3 Last-Minute Confidence-Building Gifts For Kids: Positively Influence For A Lifetime!

photo-75MERRY CHRISTMAS! HAPPYHOLLYJOLLYHOLIDAYRUSHRUSH!

Before you head out for last-minute holiday gifts for the kids on your list…

Consider these confidence-building gifts that could positively influence kids of any age… for a lifetime. 

OK, so they may not be asking Santa for these – and no, you won’t find these on any Hot Gifts list. And they likely won’t be featured by brands positioning for your holiday dollars or purchasing power – at least not for these reasons.

I created The BOLD! Factor® to inspire success with self-leadership, ownership & confidence – self-empowerment for emerging leaders and motivated professionals.

For adults. Not for kids. So…

Why Suggest Confidence-Building Gifts For Kids? 

We all know where self-confidence can begin and flourish… yes, right there… early on… in quiet moments when kids still have a chance to dream their own dreams… before adults try to decide their future for them.

Whether you’re in that favorite category of retail marketers everywhere: professional aunts or uncles buying for nieces and nephews… or a wise grandparent or holiday-crazed Mom or Dad tired of tracking down top-selling toys as they become burnt out and the toys become sold out.

Here’s my favorite solution or two – ok, three – which kids on your list just might eventually love…

photo-833 LAST-MINUTE CONFIDENCE-BUILDING GIFTS TO POSITIVELY INFLUENCE KIDS… FOR A LIFETIME!

…along with few DO ONE BOLD THING action steps to eliminate the guess-work… and hopefully positively impact YOU. 

! 1.  THEIR OWN FULL-LENGTH MIRROR

The greatest gift we give ourselves, when it comes to happiness and success, leading and living the life we want? CONFIDENCE.

Confidence is Believing In Yourself(!) even in that moment – especially in that moment – when it’s easier not to.

Give A Gift To Build Self-Confidence. Their Own Full-Length Mirror.

With ever-decreasing privacy, and ever-increasing parading of kids through social media as magical mini-me’s living up to our mega vision of what success and happiness could look like in their amazing life… (oh, the pressure!)

Take a step back, and let the real gift in this gift be whatever reflects in THEIR view.

The simple gift of a Full-Length Mirror gives kids the gift of quietly discovering, play-acting, pretending, creating, wondering,  dreaming, dancing, making faces, smiling, crying…

… learning to love themselves just as they are… as they start learning to feel comfortable in their own skin now… building their own confidence for whatever comes later.

In mirrored self-reflection, simple smiles transform as bigger questions:

How will I ask her to prom? Will I get married on a tropical island? What kind of business will I own someday? What do I really want to do when I grow up?

DO ONE BOLD THING:  Buy a full-length mirror. Simple or decorative. Hang it on the back of their bedroom door. So they can close out the world, eliminate distractions (yes, even closing out you ;) as they immerse in their own little dreamland…

Where they can learn to create their own happiness, believe in their own greatness, build their own self-confidence, love who they see reflecting back…

And they just might have a greater chance to become adults who are comfortable in their own skin, staying true to who they are, while also seeing the greatness in others.

(I could say more on this but you get it, and I didn’t intend this to become a lesson in self-leadership… only in positive-influence gift giving ;).

Quiet time for you. Dream time for them. 

!! 2.  THEIR OWN VOICE RECORDER

As adults we know the importance of trusting our own voice, developing our own point of view, and the confidence it takes to speak up for ourselves in both everyday and challenging situations in our work and life:

Give A Gift To Build Voice Confidence. Their Own Voice Recorder.

So often we learn this on the go, in action, in front of others, which is when fear and impostor syndrome threaten to set in, to overwhelm, stifling our best efforts as we struggle in self-doubt, self-sabotage… often silencing our own voice, in some cases, before we’ve even had a chance to develop our own point of view.

What if kids had an opportunity to build their confident voice naturally, individually, getting use to that not-at-first-familiar tone, adjusting for whatever emphasis they want, becoming their own ME in their own special way, thru play?

DO ONE BOLD THING:  Gift a Voice Recorder. One they can operate on their own. I’m not writing to promote any brands – only sharing from experience: when our kids were growing up the Fischer Price recorder was exactly the gift that inspired this idea – way back then – some of the best strategies are exactly that: timeless!

Get ready to smile as you start hearing singing and crazy-fun voices and new characters coming to life in your own home… inspiring new personaes, new possibilities… 

*Welcome Ladies & Gentlemen!* or *Introducing The Star Of The Show!* or *And The Winner Is…* or *Everyone find their seats, quiet please, shhhh, it’s time for class…*

A much safer way to build confidence… trying out new voices as kids… rather than getting to our stage of life when it can feel like too big a risk to test a new voice, or voice a new idea, or share our own fresh perspective

And so we don’t… because it’s too risky… and because it’s just easier not to.

!!! 3.  SHOES THEY WANT TO MOVE IN

As adults we know the best way to get unstuck when we’re struggling – Get Moving! DO Something! Take Action!

Sure, at times introspection calls for stopping, getting quiet, thinking, reflecting… and then at some point you’ll need to get moving again… !

Give A Gift To Build Confidence In Action! Shoes They Want To Move In.

I do believe in giving in to brand-passion when it’s justified (and hopefully when it’s on sale!) If the shoes they really want are the ones that will inspire them to get outside and get moving, playing, trying out new sports at least long enough to experience being part of an action-focused team…

Investing in favorite shoes they can play in and want to move in can be money well spent!

Teach kids early on the importance of choosing outfits they want to move in… starting with shoes they can move fast in!

DO ONE BOLD THING:  Buy whatever favorite shoes they want to move in – shoes they LOVE – shoes they’ll want to walk in, run in, play hard in.

Oh and let them get dirty!

Great minds and active bodies are not built by stepping around mud puddles, staying off wet grass, or walking inside the cracks on finally-dry sidewalks.

Do gifts of Full-Length Mirrors, Voice Recorders and Shoes They Want To Move In actually play a role in helping to build and reinforce kids’ Self-Confidence? Passion? Success? Happiness? 

Discover the positive impact for yourself… 

I’d love to hear what happens when you do!

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© 1993-2014  Ann Ulrich, THE BOLD! FACTOR® Catalyst, Strategist, Leader, Keynote Speaker & Mentor: “Navigating Success With Confidence! Self-Empowerment For Emerging Leaders & Motivated Professionals.” Subscribe to receive blog posts at:  AnnUlrich.com

Owning Your Success Amidst The Ultimate Success Stifling, Confidence Crushing, Fear Fueling, Influence Immobilizing Impact Of Impostor Syndrome

photo-46Years ago, when I first learned of Impostor Syndrome, I knew I too had (gulp!) experienced the lockjaw impact of its unrelenting grip.

Sound familiar?

Yes, Impostor Syndrome is real.

And yes, you are imminently capable of the Success you imagine for yourself …and yes, you deserve to own the SUCCESS YOU HAVE ALREADY ACCOMPLISHED!

Herein lies your challenge and your opportunity:

Owning It. With Confidence.

Owning Your Success… With Confidence! 

I am writing this post to introduce you to what has become one of my favorites among many great business-and-life-influencing books I’ve read: *THE SECRET THOUGHTS OF SUCCESSFUL WOMEN: Why Capable People Suffer From The Impostor Syndrome And How To Thrive In Spite Of It.* by Valerie Young, Ed.D.

First things first: Impostor Syndrome is NOT a Women-only derailer. 

It’s an equal opportunity success crusher for Men and Women – a potentially devastating confidence destroyer – knowing no bounds related to stage of work or life. 

In fact, I’m realizing now the concepts and realities of Impostor Syndrome may in fact be a subliminal driver behind everything I’ve created in my own business since 1993, including THE BOLD! FACTOR® CONFIDENCE and in work I’ll continue to create in this now-and-next stage of my business – inspiring, encouraging, championing and guiding inspired people like you to Own Your Success… With Confidence! The heart and soul of The BOLD! Factor all along.

BOLD Truth: You can create phenomenal success when you own your success.

These qualifiers (expressions you may be unknowingly crediting your hard-earned success to!) drive my passion for helping people claim their confidence and own their success… 

Valerie Young points out in her book the fascinating way Impostor Syndrome reveals: “in denying the existence of evidence of success in your own life… the problem is your compulsion to explain your success away with qualifiers:

photo-34*It was only because they like me… I was in the right place at the right time… It was luck… I don’t deserve this… Someone made a terrible mistake… I had a lot of connections… If I can do this, anyone can… It is only a matter of time before I am found out… I am a fraud… A fake… Phew, I fooled them again!*”

In her book, Young (who refers to herself as a recovering impostor and invites you to Join The Club!) notes the co-discoverers of Impostor Syndrome, Pauline Clance and Suzanne Imes, identified four coping and protecting mechanisms: diligence and hard work, holding back, charm, and procrastination. In her work, Valerie has observed three more: maintaining a low or ever-changing profile, never finishing, and self-sabotage.

OUCH.

Any of those ring true for you? A few sure do for me. My work is and will continue to be better for this discovery. I hope the same for you, too.

Last night I picked up the phone and called author, now friend, Valerie Young.

It was a wonderful call, as she referred to it: “meeting a kindred spirit!” Valerie had some good advice for me on how to tackle writing my book, and what worked for her. We agreed it’s the hardest work either of us have done. We talked about where we’re at and our visions of what’s next.

A few more expressions – this time from accomplished people tossing their success to the wind – with powerful feelings of impostor-induced self-doubt. Sound familiar?

Who would think Meryl Streep would ever get cold feet at the beginning of every project, telling a reporter: “Why would anyone want to see me again in a movie? I don’t know how to act anyway, so why am I doing this?”

Or Mike Myers expecting the no-talent police: “At any time I still expect that the no-talent police will come and arrest me.”

Yes, even our beloved Maya Angelou: “I have written eleven books, but each time I think, ‘Uh-Oh, they’re going to find out now. I’ve run a game on everybody, and they’re going to find me out.'”

If you know someone who might benefit from knowing about Valerie Young’s book, I hope you will share this post with them. It’s the reason I paused my own book writing this morning, to spread the word – with, for, and through you – on how you can create massive Success & Happiness when you learn to release the grip of Impostor Syndrome… by owning your success with confidence.

Your Success is NOT about Luck. YOU earned it!

Thanks for stopping by and for sharing any Aha’s with us in the comments below… or not… as you wish. This is one uber-personal subject, that’s for sure. Till we meet again:

IMG_1621Do One BOLD Thing.

Own Your Success… With Confidence.

IT’S UP TO YOU!

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© 1993-2017 Ann Ulrich   AnnUlrich.com

Photos:  MASK: David and I found this glass mask during the fun week of our daughter Natalie’s and Dan’s wedding in Playa Del Carmen. And once we pick up a fabulous leather mask like one we found in Italy, we’ll have started a new collection. Masks – as art – can be fascinating!  RAZZLE DAZZLE FORTUNE COOKIE: A favorite blingy gift I’m inspired by everyday, sharing it with you here as a reminder that your Success is not about Luck. Own Your Success With Confidence.™ YOU earned it!