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Tips to Parent Your Shy Child – Behavioural Therapy

11.05.2021 | 10:43 am
Behavioural Therapy

Shy children are common and natural, but it isn’t always necessary to parent them in the same way as you would an extrovert. While they might not become social butterflies, they could be intuitive and decisive in other ways. Moreover, there are certain methods you can use to help them in social settings.

Children are on a spectrum of shyness. Some children are shyer than others. In principle, being shy is perfectly normal. However, it could pose a problem if your child isn’t able to do all the activities they want to or is unhappy. 

Why is your child shy? 

It mostly has to do with the personality of your child at birth, but a negative experience can increase it. In fact, if your child suddenly becomes shy it could be because of an event or occurrence that has triggered it.

Defining a shy personality

  • Empathetic
  • Self-reliant
  • Thoughtful 
  • Take long to undertake new situations
  • Fear of socialising easily

Keeping these traits in mind, it’s important to help shy children at their pace and not to force something upon them. 

Here are some tips from experts on how to help a shy child:

Give them tips on entering a conversation

Be patient with your child and let them take in their surroundings. If you a group of children chatting, allow them to approach the group at their own pace and chime in with pre-decided talking points. For example, if the children are talking about their favorite cartoon, tell them that can express their opinion and say that “I like that cartoon” as well.

Increase their self-esteem

Always tell your children how brave they were in the past, and how they can repeat that bravery. Positive reinforcement always helps.

Give them more social independence

Prompt your child to do things more independently. You could let them speak to the waiter or interact with staff at the toy store. Organize playdates every now and then. It will help them gain confidence and a sense of self-assurance.

Praise them often

Even praising them for small actions such as waving or saying thank you can help. In case they aren’t able to say anything, talk it out with them to assess why. Let them know that they are feeling shy right now and it’s alright, it happens. It is something that they can overcome.

Be a good role model 

Your child will observe how you interact with others, so try being as friendly as possible with those around you. When you display outgoing behaviour, your child might follow.

It is important to seek professional advice when your child: 

  • Insists on not going to school
  • Has a lot of trouble making friends
  • Doesn’t want to go to birthday parties or sports practice
  • Doesn’t like their shyness

For further Behavioural Therapy consultation, book an appointment with experts at Neuropedia. Call 04 343 1113.