12 Tips to Build Your Child’s Self Esteem
I attended a new parent seminar. The presenter was a child psychologist who also had an extensive experience working as a guidance counselor in the public school system. There, I learned that as a parent, raising your children with high self esteem should be one of the top priorities. A kid with a high self esteem is a resilient kid, able to weather the many curve balls life will throw at him or her. Below are twelve useful tips for building your child’s self esteem.
Compliment in a way that builds self esteem
- Clearly and explicitly explaining to your child what the child did right.
- Focus on positively reinforcing and complimenting the process, not the end result.
- Acknowledge the child’s feelings and compliment the motivations behind the child’s behavior.
Misguided ways to compliment that hurt self esteem
- Unilaterally doling out compliments by putting labels on the child (“You are a genius!”).
- Complimenting from the parents perspective and not the child’s (“See how well you did by listening to me!”).
- Complimenting through exaggerations and comparisons with others.
Discipline in a way that builds self esteem
- Disciplining with sympathy and understanding.
- Disciplining by teaching integrity, clearly explaining right and wrong.
- Having patience to let your child make the decisions.
Misguided ways to discipline that hurt self esteem
- Criticism and comparing with others.
- Disciplining through fear.
- Linking the past and present behavior together (“Why are you always whining whenever we eat?”).
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