Parents know that good self-esteem and confidence is the cornerstone of success – but how do we go about building this is kids? As a former school counselor, a great deal of what I did focused around self-esteem and building confidence in students. I spent a lot of time talking with parents about the ways that they could help build self-esteem & confidence at home AND a lot of time talking with students about how they felt.
Here’s 5 simple things that you can do, at any age level, to help build confidence & self-esteem in your child:
1. Have realistic expectations and goals
As parents, we want to expect the best from our children. Always promote success, but keep your child’s interests, strengths and weaknesses in mind. Set attainable goals or promote reaching a goal in steps if necessary. Most importantly, celebrate when goals are met.
2. Praise the positive and point out strengths.
Reinforce and point out what your child does well. In turn, they’ll feel special and will become aware at what they are good at. Phrase constructive criticism with a positive spin and let your child know you are there to help them overcome obtacles. Example: Instead of: “You need to study harder” say, “Let’s come up with some ways to help you study.”
3. Encourage interests & talents
Find out what your child likes to do and what they have interest in – whether it be a hobby, sport or other interest. Help your child engage in that activity so that they feel good about themselves and see your confidence in them. Example: If you know your child likes writing, encourage them to share stories or pieces of work with you or to enter that poetry or writing contest.
4. Treat children as individuals – especially with siblings
All children are different, even siblings. Treat each as their own person and never compare. Accept each child’s strengths and weaknesses and teach siblings to support each other.
5. Help your child develop problem-solving & critical thinking skills
Having good problem solving and coping skills will help your child have better self-esteem and confidence. You can build this by guidling them to come up with multiple solutions to a problem and then modeling how to choose the best solution. Let them learn how to solve problems independently as early as possible.
As a member of Clever Girls Collective, I was selected to participate in the Healthy Habits program sponsored by Kimberly-Clark and Colgate-Palmolive. The content and opinions expressed here are all my own. #healthyhabits #cgc