How to help children cultivate self-esteem

How to help children cultivate self-esteem

In order for a child to gain confidence in his / her possibilities, it is essential that mom and dad first become aware of the fact that the child is not an extension of them

Self-esteem is the awareness that a child has (or does not have) his own worth in the eyes of the world around him (parents, relatives, teachers …). It is built, step by step, from the first days of the baby's life and has to do, in large part, with the relationship that the parents manage to establish with him, with their ability to infuse him, still a newborn, with safety and trust in himself and in others. It is therefore not a genetic component that children receive by inheritance. Instead, it depends on the experience of mom and dad, on their past, which could make them, without their awareness, anxious, irritable, overprotective … and which could influence, always unconsciously, the way they take care of the little one, where to take care we mean the gestures (change his diaper, breastfeed him, wash him, cuddle him …) which are part of a baby's daily life.

Self-esteem, in fact, has its battlefield in comparison with others and the outside is the mirror for the child to reflect on. The social component plays, in this case, a determining role while the relationships with the family are the driving force. Thinking that a child is, by nature, confident or not, confident or not in his possibilities, means not considering that parents have a decisive role in establishing a relationship with their child, capable of enhancing him and helping him to grow healthy and strong.

In order for a child to gain confidence in his / her possibilities, it is essential that mom and dad first become aware of the fact that the child is not an extension of them and wonder what their past has been (what childhood they had, how their parents were , by what insecurity they are moved …). This investigation in the maze of one's own experience is the first step to take in order not to sink the child with the weight of expectations that are too rigid and dictated by reasons that, in reality, do not concern him.

Often, in fact, it happens that insecure and unsatisfied parents unload their frustrations on the child by projecting on him what are actually their weaknesses. In this way they crush him, without realizing it, and do not give him the possibility of making mistakes. In the same way, parents who have received little value as children are more likely to transmit to the child a low self-esteem and of their abilities, becoming, unconsciously, the main cause of his insecurity and his loss of trust. These behavioral characteristics that are affirmed in early childhood (it is within 6 years, in fact, that the personality is built and formed), could lead to the 12, years with the awakening that follows the so-called latency period, in problems and adolescent disorders. A child without self-esteem, who does not believe in his potential, could become a depressed adult, unable to adapt to the rules of society and to realize himself as a person, eager only to harm himself and harm those around him.

Psychology in pills: four practical tips

Separate parents: the separation of mom and dad, who the child experiences by blaming himself for what happened, undoubtedly constitutes a problem for the construction of his self-esteem. This always happens, even when the baby is not "pulled in the middle" and used as a battleground between the parties. Insecurity arises, in this case, from feeling responsible and helpless in front of something that appears inevitable and that, at the same time, the child cannot explain. Beyond not using the child for his own benefit, the advice, in situations of this type, is to calm the child by listening to his anger; decolpevolezzarlo clearly explaining that they are things that happen; make him understand that, no matter what happens, the affection that mom and dad feel for him will never fail and should not be questioned. In any case, faced with a separation, the help of an expert is, most of the time, desirable.

Working mom and dad: absent parents, overworked and unable to spend their days at home with the children. A problem? Actually no. A balanced relationship, in fact, does not depend on the amount of hours invested and, therefore, on the time spent together, but on the quality of the investment. Mothers (and fathers) "ghosts" who, however, manage to transmit safety to their children, who serenely live their absence without guilt and without uncertainties, are sometimes preferable to omnipresent but doubtful parents, discontented and unfulfilled . In fact, even the youngest children perceive the mood of those who take care of them and understand when a parent does not esteem himself and is not satisfied with himself regardless of the number of hours dedicated to him. No worries, therefore, for dads and mothers in their careers, provided that this does not actually become a reason for uncertainty and doubt.

Too strict parents: too strict parents are overwhelming for the child and do not help him to gain self-confidence. If the screams, as direct tools of communication with the child, can sometimes be useful, the punishments and punishments are always harmful and create a sense of uncertainty and depreciation in those who suffer them. It is important in the parent-child relationship to create a balance within which good and bad, sweetness and anger, are dosed and integrated. Often, however, it happens that mom and dad are not satisfied with their child's behavior because this does not exactly correspond to the expectations that have been made on him. Children must be left free to make mistakes and understood in their manifestations. If something is wrong, instead of simply blaming the little one ("you're a fool" or "you're a bad boy!" Or "you're not capable"), you should try to understand ("Why did you do this?", "What do you was it through your head? ”).

Cuddle, you never go too far: there are never too many. Pampering, caressing, embracing … are gestures of love that make the little one feel loved and make him feel important in the eyes of his parents. Therefore, one should not be afraid of exaggerating for fear of spoiling the child. On the contrary, affection must always be manifested, especially with the very young, for whom it is the strongest means of communication with the world of adults. In the specific case of a newborn baby, then, it is precisely the simplest gestures, those through which the mother shows her love, to assume importance and to instill confidence in him. Already in the first years of life, in fact, the child knows how much his parents respect each other and based on this unconscious awareness he builds his identity, strengthens it and affirms it. An anxious mother, for example, can only transmit anxiety to her child, just as a nervous, tense, absent mother can only create a detachment with her son by taking away the space she needs to grow strong and balanced.


Category: Mom
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