How a 10 year old inspired a self confidence blog post..

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Yesterday, I took a tour of a prospective primary school ahead of my eldest starting school next year. On arrival, I was surprised when the head teacher announced that the 30 or so parents would be split in to groups of 6 and each group would be shown around by 2 of the 10 year olds currently attending the school.

No teachers accompanying them.

Just a piece of paper telling them which order to show us round in so we didn’t all end up in the same classroom at the same time.

We were told to ask as many questions to the children as we liked.

Can you imagine, even as an adult RIGHT NOW, being faced with this scenario?

  • Do a presentation on a subject you know well but with zero notes
  • It will be to a group of people you’ve never met who, by the way, are likely to be a) feeling superior to you, and b) judging you every step of the way to make sure you are good enough
  • Be prepared for a constant stream of questions all the way through (which could be quite personal about your colleagues/bosses/likes and dislikes..)

But these kids were AMAZING. They handled us with an air of confidence and not arrogance, they were knowledgeable and informed without being robotic, passionate but not over the top.  I was sold by their ability to talk clearly, concisely and with personality – they smiled, laughed and listened intently to our nervous parent questions on bullying, discipline and extra curricular activities. Anything they didn’t know they weren’t ashamed to admit and made a point of flagging it to a teacher on our return to the main group.

It got me thinking about self confidence and how a lack of it stops most of us from going ahead and doing what we really want to do. It’s not an easy thing to achieve, most of us form our views on self belief from a very early age but it’s so important to try to remember to grasp it whenever we can.  Even in an interview situation, when we are asked to talk about the thing we know the best- ourselves- our nerves take over and we can end up sounding incompetent, uninterested or dull.

So maybe we need to remember to be a little bit more like these kids – after all, in 10 years time they’ll be out in the world of work, eager to climb the career ladder, taking up opportunities and not being afraid to be challenged.  

  • Believe in your abilities
  • Focus on the positives
  • Be YOU and don’t compare yourself to others
  • Put yourself out there

By the way, I’m putting my son’s name down for this school…if these are the kind of children they’re turning out – we want in!

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