Self-esteem is how an individual perceives their self-worth in relation to others and the world around them. It’s important for children to have a healthy self-esteem, as it is the primary ingredient for ensuring their success in all aspects of life. Children need a positive self-esteem, as it prepares them to face the challenges of life. Children with a high self-esteem have shown to perform better in their academics, social relations and extra-curricular activities. A healthy self-esteem allows kids to feel good about who they are and to have a firm belief in their skills, actions and behavior. It gives them the confidence to tackle everyday challenges and makes them more willing to take up initiatives. Children with high self-esteem will be able to deal with their mistakes and would keep trying until they have achieved their goal. A positive self-esteem would stay with the child all throughout their life and continue to aid their personal and professional success as an adult.
With so many benefits, you would certainly want your child to have a healthy self-esteem. Here are some of the effective ways to boost your child’s self-esteem.
Encourage your child to develop a winning skill:
Your child needs to have at least one skill that they can excel at and do it better than others. It would boost their sense of self-worth and encourage them to acquire more skills. The skill could be anything like proficiency in a particular subject, being good at a particular sport, acquiring mastery over social skills, leading the way in extra-curricular activities, etc. Any skill that requires time and effort to acquire will definitely boost your child’s confidence and self-esteem.
Allow them to focus on their strengths:
You may have certain aspirations for your child. For example, you may want them to follow a specific career such as that of a lawyer, a doctor, etc. However, it would be in the best interest of the child if you let them focus on their strengths. For example, your child may have interest in physics or they may have an inclination towards music. Allowing your child to pursue the thing they like will boost their self-esteem and increase the possibility of success in their chosen field.
Engage your child in various activities:
Every weekend, you can engage your kid in activities such as games and sports, cycling, mountaineering, etc. You can ask your kid what they are interested in and then you can engage them in that particular activity. Such activities will give your child a sense of achievement, which will help boost their self-esteem. Moreover, anything that challenges the intellect and the human body is bound to be beneficial for your child.
Be a friend and a good listener:
You should develop a relationship with your child in a way that they treat you as a friend and do not hesitate to share their thoughts, ideas, and opinions with you. It is possible that your kid may develop certain negative perceptions about the way they look or their abilities, actions or behavior. Such negativities can dent their self-esteem. However, if you can listen to their fears, you can provide them the right guidance and help them overcome their negativities.
Tell them no one is perfect:
In their journey to learn new things and acquire new skills, your kid is likely to make mistakes and experience failures. At these moments, you need to be there to support them and to tell them that it’s okay. You need to inform them that no one is perfect and even the best of the best have experienced mistakes and failures. Your words of wisdom will motivate your kid and encourage them to try again.
Answer their queries:
Your child may have various questions in their mind, as they are beginning to understand the world around them. If the questions remain unanswered, it would probably lead to negativities. Such negativities would eventually impact their psyche and their self-esteem. You need to encourage your child to ask questions, so that you can clear all their doubts and confusions. When you are available, it would prevent your child from accessing unreliable sources of information.
Allow your child to take decisions:
Parents take various decisions for their child on an everyday basis. You can pass some of that responsibility to your child, so that they can develop a sense of being in control. For example, you can ask your child to decide for themselves how much screen time they need every day. Or, you could ask them which house chores they are willing to take up. Being able to take decisions, coupled with a sense of responsibility, will boost your child’s self-esteem.
Lead by example:
Since children get their behavioral cues from parents, and so you need to come across as an individual with a healthy self-esteem. Make sure you don’t appear as depressed, grumpy or gloomy in front of your child. You may have had a tough day or may be dealing with a bad news, but your negative emotions should not be expressed in front of your child. Always appear confident and excited to deal with problems and challenges.
Offer genuine appreciation:
Whenever you feel that your kid has made significant progress or has achieved something, you need to appreciate their efforts. Genuine appreciation has shown to boost confidence and self-esteem. However, avoid over-appreciating your kid, as it could inflate their self-esteem. Such inflated self-esteem is bound to fail in challenging situations.
Love your child:
Irrespective of how the world perceives your child or what your child may or may not have achieved, you should always love your child unconditionally. The love that parents give to their child is the biggest contributor to the child’s self-esteem. Your love will be the foundation for all the other factors that will boost your child’s self-esteem.
It’s important to understand that a healthy self-esteem may take some time to materialize. However, once it takes the desired shape, it will become self-sustaining, would continue to grow and shall last a lifetime. As a parent, you need to be patient and consistent in your approach when trying to boost your child’s self-esteem.