failure is the best teacher of what success truly is.

Comments (4)

  • Heather from Ontario Canada / September 27, 2012 / Reply

    You are a wise mom! I learn a lot from your posts Leighann. Too bad all my kids are grown up. But I definatly will try and use these thoughts when caring for my grand daughter Avery and the others that may follow. Keep up the good work!!

  • Heather from Ontario Canada / September 27, 2012 / Reply


  • Anonymous / September 28, 2012 / Reply

    Wow! That is beautifully stated! You should write a book 🙂

  • Linda / September 28, 2012 / Reply

    Too many of us give up…I am so glad that you encouraged her and helped to grow her confidence! You are one smart Momma!

    Love, Linda

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