5 ways to help your child's self-esteem

I love myself, I don't love myself, I love myself, I don't love myself

Do you love yourself? Hope the answer to this question is a big YES. Why ? Because your child's self-esteem starts with yours. Picture this: you look at yourself in the mirror and say out loud, "Oh my, I look terrible today! I can't believe these pants make me look so fat." Now imagine that your child is looking at you and listening to you. What do you think he gets out of it? Yes, that's it, he's learning that it's okay to speak negatively about yourself.

Children learn by observing our actions and behaviors. This is done through what we call mirror neurons. These neurons allow us to learn by imitation. They allow us to reflect facial expressions, emotions, body language and behaviors. Mirror neurons show how what you see might relate to what you do. [1]

It is important to note that good self-esteem contributes to the development of your own emotional intelligence (EI). Remember, cultivate your own self-esteem and EI first so that you can better cultivate them for your child.

What exactly is self-esteem?

Before we dive into how you can improve your child's self-esteem, let's define what it is: self-esteem is used to describe a person's overall subjective feeling about their worth. personal. Basically, it is defined as the extent to which you love, respect and appreciate yourself, regardless of the circumstances. [2]

Self-esteem tends to be low during childhood, then increases during adolescence and continues to rise in adulthood. It ends up reaching a fairly stable level. As a result, it makes self-esteem or self-love similar to the strength of personality traits over time.

Children who have low self-esteem often believe that they cannot achieve their goals, express their emotions and needs, and are often reluctant to try new things. It also affects their self-confidence, as they feel like they don't have the skills to take on challenges or complete the tasks assigned to them.

Low self-esteem can impact children's mental and emotional health and lead them to suffer from anxiety and depression. Being aware of this and finding ways to help your child love themselves is essential.

Here are 5 ways to improve your child's self-esteem:

Strengthen their self-awareness

As your child develops its self-awareness, he or she is working on one of the essential components of emotional intelligence. Self-awareness will help your child identify the emotion felt and express its needs. When a child expresses an emotion or a need with a parent who listens with empathy and kindness, the child will feel that his/her feelings and existence are important. When we feel important, we feel loved. When we feel loved, we feel joy. All great ingredients that contribute to a good self-esteem.

Express them gratitude

Just looking your child in the eye and saying an honest "thank you" shows your child that you appreciate him/her and that they have something to contribute to life by just being himself. We can thank them for their kindness, their spontaneity, their individuality.

Teach them that there is no superiority - everyone is equal.

As parents, we sometimes label our children as a certain "someone". For example, she is the "smart" child or he is the "nice" kid. Unfortunately, even though we do this without intending to affect their self-esteem, it does affect them anyway. For example, if we designate our child as "the smart one," we risk not allowing the other child to develop certain skills or qualities.

Also, we cannot compare our children with each other or with their friends. Every human being is unique, and we must praise their uniqueness. When we compare our children, we risk arousing jealousy, envy and resentment, which are not emotions and feelings that we want to encourage in our children.

Use positive words - our words are their thoughts

Imagine an adult who constantly repeats the following sentence to a child: "You are a bad child ... You are a bad child ... You are a bad child". What do you think the child will think? Yes, he will think strongly that he is bad, because our words become their thoughts.

A new study has suggested that the average person has around 6,200 thoughts per day. [3]  However, remember that just having a thought does not make it true. If negative words negatively impact your children's self-esteem, imagine what positive words filled with love, compassion and respect can do!

Celebrate progress - not just accomplishments

Of course, it is natural to celebrate our child when he accomplishes something. We are proud of them, and that's to be expected. However, it is just as important to congratulate them on the steps they take in order to accomplish something. Praise them for the progress they are making when working on a particular goal or task. Not only will this be good for their self-esteem, but they will also gain confidence in the task at hand (since self-confidence is correlated with competence).


Cultivating your children's self-esteem is crucial as it will help them gain better emotional and mental health, maintain healthy relationships, develop their curiosity of mind, and become more courageous and persevering.

Let's work together to help our children practice self-love more, one child at a time.

#TheArtOfEmotions with SOSOMIMI

[1] Psychologicalscience.org

[2] Verywellmind.com

[3] Journal Nature Communications, Queen’s University, Kingston, Canada

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