Self esteem could be described as having confidence in oneself. It’s having confidence in one’s abilities and having respect for who one is inside and out. Yet, there are so many factors that can contribute to a child’s self esteem, and the way that parents respond to their children can play a large role in lifting a child’s sense of self.
The following tips are ways that parent’s can help improve the self esteem and self confidence of their children.
Look for the good in your child. Instead of seeing the A he should have gotten, praise him on the B that he did get. Instead of seeing the marks that your daughter got on her term paper, praise her for researching and completing the paper in the first place. The emphasis on what he or she is doing well can help those positive behaviors grow. Although it might be apparent that praising your child can significantly support his or her positive sense of self, it’s easy to get caught up in the tasks of the day, chores and responsibilities, and the to-do list. For some parents, it’s easy to forget that relationships come first, and with that, seeing what your child did right instead of what he or she didn’t do can have significant impact on how she feels about her life. Continue reading
The digital age seems to be taking over the mind. We don’t have to remember phone numbers anymore or keep time or remember anniversaries. Our digital phones, computers, and Ipads are doing it for us. And it might make you wonder how the digital experience is affecting children today. In psychology and science, researchers are curious about that too.
An article in the New York Times points out that texting, which can be incredibly distracting, can take a toll on a teen’s mental health. From a study done by Pew Research Center, children are texting over 50 texts per day, and one third of children are texting 100 or more per day. One in seven children send more than 200 texts. It’s easier, they say, to text than to make a phone call.
The pattern of over-texting, however, has been a recent concern for doctors and psychologists. Sherry Turkle, a psychologist and director at Initiative on Technology believes that the excessive texting may cause a shift in the way teens develop. There’s a constant disruption in a teen’s attention from the task at hand, whatever that might be, to a text, back to his or her current activity, and back to the phone again. There’s very little ability to stay focused. Continue reading
We all need to manage the stress of life. We need coping mechanisms so that the responsibilities of life don’t become overwhelming or unmanageable.
To cope means the ability to deal effectively with something difficult. For instance, you might feel stuck in situations that are not under your control. You’re required to do things you don’t want to do or attend events that you don’t want to participate in. As an adult, you likely have stress relieving techniques to help you manage life stress. And it’s important to share those techniques to your children.
The following are suggestions for relaxation techniques and coping mechanisms that you might want to use yourself and that you can share with children and teenagers. For instance, you might need to take breaks throughout the day to be with yourself. As you’ll read about below, you might need to take a break from technology or listen to relaxing music. And when stress is high, you might need to know of a helpful coping mechanism to use right in the middle of a stressful moment, such as deep breathing. Three ways to cope with stress are: Continue reading
Often, both children and adults hold on to early debilitating beliefs without ever really knowing it. For instance, there might have been an early experience that led to damaging thoughts. Or in many cases, the self-esteem of a parent can have an influence on the self esteem of their children.
If children suffer from a low self esteem, the effects of the associated dysfunctional thought patterns can be seen in almost every aspect of life – poor grades, little money, few relationships, or jobs that don’t reflect the value of their skills. However, with children, there is a greater opportunity to curtail that downward spiraling thinking into thoughts and beliefs that are more loving, self-affirming, and accepting.
As a caregiver or parent, you have the opportunity to do this with your child. Of course, one obvious way to do this is to look for the good in your child. Instead of seeing the “A” he should have gotten, praise him on the “B” that he did get. Instead of seeing the marks that your daughter got on her science project, praise her for researching and completing the project in the first place. The emphasis on what he or she is doing well can help those positive behaviors grow. Although it might be apparent that praising your child can significantly support his or her positive sense of self, it’s easy to get caught up in the tasks of the day, chores and responsibilities, and the to-do list. For some parents, it’s easy to forget that relationships come first, and with that, seeing what your child did right instead of what he or she didn’t do can have significant impact on how she feels about her life. Continue reading
As parents we are more than just a guide for our children, we can model what it’s like to have to manage the stresses of life while staying calm and relaxed. For instance, even though you know the bills need to get paid, even though you might have a temporary conflict with your spouse, even though the house needs to get clean, as a parent, you have the ability to tend to your children’s needs in the moment, while putting everything else aside.
It’s the ability to put things to rest temporarily. It’s the ability to be fully present with your child while keeping all the other responsibilities of life at bay. And one way to do this is to practice a form of relaxation. Although this might not suit everyone, there’s no question that relaxation plays an essential role in the mental, physical, and emotional health of individuals, whether they are parents or not. Continue reading