​If you want to raise kids who are confident in their individuality, you have to consider their character. Kids who have a strong sense of right and wrong are more likely to be comfortable in their own skin. Families can help by teaching positive character traits to their children.

When kids know they are making good choices and doing the right thing, they’ll have strong self-esteem. When kids identify with positive character traits such as kindness, compassion, respect, trustworthiness, honesty, and fairness, they’ll have a positive view of themselves.

Strong character also helps kids as they get older and are faced with situations in which their peers make poor choices. Kids who have a strong sense of right and wrong will be more comfortable doing the right thing or speaking out when something is wrong. Sometimes, that may mean going against the crowd. That can be difficult if you don’t have a strong sense of individuality.

One way to bring these lessons home is through modeling. Parents can model the things they want their children to do, such as using kind words and sharing with others. Families can also choose books and other media that highlight positive character.

Expose them to a variety of hobbies and interests
In order to have a strong sense of individuality, kids need to know what they’re passionate about. If kids are given opportunities to learn about their interests, they’ll be able to pursue those interests with confidence.

Talk about extracurricular activities with your child. Offer a variety of options and encourage them to try one or two. Sports are a great way for your child to learn about themselves while staying active. You may also consider dance lessons or music and art classes.

Beyond organized classes and teams, expose your child to a variety of topics at home. Explore home skills like cooking, crafting, gardening, and carrying for pets. Read books on a variety of topics to see what most interests your child. Share your own hobbies and interests with your child.

The more things your child is exposed to, the better they will understand their own interests. Be sure to encourage this exploration to foster individuality.

Celebrate their uniqueness
It’s important for children to feel like their individuality is a positive thing. Families can support this by celebrating their child’s unique characteristics and interests.

If your child loves animals, foster this interest by checking out animal books at the library, watching documentaries together, and visiting animals at local zoos or sanctuaries. Participating in your child’s interest will show them that you value their individuality.

An even simpler way to show a child they matter? Listen. Children are often passionate and knowledgeable about the things they care about. Having an adult in their life who will listen to them talk about the things they love will go a long way. It encourages them to be themselves because they know they’ll be supported by people who care about them.

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