A third of young people lack confidence, according to a Sky survey – with some blaming social media.
The Sky Academy report which surveyed 1,600 young people comes amid a campaign to boost confidence in young people, supported by YouTube sensation Alfie Deyes.
The survey asked young people about the pressures that undermine confidence and how that can affect success in life.
Of those interviewed, only 60% of girls said they felt confident, compared to 67% of boys.
Others described the potential for having confidence sapped by social media interactions.
Despite out-performing boys by 8.4% in the 2015 GCSE results (grades A*-C) girls’ confidence levels (67%) were still lower than their male counterparts (60%).
Some two-thirds (66%) of girls’ confidence is influenced by how attractive or unattractive they feel, compared to just 46% of boys.
One girl said: “We can communicate further than we did before … but then there’s disadvantages as well; we do have cyber bullying … they see a photo of someone and call them ugly.”
According to the survey, girls’ sense of confidence is more tied, than boys, to whether they feel they are physically attractive.
Throughout the teenage years, parents remain a critical source of support.
However, the findings suggest there is a considerable disconnect as parents have an inflated sense of their child’s confidence.
The report also revealed that parents, and young people aged 11-24, believe confidence is an important factor to achieving life success.
Deyes, who has 4.5 million followers on YouTube, running channels including PointlessBlog, is supporting a campaign to boost confidence among children.
Despite his huge following and apparent confidence in front of the camera he said: “I still get shy about things.”
Sky Academy ambassador Jessica Ennis-Hill said: “Nothing is more powerful than confidence.
“In my career it was my parents who first gave me the encouragement and confidence to overcome boundaries and achieve my goals.
“It was then about hard work and determination to build the skills I needed to succeed.
“I’m thrilled to be involved in the Sky Academy Confidence Month and I hope to inspire and encourage a newfound confidence amongst young people.”
Sky Academy was launched in 2013 by David Beckham, to use the power of TV, creativity and sport to help young people unlock their potential.
There are five initiatives and each one helps build key skills, experience and self-belief.
Since launching, Sky Academy has helped over 250,000 young people across the country, with a goal of helping one million by 2020.