Let’s talk about self-confidence

UNIside | 2022-10-17
If you ask, most people will tell you that young people today are more swollen-headed than the previous generations, but a new research shows that Hungarian students are much less confident in themselves than their elders.

Low self-assurance can impact people’s chances on the labour market and translate into competitive disadvantages at international level. Helping students boost their confidence is therefore crucial to assist them to overcome difficulties in everyday life and be overall happier and more successful.

This is exactly what Laura Komócsin, executive manager of Business Coach Kft. is doing, highlighting the issue through a social responsibility initiative. Laura holds free Confidence Booster workshops for students studying at university, as well as primary and secondary school level. They also developed a free app, available on their website (in Hungarian for the time being).

Photo: Pixabay

Laura’s team conducted the Hungary-wide survey on self-confidence in which respondents were asked to assess themselves in 20 areas. The lack of confidence was most evident in these:

  • 90% of students wish they received more positive feedback. Bear in mind that sometimes a nice word, a positive comment can make wonders. It doesn’t cost anything. All you need to do is pay a little attention, and the young person will grow in self-assurance in front of your eyes, while their relationship with you, the grown-up, will also improve, whether you are a parent, teacher or sports coach.
  • Interestingly, the survey showed the greatest difference in that students are taking decisions slower (scoring 3.58 on a scale of 1 to 5, compared to the average 2.53). However, this might not reflect reality, as respondents factored in not only their own assessment of themselves, but the external expectations as well.
  • The survey highlighted the fact that students are less likely to ask questions or share their knowledge with others out of a fear of strong competition and rivalry. Students should be aware that knowledge is gained by listening to teachers’ explanations, asking questions, practicing, and an even higher level of understanding is reflected in their ability to explain things to their peers.
  • Almost three quarters of students try to behave as they are expected. For them, it is important to proactively seek clarification on what those expectations are, and to be assertive and say no to tasks they consider they should not be doing — including fulfilling their parents’ dreams.
  • The survey also made it clear that two students out of three rely greatly on their existing relationships and will do anything and everything to keep these going. They are shy in new company, which explains why they stay in the same school despite their school results, even when they could swap easily to a more performing school or apply to study in higher education. In this regard, the role of parents is paramount, and if there is an emerging negative pattern, it might be worth talking to a psychologist.

Laura and her colleagues have plans to extend the survey to foreign students as well, for better understanding the results in an international context. Other plans include more workshops to school-aged children, especially to those about to finish and embark on their higher education journey.