A child’s sense of self is shaped by every interaction he or she has, but is shaped most powerfully by how they are loved and parented in their home. How a child sees themselves will influence every aspect of their life from their education, relationships and over-all well-being. Life is about feeling good enough, competent, loved, successful and happy and the outer world doesn’t always reflect this, so the unconditional love and acceptance at home is the catalyst for their greatness.
6 Truths Our Children Deserve to Hear About Themselves
1. They are amazing: They are amazing just because they are. They don’t have to DO anything to be amazing. They are a gift, deserve to be loved and treasured and need to be disciplined to think and believe in their own greatness. When we see them having low self-esteem we must remind them nothing can stand in the way of their greatness.
2. They are smart: When we raise our children we must raise them to see, believe in and use their intelligence. When our children hear they are smart, and we find every opportunity to reflect this to them through their own actions, we help them believe it about themselves. When they believe they are smart they behave smartly, perform smartly, communicate intelligently and they make wiser choices.
3. They are significant: Our children are precious people. They are unique and different from us and we, as parents, need to celebrate and allow this. When we love them according to their special qualities they learn to see themselves not as different but as genuinely gifted, unique and significant.
4. They are capable: We must parent them to believe they can stand up with all the confidence in the world. They will then believe they can look any person in the face and be proud of the person they are. It won’t matter what people say about them because they know what they think of themselves. When we believe in their capabilities they will naturally live up to higher expectations.
5. They are powerful: As we parent them with love, discipline, support and positive affirmation we teach them no one can stand in the of their dreams. They know that no one can stop them but them, and they understand that getting in their own way is not an option. We believe in them to dig deep and to find the power to surpass all challenge.
6. They are lovable: Our children learn how to love themselves by how we love them. We must always affirm their unconditional lovability. No one is perfect and having confidence doesn’t come as a result of being perfect. Confidence comes from learning to love themselves in their not-so-perfect moments. We must always tell them to love themselves, not just that we love them, but that they need to love themselves.
Little Life Message: Our external parenting becomes the internal dialogue within our children so we must strive to make it positive.
Written by Sherrie Campbell, Ph.D.