Gaining Confidence as a Homeschooler
The best way of gaining confidence as a homeschooler is to just begin! Because confidence builds as you go.
Waiting around for confidence to show up is never a good idea. And in fact, that’s not how confidence works.
I’ve come to realize that a feeling of confidence is what homeschoolers want more than anything else.
Here’s the lowdown…confidence is a state of mind. Confidence comes from feelings of well-being along with belief in yourself. It really means having faith in yourself and your ability to take on a certain role or accomplish a certain task.
For homeschoolers, the real question is this: how can we gain confidence with something that we don’t have much experience with?
Gaining Confidence as a Homeschooler
In this episode of the Art of Homeschooling podcast, I share 3 specific ideas that will help you with gaining confidence no matter where you are on your homeschooling journey.
In my years as a homeschool mentor and parenting coach, I’ve learned something about confidence.
More than confidence, what we really want is courage!
The courage to take action without being able to control the specific outcome. The courage to “feel the fear and do it anyway.”
As life coach Jodie Moore says:
Consider homeschool planning. No amount of planning will give us perfect homeschooling days. And we won’t even know if we’re on the right track with the plan until we try it out!
We have to jump in, give the lessons a try, and see how they go. And we have to observe our children in order to make adjustments as we go along.
We all have strengths and weaknesses. But that shouldn’t keep us from feeling confident. As I see it, our main job in life is to accept ourselves for who we are and love our WHOLE selves. Not just the parts we approve of. To accept it all.
And here’s something interesting to keep in mind: the people around us are reflecting back what we’re projecting out there. So if we feel unsure or insecure, they’ll pick up on that and possibly question us and our decisions and motives even more. Yes, even our children!
But other people’s thoughts don’t define us nor do they determine our confidence in ourselves. We get to do that!
So here are my top 3 tips for gaining confidence as a homeschooler:
#1: Be Willing to Make Mistakes
As life coach Marie Forleo says, “confidence comes from taking action.” Because getting into action is the only way to figure things out! And, in order to do that, we have to be vulnerable. We have to be willing to put ourselves out there and even make mistakes in front of our kids, to not be good at something, to be vulnerable.
Being a good homeschooling parent is not about not making mistakes. You will make mistakes! We all do. Mistakes are inevitable.
Confidence includes knowing what to do, how to keep moving forward and not give up, when your day begins to fall apart.
#2: Visualize Your Success
What does a successful homeschool lesson look like to you? Imagine how you want your lessons to go.
What feelings are you going for? Connection, focus, playfulness?
Also visualize what to do when mistakes happen!
Visualize yourself in problem-solving mode. Remember, it’s never all or nothing.
I remember in our early years of homeschooling, I would feel so worn down by my boys bickering with each other during circle time. Then some days, they’d whine and complain about starting lessons. I’d feel so worn down that I’d give up! The negativity would feel like a wave overtaking me on those days.
But when I began visualizing our homeschool mornings at night before drifting off to sleep, I was able to regroup when things seemed to begin to fall apart.
Instead of trying to do everything I could to get them to stop whining and bickering, I accepted what would happen and visualized what I would do in response. Some days it was adding in an element of surprise. Others it was taking a short break or using humor to diffuse the situation.
This approach proved to be way more fun, successful, and enjoyable for all. And it all started with acceptance and visualizing things going well.
#3: Find a Coach or Mentor
What can a coach and mentor offer you?
Getting to know yourself, laughing at yourself, reflecting back what you’re doing well, knowing that you’re not alone by hearing how your coach handled a similar situation, and giving you realistic tried-and-true suggestions to try.
The best coach or mentor is someone who is simply further along on the homeschooling journey than you are and can help you not only accept exactly who you are as a homeschooling parent but also help you feel good about yourself and make a plan for moving forward. This will help you build your confidence as a homeschooler exponentially. 🙂
As a mentor, I work with homeschooling parents in three ways:
- one-on-one Mentor Sessions can really help you get unstuck and gain confidence right away. I’ve helped hundreds of homeschoolers from all over the world in mentor sessions either on Zoom or over the phone.
- the Inspired at Home community offers masterclasses, coaching, and a community of other heart-centered homeschoolers on the same path so you can learn as you go along.
- And the Taproot Teacher Training every August offers an immersive in-person gathering that’s like a homeschool teacher training, personal retreat, and a weekend at summer camp all rolled into one amazing experience.
Whatever you do, I encourage you to consider where you are with your confidence.
The Truth About Confidence
The truth about confidence is that it doesn’t come from thinking you’re really good at something.
It comes from self-awareness and a realistic sense of your capabilities. Confidence is a feeling, and one that you can embrace today just by believing you’re willing to try and learn as you go.
I hope that the 3 tips I’ve shared in this episode can help you build your confidence! Because gaining confidence as a homeschooler is really about knowing that you can handle the emotional outcome of whatever your day brings.
Wishing you well on your homeschooling journey. See you next time!
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