Let them hear you be­ing firm and di­rect, but po­lite

The Daily Telegraph (Sydney) - Best Weekend - - FRONT PAGE -

arr-GreggG says any ac­tiv­i­tyti it that teaches team build­ing of­fers a great learn­ing op­por­tu­nity.

“Team build­ing is a great way to build con­fi­dence,” he says. “That is be­cause any ac­tiv­ity that in­volves team work re­in­forces skills such as com­pro­mise and con­flict res­o­lu­tion. Boy Scouts and Girl Guides of­fer a won­der­ful op­por­tu­nity to trial be­ing as­sertive and de­velop lead­er­ship skills in a safe en­vi­ron­ment. And ac­tiv­i­ties such as karate are a beau­ti­ful way to de­velop and foster con­fi­dence be­cause it also in­volves lessons in con­flict res­o­lu­tion and com­pro­mise.”

Ronit Baras, a hap­pi­ness coach who teaches kids and teens lead­er­ship skills, says at the heart of the prob­lem is the fact chil­dren are taught to val­uel th them­selvesl b based d on whath t oth­er­sth think of them.

“Teach­ing kids to stand up for them­selves is a big is­sue be­cause we ed­u­cate kids to de­fine who they are based on what others think of them,” says the au­thor and cre­ator of the Be Happy In Life pro­gram.

“We don’t teach kids that what others think of them is just an opin­ion. So, then if they are called ‘nasty’ or ‘mean’, we are ef­fec­tively train­ing them to be­lieve this about them­selves.”

Baras says kids need to de­velop crit­i­cal think­ing, or the abil­ity to know it’s OK to ex­press a dif­fer­ent opin­ion, which will help them know how to stand up for them­selves.

“It all comes down to kids hav­ing con­fi­dence in who they are and the con­fi­dence to ex­press an opin­ion,” she Kim Smith, founder of the Stand­ing Strong Well­ness Club for Girls; and, above, teenage Kim Smith, founder­girl­soft­hep­ar­tic­i­pate in a Stand­ing Strong Well­ness­dance classClub fo­ratthe club. Girls says. “Girls“Gi l will ill not tb be th threat­enedt db by what any­one says or la­bels them if they’re con­fi­dent. I tell girls that if they have con­fi­dence, they have roots in the ground and I show them this by lit­er­ally push­ing them.

“If they are eas­ily pushed, I tell them to stand strong with their feet firmly planted on the ground and they can see then that it is harder to push them.” mith also takes a prac­ti­cal ap­proach to teach­ing young girls how to stand up for them­selves. She does this through her Girl Talk ses­sions, a type of group coun­selling. The ses­sions in­cor­po­rate skill build­ing through role-play­ing, which she says young girls re­ally re­spond to.

“W “We don’t know how to take people be­ing as­sertive and hav­ing strong opin­ions in so­ci­ety,” Smith says.

“The au­di­ence of­ten be­comes emo­tion­ally in­vested and the re­ac­tion to a strong con­ver­sa­tion can then be­come neg­a­tive.

“We need to teach as­sertive com­mu­ni­ca­tion. We de­velop, prac­tise and play out dif­fer­ent re­ac­tions and out­comes and show them how to talk through sit­u­a­tions rather than re­act to them. This will then give them the abil­ity to have the con­fi­dence to voice an opin­ion.”

Smith says par­ents can do this also in the home by re­ally talk­ing with their kids, not just ask­ing how school was but by chal­leng­ing them to have opin­ions which con­sis­tently re­in­forces how to be con­fi­dent.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.