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Central to the skills children require for the future of work is self-belief. A child who believes in themselves, believes in their ability and their capability to ride challenges and celebrate progress are in good stead for the future.

Self-belief is different from having an exaggerated self-opinion. An exaggerated self-opinion, or arrogance, is often seen and received as bragging and results in disconnection from others. Self-belief on the other hand, is seen and received by others as inspiring and results in connection with others.

Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right!

Henry Ford

A belief is an acceptance that something is true, whether or not empirical evidence is available. Children can believe they are capable, they can believe they are incapable, they can believe they are at the mercy of others, they can believe and back themselves. Beliefs colour the way they view the world.

There are three components to a child’s healthy self-belief:

  • They believe they are more than what they achieve
  • They believe they can handle reality
  • They believe that they have choices no matter the circumstance

When a child believes they are more than what they achieve, they are less likely to want to strive for achievement for achievements’ sake and they move towards achieving for fulfilment and how they can help others.

If a child believes they have internal resources to deal with situation and events, especially when they are less than ideal, they are quicker to accept and adapt and look for solutions to their problems.

When a child believes they have the power to choose how they respond in any circumstance, they climb into the driver’s seat for their future.

Viktor Frankl in his book Man’s Search for Meaning wrote about his time in the concentration camps. He shares how no matter what abuse the soldiers hurled at him, he refused to say he hated them. He chose to maintain the power over what he was thinking and feeling and he came out resilient as a result. He chose the way he responded in the most extreme circumstances.

Teaching your child a healthy self-belief will enable them to thrive in the unknown, exciting future of work.