With back to school can also come anxiety. A childs self esteem can be wounded at any stage in their life. As a parent we want to help but don’t always know the right way to go about it. I’ve put together a few pieces of information to help you out along the way.
1. Present yourself in a confident manner. How you feel about yourself can translate to how a child feels about themselves.
2. Do not over flatter a child. You are trying to be encouraging but it can backfire. Children can see through excessive compliments and may end up dismissing what you say altogether.
3. Let your child know that you support and accept them in all areas even if their classmates do not.
4. Include children in activities that you are doing if they show an interest.
5. Encourage their own interests by helping them to explore them. Show them how to find out more or introduce them to a class that can teach them more. Don’t just praise them. Being supportive shows that you respect their individual interests.
6. Avoid sentences that begin with “You are” You are being shy, you are just being lazy etc. That relates to who they are as a person rather than an action they are taking that you don’t approve of.
7. Don’t compare them! This is really important. Everyone is different and it’s too hard to live up to what a brother, sister or friend can do.
8. Teach your children to think for themselves by making suggestions rather than telling them. It also saves a lot of unnecessary battles. For example, as “which of these two outfits would you like to wear today” or “I’ll put a sweater into your backpack so you know where it is if you get cold”.
9. Smile, hug and tell your children that you love them at odd times during the day. Don’t do this just at bedtime or when they’ve done something wonderful.
10. Remember this quote “We are each gifted in a unique and important way. It is our privilege and our adventure to discover our own special light.” ~Mary Dunbar