Building Self Esteem in your Child

Self-esteem refers to what we feel and think about ourselves. Self-esteem has an effect of everything we do in our lives. Healthy self-esteem encourages a positive “Yes I Can” attitude, as opposed to the “No I Can’t” attitude. This is one of the most important concepts of a young child. Children start life with being helpless and dependent on their carers. They can’t stay this way if you want them to grow up happy and be productive. They need to learn that they have some control over their environment, and as they grow up, they have more and more control over their own lives. They must learn to believe in themselves because unfortunately, too many children worry about failure. They second guess their strengths, feel insecure, unfocused, are overly critical of themselves, and often don’t believe that they can achieve the best in life if they set themselves to the task. Poor self-esteem ends up negatively affecting what they do, say or think. However, children that feel good about themselves will produce positive results. Helping your child grow up with a strong character and high self-esteem is one of the most important tasks of parenthood. A child with high self-esteem is most likely in becoming a successful and happy adult. Luckily, self-esteem can be positively influenced with the guidance and encouragement of their parents.

Respected Role Models

There are many things parents can do to raise a sense of self-esteem within their child. Firstly, parents themselves need to feel good about themselves, as children pick up messages about their own self-worth from your body language and the way you talk about yourself. If you are openly self-critical in front of your child, they will learn to be self-critical too. Because parents hold a strong importance in a child’s life, children learn from their parents. By displaying your own self-worth, your child will respect you and learn to respect himself.

Giving the Child Attention

Listening to your child is an important way to show them their own value. By listening to someone and giving them your full attention, you are telling them that you value them, what they have to say, and they are important to you. Your child will learn to listen too if in turn, you allow them to express themselves, and allow them to finish before you offer your point of view.

Discipline

Discipline also contributes to a child’s self-esteem. Discipline is referred to as any instruction or training that moulds a person’s mental faculties and moral character. Children raised without discipline have lower self- esteem and tend to be more dependent and achieve less. Discipline begins with a good relationship between the parent and child, where the child knows what is expected, and knows the consequences of bad behaviour are reasonable and predictable. Children need and want to know what is expected. They thrive on the image of themselves achieving that expectation. They wait for the approval they will receive. This expectation and approval motivates children to learn to read or to learn their multiplication tables.

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