Seven Simple Ways To Boost Your's Child's Self-esteem!

Seven Simple Ways To Boost Your's Child's Self-esteem!

Here's important information for your child's emotional health

We’re always banging on about how important our self-esteem is as adults to all aspects of our lives, e.g., our happiness, success and health. But it might not seem as obvious that there's a direct link between your child's emotional well-being - their self-esteem in particular - and their overall health. As more children are diagnosed with emotional and behavioural problems these have health consequences too.


If your child has strong self-esteem, though, this has positive benefits for their immune system. Think of their self-esteem like the roots of a tree - the stronger the roots the taller the tree will grow and flourish in every way.

Here are seven simple steps you can use to enhance your child's esteem:

1/ Their Personality!

Cherish who they really are as many parents felt to recognise the importance of this. Let them be their own unique little person rather than trying to shape them into something you want. Just because you'd love them to be the next British tennis champion (and we do need one!) they may not have any interest in tennis. You can damage their self-esteem by trying to force them down a route that's not their natural path.

2/ Consistent Love!

Never withhold your love as a punishment. It's tempting when angry with your child to withhold care, love and affection. And, yes, children need boundaries and appropriate discipline but it's completely inappropriate to tell them, e.g., "I won’t love you any more if you behave like that!" Never mix statements about your most powerful feelings towards them while scolding them when they've misbehaved. A parent’s love should never be in question despite being rightly frustrated or annoyed with a child's behaviour. Otherwise such inconsistency leads to low self-esteem.


3/ Their View!

Ask what they think or feel about something. It's easy to forget that your child has their own views on all sorts of subjects. You might even learn from them as some very wise words come out of the mouths of babes! You immediately make your child feel valued when you ask them what they thought about, e.g., a TV programme, a film, or even a news story depending on their age. Believing their opinion counts boosts their confidence.


4/ Positivity!

Use positive praise when they're behaving well. It's so easy to ignore a child that’s playing happily on their own while you get on with chores. Parents often only give children attention when they’re misbehaving. Reverse this by taking time to say, e.g., "Gosh, that drawing’s beautiful!" or, "Aren’t you playing nicely!" By rewarding good behaviour you encourage more of it. In turn this positive cycle makes them feel good about themselves.


5/ Avoid Envy!

Think about the role model you present when you complain about some other family, e.g., having better holidays, having a bigger home, or a better car. This only breeds envy in your child rather than being thankful for all you have within your family. Emphasising the good, non-materialistic things in your life, makes them feel secure at home with big benefits for their self-esteem.


6/ Boundaries!

Teach your child appropriate boundaries within your home and how they can apply these outside of the home. If you show your child that people can walk all over each other at home, and never show that you can assert yourself over how people treat you, than that’s what your child comes to expect. This means they’re liable to be, e.g., bullied at school and generally don't know how to assert themselves where necessary. Help them develop self-respect so when they walk out the door they can set boundaries with how others treat them outside the home. This is terribly important when something like bullying is a big problem with massive negative impact on a child’s self-esteem. Even where you least expect it a child can be bullied.


7/ Don't Dramatise!

Every child needs to learn to accept that bad, sad or difficult things occur in life. With every hurdle you face don't over-dramatise things. When a parent reacts with hysteria or inappropriate upset to a challenge it immediately teaches their child that life is a frightening, horrible, and impossible place. But keeping calm and looking for solutions to the problem, issue, or dilemma you’re facing will you teach your child the confidence to face whatever life throws them - even in the playground!


By taking these steps you can help ensure that your child's self-esteem grows. This means they’ll thrive in many ways becoming happier, confident, more contented people and healthier young people.


Published in The Express Newspaper


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