Good self-esteem helps children try new things, take healthy risks and solve problems. It gives them a solid foundation for their learning and development. Parents can promote healthy self-esteem by showing encouragement.
Use the following strategies to help your child feel good about themselves:
1. Be spontaneous and affectionate. Your love will help boost your child’s self-esteem. Every child should believe that no matter what they do—success or failure— their parents still love them and will continue to be there for them.
2. Help your child to set achievable goals. Work with your child to establish these goals. Begin with goals that are very easy to accomplish. Give your child a taste of success and the confidence boost that goes along with it.
3. Encourage persistence. One way you can help your child is to set a good example. Demonstrate what it means to persevere.
4. Give your child choices. This can be as simple as giving them two options for lunch or allowing them to choose which shoes, they wear that day.
5. Discourage perfection. Your child’s self-esteem will suffer when they realize that they can never be perfect. Show your child that you value effort and progress.
6. Avoid over-praising. Praise your child for making a good effort. It should be noted that excessive praise has been shown to hurt a child’s confidence rather than boost it.
7. Allow your child to overhear you complimenting them. A child gets a big boost to their self-esteem when they hear a parent praising them to another adult. Your children are always watching you.
8. Take good care of yourself. Taking good care of yourself shows your child that you’re important. They will believe that they’re important and should take care of themselves as well.
9. Be a positive role model. If you’re excessively harsh on yourself, pessimistic, or unrealistic about your abilities and limitations, your kids might eventually mirror you. Nurture your own self-esteem and they’ll have a great role model.
There’s no doubt that a child with high self-esteem is happier and more confident. Teach your children to love and believe in themselves, and they’ll reap the benefits throughout their entire lives.
Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.
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