How to help a shy child
How to help a shy child
Some children become quite & uncomfortable in social situations, that is called shyness. All children are born with individual personality. Shyness is a characteristic of one’s personality. Shyness is tough to get rid of over time, but children can learn to be more confident and comfortable interacting and being social. Normally there is nothing wrong in your children being shy, According to many studies, 48% of people in the world have shy personalities. Shy kids are good listeners and behave well at school. There are many famous shy personalities like Albert Einstein, J.K. Rowling and Dr. Seuss.
Shyness becomes a problem when it’s making your child unhappy or becomes a hurdle in his/her academic success. For example, when your child doesn’t want to go to school or have a difficulty in making friend or doesn’t like going to a birthday parties. Severe shyness will deprive your children of opportunities in life. Few children overcome shyness with time, for those who can’t, life becomes a chain of missed opportunities for them. Such children feel lonely, unwanted and low on self-esteem.
Such severe shyness can decrease the quality of your child’s life, you will have to take steps to make your child overcome this shyness. We have mentioned below, the ways on how to help a shy child.
Tips for helping a shy child
Understand the nature of your child’s shyness.
Children are shy in a specific situation and not in another. Understanding what triggers their shyness, will help you make a plan to help them get rid of it. Notice when your child is shy, like in big groups, parties, meeting strangers, eating in public, making phone call or making friends.
Let them know that you understand.
Let your child know that you can understand how they feel, and that you feel shy too sometimes. Share stories with your child about times when you were shy and how you overcame your shyness.
Start early and make your children socially active
Start teaching social skills to your children as early as possible. Organize play dates for your children or create a scenario for your children to interact with others and practice social skills. Socialize at home, say hello to each other, shake hands, introduce family members to one another and complement each other.
Push your children to pursue hobbies
Hobbies will make your children feel special. The more hobbies they follow, the more appealing they become to themselves and others. It helps their self-esteem grow and it is also good for brain development.
Involve your children’s school teacher in your plan.
Parents should always stay in touch with teachers of their children. It can be a vital tool for helping your shy children. Compare your children’s performance at home with that in school, compare their notes with other children in the class. After gathering such information, think how you can work out on a plan with teacher to help your shy children.
Don’t force your children to be spontaneous.
If you want your children to show any of their talents in front of other, ask your children’s permission first in private. For example, if you want your child to perform a dance in front of guests, say, “you dance so well and your aunt Tina would love to see you dance.” If you ask them to perform without a prior permission, and your child acts shy, better change the topic and make your child comfortable instead of blaming of being shy and scolding them for not performing. Children safeguard their skills vigilantly and they become comfortable about that skill to be public, only after it develops completely.
Let your children speak for themselves.
If your children are reserved and shy, then you should stop being extrovert and dominating in front of them. Don’t always fill in for them, let them speak when they are supposed to. Intentionally ask them various questions so they could open up. For example, when you take them to the doctor, don’t interrupt in between if the doctor asks your children about their issues, let them speak about their problems on their own. This will make them confident and more outgoing.
Don’t criticize your children in front of others.
Don’t call them shy publicly in a way that being shy is a bad thing. Children will believe that they are shy by nature and will never try to change it. This will hurt their self-confidence very badly. Instead, call them reserved or quite in a polite way and make sure that your children aren’t listening.
Don’t criticize others in front of your children.
Shy children are especially judgmental about themselves and everyone else. Therefore, when they hear you criticizing other, they assume that everyone criticises everyone. They develop a fear of going out in public because they think others will continuously judge them. Teach them to respect others, even if they are not good at anything.
Discover your children’s strengths
Many children are shy only because they lack motivation and confidence in themselves. Every child is comfortable and developed in a particular activity; help your children discover that. Help your children find their own strengths by pointing out the good qualities in them. Motivate them to progress in their area of interest. This will help your children to build their own identity.
Arrange a play date with one friend at a time.
If your child has only one friend to play with at a time, he/she will be more comfortable and easily social. Don’t introduce a new playmate every time, keep switching between three four of regular playmates.
Model social behavior.
Children learn by watching parents. Make a list of things where you find your children to act shy. Make sure to do those things confidently in front of them. For example, answering the phone, ordering the meal from a restaurant, handing money to the cashier at a store or saying “Hello” and “Good day” to strangers. After some days, make your children do the same activities, without making it a big deal.
Don’t try too hard
It’s heartbreaking to see your children shy, and parents want to do anything for their children. However, be careful, the hard you try, the more the problem may bounce back. Don’t worry if your children doesn’t respond to your efforts, Just create a comfortable environment which lets their social traits build up naturally.
Most of the time your children being shy or quite is not a serious problem, but even after months of efforts, your children are notably quiet most of the time, doesn’t make any eye contact. Such children may require expert attention.
“Parents should understand that shy children have a longer runway before they’re comfortable enough to take off and fly,”