Your child needs to have hobbies. They can spark further interests, help them meet like-minded friends, and ultimately expand their horizons and sense of self.
Sadly, self-confidence issues in children can be common right the way through the teen years, and the pandemic has likely exacerbated these problems. Hobbies can often be an escape from these issues and remind your child that they have something worthwhile to contribute to the world, a place to belong, and people who care about them other than their parents.
The first step is often the most challenging here; getting your child into interesting hobbies in the first place. Here are some suggestions that might help you facilitate things.
Mention Existing Strengths
Many children are hesitant to take up hobbies as they feel like they’d be doing something ‘new’. The fear of failure can be prominent.
However, it’s worth reminding them that hobbies don’t need to be a blank slate in their lives. Instead, the right interest can be an expansion of the skills they already have. That way, they will likely hit the ground running when they start and broaden their horizons.
Is your child quite creative? Arts and crafts might speak to them. Does your kid love to sing? Music lessons could have a distinct appeal. Do they often play pretend? A drama club might help them craft more interesting and nuanced stories and characters. Help them approach things with this mindset because often, they already have relevant tools at their disposal.
Showcase the Cool Factor
All hobbies are cool. However, some kids might not feel confident about expressing their passions and interests, fearing teasing or judgement from their peers.
That said, it’s simply the case that some hobbies are simply too cool to shut up about. These trick and stunt scooters are a good example of that, with stock suitable for all levels of ability, from beginner to advanced. Each offering is affordable and available in various colours, as well as has various specifications like easy handling, lightweight, or more suitable for learning tricks. Others are flagged by their best seller status too.
All hobbies have a ‘cool’ factor, whether performance-based, learning new skills, or having mastery over slick scooters. Try to emphasise that point to your kids; they should feel empowered to partake rather than be timid about things.
Involve Their Friends
Despite most children secretly wanting more friends, many become shy when that prospect is in front of them. Those feelings are intensified if they’re the new person in a club for hobbies.
Unfortunately, children have been playing with their friends less recently, so involving existing members of their social circle might help draw the focus away from meeting ‘new people’, temporarily and instead help them improve their current relationships. Familiar faces can also be a comfort and slowly help ease them into a new environment.
The parents of your kid’s friends may also appreciate you, including their children. Ultimately, this strategy makes hobbies a group activity for your kids and their friends rather than a solo, nerve-wracking experience. Hobbies can cause anxiety despite the opportunities they afford, so it’s a good idea to be sensitive to that and build a support network your child can benefit from.