My daughter's teacher always stressed to me the importance of allowing my daughter make her own choices. I decided to put this to the test at home, and from my experience, I can only concur wholeheartedly with this idea. Whenever we encountered a task she didn't like, or didn't want to do, instead of questioning or pushing her into it, I would give my daughter the time and opportunity to make a choice. I would often lead her by offering choices, "would you like to do task A or task B?" I found this method to work wonderfully around 90% of the time because it shows respect for the child and confidence in her ability to make decisions.
At first I wracked my brain about how to instill courage and willingness to accept challenges. My daughter's teacher related the connection between a child's performance and their confidence level. Children lacking self-confidence, who easily get nervous, also tend to not complete things to their best ability. As parents, it's our job to help our children build confidence in themselves by providing real opportunities. I allowed my daughter to do tasks around the house that I knew were within her ability but would also challenge her a little bit. I offered praise for completed tasks, for example, “You put the toys back on the shelf so neatly!" The purpose is for the child to experience the joy that goes with doing something successfully, and from this joy and affirmation in ones ability comes self-confidence.