Many parenting experts agree that the center, the essence if you will, of good parenting is building self-esteem. Clinical Psychologist Thomas D. Yarnell, says “In general, the more positive your self-esteem, the more successful you will be at dealing with life. The same holds for your children. The more positive their self-esteem, the more confident and proud they will be. They will try harder, be happier and have greater self-respect. They will make friends easier and will be more giving. Children with positive self-esteem are more secure and loving than children with negative self-esteem.”
According to the book Self-Esteem: ‘The Key to Your Child’s Well-Being’ at the center of any program to help build your child’s self esteem is these points:
- Build your child’s sense of child-parent bond. Physical touch and loving words from parents are the first step.
- Provide opportunities for him to feel that he is a functional and important member of his family, school class, group of friends, sports team, church, neighborhood, and community.
- Teach your child good social and conversational skills by modeling, direct teaching, and guided practice. These skills will enable him to have positive interactions with others.
- Tell him your family stories and talk about his ancestors, heritage, and nationality in a positive way.
- Build your child’s sense of uniqueness. Children need to feel that others think they have special qualities and talents. Find opportunities to point these out to him.
- Let your child express himself in his own way. Show respect for his thoughts and feelings so he will learn to do the same.
- Encourage your child’s curiosity, creativity, and imagination. Teach him to satisfy curiosity with learning and convey the joy of learning in everything you do.
- Build your child’s sense of power. Help him succeed by providing the support, teaching, and resources he needs to accomplish what he sets out to do.
- Give him responsibilities in the family and allow his input into decisions that affect him.
- Provide many opportunities for him to practice new skills he learns. Teach him to cope with failure by analyzing it, setting reasonable standards, and not overreacting.
- Teach him good problem-solving and decision-making skills. Teach him to prioritize, think about consequences, and plan a course of action.
- Build your child’s sense of models. Show by your own actions the appropriate way to behave.
- Teach your child right from wrong. Discuss your own values as you encounter dilemmas and decisions. Encourage him to apply those values to his own decision-making.
- Provide a broad range of experiences for your child so he will have more confidence in facing new experiences. At the same time maintain structure and order in your day-to-day life.