Building a Child's Healthy Self Esteem Building a Child's Healthy Self Esteem:Target Niche

Building a Child's Healthy Self Esteem

A child responds positively to praise and positive attitudes when they are frequently given genuine positive feedback. Praise is not something that can be given once in a while, it has to be consistent. Their behavior at home and in the classroom improves when they feel good about themselves. They achieve more and are motivated to be a success. They develop and go through life with a "can do" attitude not an "I can't" attitude. It is the significant adult in a child's life that can make or break how that child sees themselves. Children are like sponges and they will absorb everything you say or do.

It is important that we, as the adults in a child's life, know that the praise we give has a better effect if we are specific. Saying "I'm proud of you" is great. It is even better if we say what behavior has us feel proud of them. An example might be: "Look, you cleaned your room so well by putting all those cars back in their special place and they are lined up perfectly. I am so proud of you." Can you see that the next time the child does the task they know what it was they did that was acceptable? They want to repeat it and even do better. They feel confident and a confidant child has a healthy self esteem. They become self motivated and, when they go to school, they have higher academic achievements.

We, as the child's most important influence, can support their healthy and high self esteem by using the following suggestions.

Focus on all the positive they are doing. Put your attention on what they did that was correct, good, kind, compassionate. Even if they didn't do a task perfectly, praise them on what was done well. An example might be if the child helped you fold towels and the towels weren't done as perfect as you would do. Tell them, "I am so grateful you helped me fold all these towels. I like how you have stacked them!"

Help them to feel valued. A child builds a high self esteem when they feel valued and appreciated. Thank them for their participation or helping in some way. Notice when they have done something, even something small, to be helpful, such as, putting their dish in the sink, hanging their jacket up, putting their book back after looking at it.

Be conscious of criticism and avoid it to the best of your ability. When you find you have criticized, apologize. When we apologize we teach our children that it is OK to notice our mistakes and to take responsibility for them. A child looks at you like you know everything and will mimic what you do. If you are critical a child becomes critical and usually of themselves.
Help build a positive body self image by complementing them. Tell them what beautiful eyes they have, how strong their body is, how darling their hands are or how beautiful they look to you. When they accomplish a physical task, like learning to skip, let them know how wonderful it is to have a body that can do that.

Remember, a child's eyes are always upon you. How you treat them lets the child know if they are loved, valued, respected, appreciated or accepted. That old saying of "sticks and stones may break your bones but words will never hurt you" is a lie. Your words can stifle the life out of a child. They believe what you say. Tell them they are brilliant and will be a great success in life.
Be realistic about what they can or can't do at their particular stage in their life. We want to set our children up for success and we do that by giving them task that we know they can complete. Asking a four year old to do the laundry is unrealistic, but asking them to help separate the light clothes from dark clothes is something they could do by making it a game.

Our goal is to assist our children to be a healthy, happy, and productive adults. We want them to live the life they were meant to live. Healthy self esteem, developed in childhood, will be carried with them throughout their lives and will help them cope effectively with all the challenges adults have to face. Make it your priority to encourage and support the children in your life.

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