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Kid Confidence


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About the Author

Eileen Kennedy-Moore (Author)
Eileen Kennedy-Moore, PhD, is a clinical psychologist based in Princeton, NJ, and a mom of four. A trusted expert on children's feelings and friendships, Kennedy-Moore is a professor for The Great Courses, serves on the advisory board for Parents magazine, and blogs for Psychology Today, PBS Parents, and US News & World Report. This is her sixth book. Learn more at or


"Kid Confidence is a must-read parenting book! Eileen offers keen insight into how to ease a child's harsh self-focus, which is the foundation for raising an emotionally healthy child."
--Maureen Healy, author of The Emotionally Healthy Child--Maureen Healy
"Kid Confidence is packed with surprising and realistic advice about how we can help kids stop worrying about if they are good enough. In her uniquely wonderful way, Kennedy-Moore also gives us the confidence to handle any parenting challenge."
--Diane Debrovner, deputy editor at Parents magazine--Diane Debrovner
"An exciting alternative to most books about self-esteem. Eileen Kennedy-Moore helps parents boost their child's skills in the critical areas of making friends, making choices, and mastering the ups and downs of the learning process.;Every parent, grandparent, and school counselor can benefit from the specific tips and guidance in this book. Wise, compassionate, and grounded in the latest research, Kid Confidence delivers on its promise to help children develop authentic confidence."
--Meg Selig, NCC, a retired counselor, and author of Changepower!--Meg Selig, NCC
"In her warm, accessible style, Eileen Kennedy-Moore has turned conventional thinking about self-esteem on its head. Speaking directly to parents, and to anyone who works with or cares about children, Kid Confidence makes a compelling argument for turning away from frantic attempts to pump up our children's self-esteem. Instead, Kennedy-Moore lays out a plan to address the need for connection, competence, and choice--three critical factors at the heart of a ?quiet ego.' It is possible to dive into any one chapter and emerge armed with practical suggestions. Better yet, read the whole book. This one is a game-changer."
--Dawn Huebner, PhD, psychologist, parent coach, and author of Outsmarting Worry--Dawn Huebner, PhD
"In this book, clinical psychologist Kennedy-Moore (What's My Child Thinking?, 2019, etc.) promises readers a wide range of practical and effective parenting strategies. But first, the author takes pains to debunk some key concepts of contemporary child-rearing philosophy--the worst of which, she says, is the idea that one must compulsively and universally offer kids uninterrupted affirmation in order to build up their self-esteem.... Kennedy-Moore addresses the topics of making parental connections, assessing and building children's competencies, and helping kids to become more decisive and deal with bullying. Throughout, she employs a clear, concise prose style and an unfailing directness, typified in lines such as 'As parents, we can't protect our children from having bad things happen to them.'.... A wise and realistic program for instilling genuine self-esteem in children."
--Kirkus Reviews--Kirkus Reviews
"In this enlightening and refreshing book, Eileen Kennedy-Moore puts forth the premise that we can't just 'teach' our kids to have self-confidence, but rather that we grow it with them through our relationships. Parents and teachers alike will benefit from the book's powerful message that our connection with our kids is the foundation of self-esteem."
--Mona Delahooke, PhD, clinical psychologist, and author of Social and Emotional Development in Early Intervention--Mona Delahooke, PhD
"Not just another parenting book! Eileen Kennedy-Moore relies on solid research to reveal why much of what we've been taught about raising self-confident children is actually counterproductive. Kid Confidence offers a wealth of wisdom and practical strategies aimed at helping parents succeed at instilling their children with authentic self-esteem through reducing self-focus and harsh self-judgment."
--Mary K. Alvord, PhD, psychologist, and coauthor of Conquer Negative Thinking for Teens and Resilience Builder Program for Children and Adolescents--Mary K. Alvord, PhD
"The best parenting resource I have seen in several years. Too many children and teens suffer from a negative inward focus on themselves that is self-critical and self-judgmental. Outwardly, they may seem anxious or depressed, worried or discouraged. Child and family psychologist Eileen Kennedy-Moore shows parents the road to helping children develop real self-esteem and ?a quiet ego' through connection, competence, and choice. The book is firmly evidence-based, developmentally based, practically based, and it is fundamentally wise and compassionate."
--Carol D. Goodheart, EdD, former president of the American Psychological Association--Carol D. Goodheart, EdD
"Traditional approaches to building self-esteem and confidence often encourage a rather egoic approach that can inadvertently make children more self-focused, insecure, and unhappy. Drawing on the latest theory and research in psychology, Eileen Kennedy-Moore offers insights and advice by which parents can foster their children's well-being by promoting their social connections, competence, and feelings of choice and control. Not only are these the pillars of happiness and lifelong well-being, but when parents focus on these important considerations, self-esteem and self-confidence take care of themselves."
--Mark R. Leary, PhD, Garonzik Family Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Duke University, and author of The Curse of the Self--Mark R. Leary, PhD
"What child couldn't use some help through the rocky road of childhood? Be it making friends, making good decisions, or having a can-do attitude, Eileen Kennedy-Moore skillfully guides parents in how to help children develop authentic self-esteem, and build their resilience to meet the inevitable rough patches and pressures of growing up today. Kid Confidence provides vital understanding and strategies to cultivate confident kids that parents can confidently send out into the world...with pride."
--Susan Newman, PhD, social psychologist, and author of Little Things Long Remembered and The Book of NO--Susan Newman, PhD

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