Having a positive self esteem or self worth is the best way that a child can successfully face the many challenges that are thrown their way during the course of their life. Children who have positive self esteem are able to tackle challenges very easily. They can handle negative pressures and conflicts with confidence and a smile on their face.
These children never get hassled by difficult situations which come their way. As they are able to confront the various problems with confidence, they are able to enjoy life in a better way. Their personal mantra for success in life is that they will meet all challenges head on and fight them successfully against all odds.
On the other hand children with low self worth or self esteem are often chewed up with worry and anxiety. They believe that they are incapable of facing challenges. These children are unable to come up with solutions to even the simplest of problems. Children with low self esteem are also extremely self critical. These children are in the habit of constantly putting themselves down with remarks like ‘This problem is beyond me’ or ‘I am not good at anything’.
What is Self Esteem?
Self esteem can simply be defined as the confidence or worth one has about himself or herself. The way each person values themselves determines whether they have positive or negative self esteem. However one needs to understand that people are not born with positive or negative self esteem. The environment plays an important role in determining a person self esteem. Children who are brought up in a positive environment have good self esteem while children who are born into families which chide them constantly begin to have a very low opinion about them selves.
Ways to Enhance Self Esteem in Children
There are different ways to boost self esteem in children. It is important that parents adopt different measures to boost their children’s self worth to help them become confident adults. Through this article, we will examine some of the unique ways that a child’s self esteem can be improved.
Spend Quality Time with Your Children
Most parents fail to realize that quality time spent with their children is far more valuable than the material gifts they shower their kids with. In today’s nuclear family set up where both parents work, children are often left alone for long periods of time. At the fag end of the day when the parents return home completely tired out, they are unable to spend any quality time with their children. It is extremely important to keep aside a certain period of time to positively interact with the child. Spending quality time with your child sans any kind of distractions like TV or mobile phone can go a long way in boosting your child’s self esteem.
Praise Your Child’s Achievements
All children crave their parent’s attention and affection. They also like to be praised for their achievements no matter how big or small it may be. Parents should not allow even the smallest accomplishment of their children to go unnoticed. Encourage your children to strive to cross bigger hurdles with the same self confidence that they showed in a particular situation. Enhance your child’s self esteem through the use of positive reinforcements like a hug or praise them by saying how clever or brave they are.
Accept Your Children As They Are
Success and failure are two sides of the same coin. While certain children excel in studies others may excel in sports. If your child is not very good in any particular sphere, let them know that you still love and appreciate them no matter what their shortcomings or faults may be. Encouraging a child through his failures and providing steadfast support is the hallmark of a good parent.
Encourage Your Child to Take Healthy Risks
One of the best ways to boost your child’ self worth is to encourage them to take healthy risks. Healthy risks are those which will boost a child’s morale. Support your child if he takes up a new activity or encourage your child to make new friends or try out things which are different from his regular routine. Ease your child into the new activity and provide support as and when required but refrain from acting like an over harried parent. As the child masters each new activity his or her self esteem also improves drastically.
Comparing your child with their peers or with their siblings is not a healthy trend. Some over ambitious parents in their desire to improve their child’s performance at different levels resort to comparing them negatively with their friends and siblings. Some parents may have the wrong idea that constant comparison will push their child to excel in all spheres of their life.
However what they fail to understand is than constant comparison will only cause a child’s self worth to hit rock bottom. Children who are brought up in an environment where there is constant comparison will exhibit extremely poor self esteem. These children often grow up to be very insecure adults who live in their parents shadows.
Support Your Child’s Decisions
As a parent it is up to you to support your child’s personal choices if they fall within acceptable parameters. With each new decision a child automatically gains self confidence which will go a long way in improving their overall confidence levels. If some of the decisions that a child has made turns out to be a mistake, support your child but never chide them or pass derogatory remarks.
Provide a Safe and Loving Home Environment
Children who grow up in loving homes are twice as likely to develop a strong sense of self esteem as children who grow up watching their parents constantly fight. Similarly children from stable two parent families exhibit greater confidence than those who are brought up in single parent homes.