Child self-esteem is formed in the first years of life. Of course, it is not static or permanent; it is modified according to the life experiences and the relationships we establish with our peers.
We can define Self-esteem as a set of emotions and internal thoughts that determine the image we have of ourselves. However, the way in which we judge ourselves.
The current society does not make it easy for the little ones. A multitude of advertising messages and television programs extol the values of the winner and the frustration of the losers. You have to always win and have anything material now.
There are almost no opportunities to learn that “defeats” and not having everything fast and effortlessly are part of life. Surely an essential part of each individual’s personal growth. All of this can affect self-esteem early.
It is evident that positive self-esteem constitutes a fundamental pillar for the development of a healthy personality. It is the basis, on which the personal balance and psychological health of each individual are built.
On the contrary, low self-esteem supposes a negative perception of oneself. It is the possibility of facing different situations and a negative vision of the near future. That is based on the little confidence that we have in ourselves.
Although a deficit of self-esteem is not considered clinically as a disorder. It is known for sure that it is one of the predisposing variables for the origin of many of the behavioral and/or emotional disorders.
School performance and the level of positive self-esteem usually correlate; on the contrary. Low self-esteem has been associated with the early onset of alcohol and drug use. As well as depression, anxiety, insecurity, dependency, isolation, and general apathy.
We are going to show how it can affect children and what are the factors, that we must take into account to build healthy self-esteem in them.
- 1 Child Low Self Esteem
- 2 Your Child’s Self Esteem
- 3 Child Self Esteem Test
- 4 Building Child’s Self Esteem
- 4.1 Reinforcement of Parents
- 4.2 Work Self-Reinforcement
- 4.3 Congratulations from Other Family Members
- 4.4 Avoid Overprotection to Build Child Self Esteem
- 4.5 Give Responsibilities to Build Child Self Esteem
- 4.6 Encourage Their Responsibility
- 4.7 Highlight Their Achievements and Their Effort
- 4.8 Love him Unconditionally
- 4.9 Give Him the Necessary Attention to Develop Child Self Esteem
- 4.10 Teach them to be Assertive to Make Better Child Self Esteem
- 5 Power of Home
- 6 Home Plays a Vital Role
Child Low Self Esteem
Etymologically, self-esteem refers to how much we love ourselves and must be differentiated from self-concept, which is the image we have of ourselves.
Self-esteem would be based on the positive that the person sees in themselves. The personal security that exists in which that task to be undertaken is going to be carried out successfully. Child self-esteem will influence how the child relates to the environment and other children.
Your Child’s Self Esteem
Up to about 4 years old (these limits differ among children) the child has not yet developed the inner language. So his representation of himself is based on the information of the environment. Also mainly in the messages, he receives from his parents and with these, he ‘builds up’ his self-esteem.
For this reason, it is very important to control what we say and not to put labels such as “bad”, “vogue”. It is better to talk about specific actions that are not right and not attribute these global adjectives to the child.
After 6 years of age, the child is already generating an image of himself and although the internal language already exists, not everything is lost. Much can always be done to improve. Because the outside still influences and the child remains receptive to the messages he receives from parents.
Child Self Esteem Test
When a child repeats too many phrases like ‘I cannot’ or ‘I do not know’ and continually seeks the help of their parents.
You have to start thinking that their self-esteem may be fragile. But you have to distinguish between asking for help so you do not have to perform a task that indicates insecurity.
A child with low self-esteem often retreats and makes excuses for not performing his homework and assignments. Because underlying the belief that he will not be able to perform them successfully.
It is important to let it solve situations on its own and to realize that it is capable of achieving it. But these challenges must be appropriate for its age.
At first, let us ask for things that we know we can take on successfully. When they get frustrated by undertaking challenges that require being older also let them know.
Building Child’s Self Esteem
Here we point out 10 ideas that can help parents strengthen their children’s self-esteem:
Reinforcement of Parents
We must recognize the virtues of each child and make them know at the time with praise, by either finishing the homework early, helping a brother or a friend in an activity or being affectionate. Behavior and self-esteem are reinforced.
Verbal messages are key to the construction of child self-esteem; labels reinforce unwanted behavior and limit the development of their personality.
Ask the child to reflect on what he has done well in a task, activity or what his skills are and to express it verbally.
We help the child to identify their strengths. This reinforcement of child self-esteem no longer has to come from another person but part of the child himself.
Writing these strengths and what the child does well contributes to the fact that it is the child, who attributes value to what he or she does.
Congratulations from Other Family Members
You can count on the help of a family member with whom the child has more attachment. For example, through a telephone call; talk with the child to congratulate him on some achievement.
It is also good to discuss with the relatives with the child present those good actions or achievements of the child.
Avoid Overprotection to Build Child Self Esteem
If we solve tasks that the child is already capable of performing on his own, he receives the message that he is not capable of doing them on his own.
‘You cannot alone’ or ‘you are not worth’ could be subliminal messages that the child assumes this overprotection.
This prevents him from developing throughout the growth of the strategies and resources he needs to relate to others and the world around him.
We must also let him undertake those challenges for which he is already prepared and can successfully achieve.
Give Responsibilities to Build Child Self Esteem
Allowing the child to participate in some household chores and decisions and letting them make small personal decisions is a way to encourage them to be more independent and self-sufficient.
In this way, they will feel that their participation is important and necessary and, therefore, their self-confidence and personal security will be strengthened.
You do not need big actions, you can ask him to help you set the table, take out the trash, dry the dishes or feed the pet.
Encourage Their Responsibility
Let them make decisions regarding daily habits. For example, they can help you prepare food or cook their own healthy plate, help you dry the dishes, set the table, pick up the dishes, tie your shoes, ride my bike, prepare the dessert, etc.
It is important that we let them face these tasks. Always bearing in mind that they must be adequate to their abilities and that we must mark the limits of their choice possibilities.
For example, you indicate that they can help or prepare food or prepare the table, one of the two things. With these small responsibilities is more than enough for the child to strengthen their self-esteem.
Highlight Their Achievements and Their Effort
Celebrating the child’s achievements and highlighting their qualities is a good way to boost their self-esteem. However, it is also important to highlight his effort, beyond the result obtained.
In this way, the child will understand that not only the results are important but also the commitment and commitment that he has put into the task.
It is about adopting a different perspective, more focused on their qualities as a person, avoid focusing solely on the result. With this approach, you will learn to better handle failures and mistakes.
Love him Unconditionally
For a child, it is just as important to know how to be protected by their parents, as to feel loved. Most of the time a hug or a kiss is enough to show affection, but neither should you forget the facts and the words.
What good is it if you kiss your son every day if, when he makes a mistake, you reprimand him unjustly? For the child to feel loved there must be no dissonance between what you say and do. If you love him, love him unconditionally.
Give Him the Necessary Attention to Develop Child Self Esteem
Dedicating time to your child is not just an act of love it is an obligation. The attention of the parents conveys a very clear message to the children: “You are important to me, I love you”.
When you spend quality time with your child and listen to him, you learn to know him and connect emotionally; creating an effective bond that will hardly break in the future.
Do not think that because your child is small, has no opinions and likes! it is important that you always pay attention to what you have to say.
Teach them to be Assertive to Make Better Child Self Esteem
Correct their mistakes with affection, patience and without shouting. Make them understand that you learn together and the exchange is mutual.
It may be that something they do not like and that they express it in a calm and emotionally balanced way. However, the experiences lived and learned with the parents is important to achieve it.
Power of Home
I reiterate the importance of the home and family so that the child can develop a good self-esteem. Not being the object of violence or observing it is fundamental but more than that. It is important that your home must be a safe place full of love and respect.
For that reason, we must address two issues. The first, indispensable, that of learning to master our anger and negative comments. Not using blackmail, not hitting or shouting, and, in general, being available and attentive to the emotional needs of children. It will make them grow up knowing that they are valued. In addition, it feels them there is a place in the world where they will always be welcomed with love.
Learning to treat children with the same respect we expect from any human being is a good way to start.
Our responsibility as parents is to learn to be better parents. It is not enough to repeat the patterns taught to us. We must have the courage and make the effort to deepen our understanding of the child and its natural evolution. If necessary (and we all lack it), we need to develop tools to control our bad habits
It is not that to be a father you have to study a career, but if you take the trouble to try to raise our children as well as possible.
Home Plays a Vital Role
We will make mistakes because we all make mistakes. At least not being carried away by the current or the custom is the minimum that the children deserve and a sample.
In addition, of respect, we have towards our parents, who will surely be proud that let us try to improve. Although some of them find it difficult to admit it or feel threatened if we do not do things as they did.
The second issue that concerns the home environment is the way in which we relate to adults. Even when there is a serious separation or difference of opinion, it would be very important to speak and treat us with respect. Not to insult us or allow the child to witness conversations that he cannot understand.
Neither shouting, nor disrespect, nor harmful irony behaviors that benefit children at all. In fact, if this occurs in coexistence, it should be the parent’s responsibility to avoid it and develop respectful ways of dealing with their conflicts.
If we already talk about serious situations, it is essential to ask for help. A child who witnesses violence in his home is also a victim of violence.