Self esteem is one of the most important aspects of our children’s development. Having a healthy and positive self esteem means our children feel good about themselves, have the courage to try new things, the confidence to do things independently, to stand up for what they believe in, to take pride in themselves, to set goals and to accept and give love. As discussed previously, we are generally pretty good at the positive reinforcement and praise elements of building a positive self esteem, and are doing this well, particularly in the early years of development (think how excited we get when they take their first steps…or the jubilation with which we respond to a first wee on the potty). But as our kids get older we need to ensure that this self esteem remains firmly in tact, and must therefore rely on many other forms of confidence building to ensure it is not just about their achievements and the subsequent praise, but rather a more well rounded approach that includes many other skills and coping strategies in order for our children to help face the many challenges that will lay ahead. For praise alone will not sustain their skills, belief, integrity, assertiveness, acceptance, responsibility and sense of purpose.
Below are some of the many ways we can encourage and develop our children’s positive self esteem that can certainly start from very early in life, but must be continued throughout the adolescent and teenage years. [Read more...]