Why giving your child a strong sense of Self-Efficacy is more important than trying to make him Happy!
“Sensei, my name is Dean. I was your student 15 years ago. I’m calling because I want to thank you for giving me the foundation for a wonderful life. The training I received from you has helped me in innumerable ways. I have a wonderful life and I don’t believe it would have turned out this way without the training that I received from you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.” Text from a call that came into our school in June of 2011 Self-efficacy is the centerpiece of renowned psychologist Albert Bandura’s social cognitive theory. It is the belief you have in your ability to succeed in a given situation. This belief will determine how you think, feel, behave, and motivate yourself. When your child has a strong sense of self-efficacy he will be happy. Gone will be his mood swings, negative emotional states and adverse physical reactions to difficult and challenging situations. When your child has a STRONG sense of self-efficacy: • He or she will view challenging problems as tasks to be mastered rather than as threats to be avoided. • He will develop an intrinsic interest and deep engrossment in the activities in which he participates. • He will set challenging goals and maintain a strong sense of commitment to them. • He will recover quickly his sense of efficacy after setbacks and disappointments. • He will heighten and sustain his efforts in the face of failure. • He will attribute failure to insufficient effort or deficient knowledge and skills, which he can acquire. • He will approach threatening situations with assurance that he can control them. The result will be that your child will experience an array of personal accomplishments, reduced stress and lower vulnerability to depression. And when self-efficacy is thoroughly instilled it will stay with him his entire life and, just as in Dean’s case (see above), give him the foundation for a wonderful life.