Helping your shy child feel more confident

Anybody who know’s Bella well won’t believe I’m writing this they’ll know her as a little ball of energy with that super cheeky smile, at home when she has her partner in crime (Maisy) she can be a little terror – up to all sorts.

Take her out of her comfort zone, without Maisy she turns into a different child, very shy, not all that engaging with other children and so so quiet. When Maisy started nursery in September I really noticed a difference in Bella, we went to play groups that she’d usually be happy to run off and play at the whole time but now she was stuck to my side or sat on my lap she didn’t want to play she just wanted me. I’d take her to soft play and the same would happen, she wanted me to take her down the slides where as with Maisy I’d struggle to get them to leave at all.

Then Bella started nursery 2 morning’s a week, it took her a while to settle. She didn’t cry when I dropped her off or anything she was just very quiet and didn’t talk much while she was there, she’d come out and tell me all about her day but stuck to her self and spent a lot of her time at the craft table – I guess that’s just what she enjoy’s. But I wanted them to see the side of her I see, the fun, outgoing, scared of nothing Bella who has a wild imagination and loves to get involved.

I was very shy as a child and think I missed out on a lot so I have been trying a few different things to help her build on her confidence and enjoy herself, after all I think that’s what all parent’s wan – just to see their child happy. Helping your shy child become more confident

First tip is don’t stop doing thing’s, if they seem shy and a little clingy it doesn’t necessarily mean they aren’t still enjoying themselves they are still taking it all in and being around other children (for instance play group) is still good for building up their social skills.

Don’t get cross, It can be frustrating when you have just paid a boom for soft play and they don’t want to play choosing instead to be attached to your leg is a pain but stay calm and give them time.

Go with them, at playgroup get involved sit on the floor and play with them for a little bit, if other children come over involve them in what you’re playing too. Let your child see that it is fun and encourage their imagination to create new games, as they get really engrossed in something you can try to slowly move away not too far always be where they can easily see you.

With nursery we actually upped Bella’s hours when she turned three being there every morning I’ve seen a huge difference in her, she’s still quiet but she does talk, play with the other children and get involved she loves singing and going out for walks with them. We talk about her day at home a lot as well she loves to tell me all about where they’ve been and what they have done by showing my enthusiasm she’s excited for the next day. The other day she even asked if she could stay at nursery to eat her lunch!

Try new thing’s, the girls have recently started swimming lesson’s I was so proud that Bella got into he water without me she didn’t so much swim but she was having fun splashing about and within half an hour was jumping in off the side it was amazing to watch a few months before there is just no way she would have done that. IMG_1159

The most important tip would be not to push them too hard as it can scare them even more, gentle words of encouragement, plenty of praise and lots of time and they will get there.

What about you, is your child shy? Do you have any tips you would share?

 

The Twinkle Diaries
Beau Twins

58 Comments

  1. June 6, 2015 / 12:55 pm

    My youngest is shy when she is in new situations with new people but soon settles down…My eldest just doesn’t care. I am the shy one in our family x
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    • June 12, 2015 / 1:58 pm

      aww I don’t think theres anything wrong with being shy in certain situations I still can be but I just hate the thought of it holding her back x
      Amy recently posted…What my car-less week has taught meMy Profile

  2. June 6, 2015 / 9:02 pm

    Joe was so shy when he was little but encouraged him to build his confidence one step at a time, I don’t know where that shy child has gone I have watched him blossom into the most confident boy, x
    Sarah Christie recently posted…My Weekly Round UpMy Profile

  3. June 6, 2015 / 11:04 pm

    This is a really lovely and very helpful post, with some great tips. It sounds like you are doing all the right things. I am so pleased that Bella is beginning to be less shy and is regaining her confidence. It sounds like she is doing brilliantly. And I love that picture of your girls in their swimming costumes. Cute. Hugs Mrs H xxxx
    Mrs H recently posted…I was hoping….My Profile

  4. June 7, 2015 / 6:37 am

    This is lovely. I sometimes see parents really pushing shy children and as a shy child myself it makes me really sad. I know sometimes it just takes a bit of time to be comfortable! She’s lukcy to have you as a mamma! #SundayStars
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  5. June 7, 2015 / 7:07 am

    Brilliant set of tips for helping the little ones Amy. Mine aren’t usually shy, but we certainly have other challenges and I’d also advocate what you’ve said here xx
    Mummy Tries recently posted…Healthy Wholesome Sugar Free FudgeMy Profile

  6. June 7, 2015 / 7:19 am

    These are great tips, my daughter was very shy and clingy when she was small and it was hard to leave her anywhere as she only wanted to be with me. Gradually she became more confiden with her surroundings, such as nursery and with lots of encougment made new friends, I found having her new friends over to play helped. She is now, at 6, very confident and independent. I think it takes time and patience. Great post I’m glad Bella is now settling in. #SundayStars

    • June 12, 2015 / 2:04 pm

      Thanks that’s how I see it I was shy and although I am not any more it did hold me back as a child and in my early teens I don’t want the same for them x
      Amy recently posted…What my car-less week has taught meMy Profile

  7. June 7, 2015 / 11:43 am

    I was a very shy child. So I am also trying to get my girls to be confident. My youngest is great and has great confident. My eldest is extremely shy.
    She won’t go ahead and do things without her little sister or her best friend.
    I paid for 3 months for football training and she was into football at the time, I took her two or three times and she screamed. She really didn’t like going there. She hated it. It was really frustrating because it cost me near £50 – £60.
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    • June 12, 2015 / 2:05 pm

      oh thats a shame you wasted the money I am sure with small steps and gentle encouragement she will come out of her shell eventually good luck hun x
      Amy recently posted…What my car-less week has taught meMy Profile

  8. June 7, 2015 / 12:36 pm

    I actually have the opposite problem. My child is extroverted to the point where is can sometimes be a problem. I can’t take her anywhere without her wandering around talking to anybody that will listen.
    jeremy@thirstydaddy recently posted…Past Lives of a PreschoolerMy Profile

  9. June 7, 2015 / 3:11 pm

    Lovely post and great tips. My little boy is quite shy when out and about so will give these tips a go.x
    I was super shy as a child but I’m the opposite now so it’s possible to grow out of it!
    #sundaystars

    • June 12, 2015 / 2:06 pm

      Yes definitely I was really shy and although I’m not any more I would still love to be just that little bit more confident as well x
      Amy recently posted…What my car-less week has taught meMy Profile

  10. June 7, 2015 / 6:05 pm

    I think your first point is so important, carry on doing things. Just staying at home where they’re comfortable will never help #sundaystars
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  11. June 7, 2015 / 8:16 pm

    Really useful post. I am naturally shy and try so hard to not show it now I have Sam. He is confident in little groups but shy around lots of people. The gentle approach is so the way forward! #sundaystars x

  12. June 7, 2015 / 8:57 pm

    There is nothing wrong with being shy. I was very shy as a child and am definitely an introvert as an adult. There is an excellent book entitled Quiet: The power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking
    by Susan Cain which I would definitely recommend.

    I did amateur dramatics as a child which I really enjoyed and which really helps me at work these days. I am relatively quiet at work but will happily present to an audience of over 100 confidently and with ease and I actually enjoy it.

    Quiet doesn’t necessarily mean a lack of confidence. If she is happy playing on her own, then she is happy with who she is and happy in her own skin. That’s a great achievement for you as a parent. Be proud of her and of yourself. x
    Pen recently posted…My grandmother, the single motherMy Profile

  13. June 7, 2015 / 9:47 pm

    Great post! S has never really been particularly shy but I’ve seen huge changes in him/his personality since being at nursery 5 mornings a week. He absolutely loves it! There are still moments he gets clingy and is uninterested (at soft play or at a class) but I’ve found the best thing is to leave him be until he’s ready. #sundaystars
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  14. June 7, 2015 / 10:32 pm

    Some brilliant advice here. But on the other hand, you were a shy child and you have turned out just brilliantly. I wouldn’t worry too much… until they turn 18 and start going out clubbing! lol xx

    • June 9, 2015 / 8:34 am

      I see what you mean but as a child I often felt left out, sad and like I could of done so much more and I’d hate the thought of the girls feeling like that x
      Amy recently posted…Sunday Stars 07/06/15My Profile

  15. June 8, 2015 / 1:33 pm

    Hi Amy, very lovely post! Very useful. My daughter who is also Bella (what a beautiful name, right? ;-)) has had the same problem. She was super shy when she was put out of her comfort zone otherwise she was super crazy LOL. But this gets better with the years as she is now 5 years and being at school for almost 1 year has helped her to mature and feel more confident. Thanks for sharing your tips and also thanks for hosting! 🙂
    A Moment with Franca recently posted…Baby’s first stepsMy Profile

  16. June 8, 2015 / 7:41 pm

    Ah bless her I’m glad she is getting a bit more used to things she must miss her sisters too! To be honest my son is so confident he is probably a bit over confident if anything! I think my daughter is less so though so I will bear these tips in mind! x #sundaystars
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  17. June 8, 2015 / 9:06 pm

    Good ideas my son goes to nursery even whilst I’m on maternity leave as I think him socialising without me there really helps him become more confident.

  18. June 8, 2015 / 9:16 pm

    This is so useful. L has become increasingly clingy recently but you are right, doesn’t mean she isn’t taking it all in. Fab tips xx
    Katy recently posted…My Weight Loss Journey – Week 12My Profile

  19. June 9, 2015 / 6:21 am

    Ah bless Bella and what a fantastic mummy you are. although my two have each other as well, it’s so important to engage them with other kids. Freyja can be a bit shy at times and clings on to me a lot. Grace is so much more independent. Some fantastic advice here Hun and I’m so pleased swimming is going so well. We’ve had to delay our sessions until September. #SundayStars 🙂 xxx
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  20. June 9, 2015 / 7:08 am

    A great post and really good tips! It sounds like she’s really turning a corner with her shyness 🙂 so cute that she has a partner in crime at home and they’re so adorable! Mim x #twinklytuesday
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  21. June 10, 2015 / 7:19 am

    Super tips, Amy. It sounds like you have done a fantastic job and helping her to regain confidence. How wonderful that she managed to get into the water herself at her swimming lesson. And I spy a cute little tutu swimming cossie. Lola has the same one. Too cute! x
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  22. June 10, 2015 / 8:10 am

    It’s funny you talk about kids being outwardly confident but shy behind the scenes – my girls are very much like that and I guess I am too. Our nursery recommended ideally a couple of days at least, not just for economic reasons but to build up a relationship with the children and to provide the continuity they need at that age. Both of them adore nursery so it’s getting them away at the end of the day we struggle with. They also recommended spreading out the days they were there over the week so that it became a more regular feature, not a once a week scary occasion to be feared.#kidscorner
    Kate , Baby Routes recently posted…30 Days Wild- Day 8: Making mapsMy Profile

  23. June 10, 2015 / 11:42 am

    Really lovely tips. I agree not to push the child. They go through phases of being clingy as well and not comfortable going off on their own in new situations. Thanks so much for hosting #KidsCorner x

  24. All 3 of mine have been extremely shy, it has taken patience and gentle encouragement. It is extra rewarding seeing them come out of their shell in social situations. I also feel it is important not to label them as ‘shy’ or apologise for their ‘shyness’, it just takes time #kids corner
    Mackenzie Glanville (reflectionsfromme.com) recently posted…believe in youMy Profile

  25. June 10, 2015 / 8:04 pm

    Miss C is very shy. It takes her ages to make new friends and she would rather stand with me then talk to new children. I was the same and to be honest, i am still am. I have learnt to leave her and accept her decision. I don’t want to force her into a situation where she is uncomfortable. It is frustrating because i don’t want Miss C to be like me but pushing her won’t help. #KidsCorner
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  26. June 10, 2015 / 8:40 pm

    Great post, and very interesting to read. My Lottie isn’t shy – but lacks confidence and therefore she finds social situations very daunting. She has always been clingy and struggled to socialise. Starting playgroup has helped her so much. You’re right about encouragement and I definitely try as much as I can. Fab post xx

  27. June 11, 2015 / 8:00 pm

    You are doing all the right things. It’s so hard as parents as we just don’t want them to struggle in life. I think also emphasising that being shy is completely normal and a great quality too (not everyone likes a shouty outgoing person) and they’re are great listeners and observers. Not sure how you emphasise that to a tiny though! This comes from a narurally shy person who has only just started to embrace it, wish I had done earlier. #kidscorner
    Doctomum recently posted…How Not To Be a D**k In a LiftMy Profile

  28. June 12, 2015 / 1:30 pm

    Its a wise decision to have a personal blog that which revolves around families and keeps you fit bodily and mentally and makes you relaxed after a hard days of work schedule. Its hard to keep track, but you find it more difficult when you have children’s as young as 2,3 and 4. You have proven to be a great Mom. God Bless and keep us updated.

  29. June 12, 2015 / 2:30 pm

    Thank you for some great tips, sounds like Bella is doing really well :D. Monkey is okay at home and with his little friends but when he’s in other social situations he can be shy so I will definitely be using some of these. Thank you #kidscorner
    MudpieFridays recently posted…Paulton’s Park & Peppa Pig WorldMy Profile

  30. June 12, 2015 / 8:23 pm

    What a wonderfully compassionate post. I’ve had to explain to my children that their occasional bouts of nervousness do not qualify as shyness. I think it’s important to share with children the sorts of insights you share here, so that they don’t overwhelm the shy children among them. Thanks for linking with #TwinklyTuesday.
    Sadia recently posted…Toddler Thursday: Parenting After TeachingMy Profile

  31. June 24, 2015 / 10:30 am

    You’re so right, both of my boys (2 and 3.5) can be shy and clingy, depending upon what else is going on in their heads. I am ruthless at dropping them off at nursery (or I’d never get to work) but always make sure that a member of staff gives them a cuddle to ease the transition. In any other situation, I just say how I also feel shy in new or busy places, and there is no shyness that a cuddle can’t fix, eh? Because it will be too soon that they will be too big for cuddles with their mummy.x
    #wellbeingwednesday
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  32. September 4, 2015 / 8:41 pm

    Lots of good ideas. I was so so so painfully shy growing up (and now a bit) so it’s really important my girls aren’t as bad. Socialising has been a big help for my little one.

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