Home Personal Development How To improve Your Child's Self-Esteem

How To improve Your Child’s Self-Esteem

Connie Henriquez H.H.C. is a Teen Life Coach who teaches kids & teens how to overcome anxiety, self-doubt and improve  their self-esteem. For more information, call (516) 340-0378 or check out her website at startlovinglife.com. 

The only problem with the children I work with is that they are defeating themselves in their own mind. That’s it. By doing this, they are slowly, over time, killing their self-esteem which negatively affects their self-image and impacts EVERY aspect of their life.

When children lack self-esteem they experience:

    •    Shyness
    •    Sadness
    •    Stress
    •    Anxiety 
    •    Mood Swings
    •    Anger Outbursts

Does this sound like your child?

All of the above are fixable when you address the root issue: your child’s self-esteem.

Why your child lacks self-esteem? 
There can be many reasons, but below is a common example of my experiences with the many kids I work with. 

Scenario: 1
Growing up, children are NOT taught to LOVE themselves or LOVE life. Instead, at an early age, your child’s “intelligence” is measured by performance in every subject at school. Therefore, if they did not excel academically, your child at age 6 (or whatever age) was automatically deemed “NOT smart”. 

Scenario: 2
Conversely, if your child was lucky enough to excel in EVERY subject, then your child learned validation by manufactured benchmarks, such as grades. This created the pressure to perform in order to continue their validation of worthiness, all of which is exhausting, stressful and causes that dreadful “perfectionism” bug.

So, regardless of whether your child fell into either scenario 1 or 2, that experience has shaped their self-image. 

Now, should it have? No, of course not. Instead, we must teach our children that their worthiness comes from the inside and has NOTHING to do with outside accolades or other’s opinions of them (that includes grades and everything else). 
    But unfortunately, the current reality tends to create a platform for your child at an early age, forcing them to become very self-critical.

For example, self-critical thoughts based on the above scenarios include:

(Scenario 1) Does not excel academically:

    •    I am not good enough.
    •    I am not smart enough.
    •    There is something wrong with me.
    •    I don’t fit in.
    •    My parents are disappointed in me.

(Scenario 2) Does excel academically:

    •    In order to be good, I MUST do well.
    •    If I get a bad grade, I am disappointed in myself.
    •    I must be the best in order to make my parents happy.
    •    I receive positive attention from my parents only when I do         well, so in order to feel loved, I must continue to do well.

The list goes on…

Since I’ve worked with children, I see these scenarios all the time. Your children put undue pressure on themselves to perform, fit in and make you, the parent, happy. Let’s face it,  there is no wonder why kids’ anxiety and depression are at an all-time high. And, just remember, the above scenario is pertaining to schoolwork and grades! There’s also the social aspect that involves making friends, succeeding in sports, the pressures of social media…and much more!

So, what’s the solution?

It’s simple. Kids must learn how to love themselves AND how to start loving life, regardless of EVERYTHING ELSE. They must know that the only opinion of them that matters, is their own. So, when they improve their opinions of themselves (their self-image), by focusing on their positive, unique qualities, they WILL feel better. 

When your child starts loving life, life will love them back…
Imagine that?

 

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