What is the key to having a successful and happy life? It is during our child’s early years that the foundation of a positive self-esteem is laid. Besides helping them to cope with challenges positively, having a high self-esteem also helps them deal with failure constructively. But just how do we boost our child’s self-esteem?
1\ Find Strengths
Encourage your children to try their hand at different activities to find their strengths. Just as how we may have needed a few tries to find our forte, our children should be given the same opportunity. Explain to them that different people excel at different things and that they should be proud of what they have achieved.
2\ Praise Generously – For The Right Reasons
While grades are important, try as much not to focus on that aspect or compare their progress with their peers. Instead, ask about what they’ve learnt during the journey and praise them for their efforts so that they will be motivated to work harder next time. That said however, you should also always praise your child whenever they perform a job well done, which in turn helps to increase their motivation and build self-esteem.
3\ Clarify What Defines Failure
Everyone defines failure differently, but a child defines failure based on what their parents tell them. So how do you help your child see that victory or defeat is not the ultimate measure of success? By focusing on the process rather than the outcome, of course! Constantly reinforcing that the journey matters more than the destination will allow your children to worry less about failure, resulting in a better recovery and learning experience.
4\ Bonding Time
Put aside some time for your child and make them feel that they are important to you. Do so by giving your child your full attention when playing with or listening to them speak. Additionally, give your child opportunities to socialise with their peers. Allowing them to establish new relationships and friendships will result in a higher confidence level.
5\ Encourage Independence
As your child gets older, build up their confidence and help to encourage their independence by giving them age-appropriate tasks that they can manage on their own. While you should be somewhere nearby so that you can lend them a helping hand should they face any problems, try as much to let them complete a task on their own.
6\ Avoid Labels
Just like how we get affected by negative words when they’re used to describe us, our kids feel the same way when they’re being called “lazy” or “naughty”. Instead, whenever you find your child misbehaving, discipline your child by letting them know that you do not like their actions. Helping them realise that the problem is with their behaviour and not with themselves will minimise the impact on their self-esteem.