Clothing, food, and shelter are staples that we all need to survive. As a parent, your first and foremost responsibility is to ensure that your children have access to these basic needs on a daily basis. However, your parental responsibilities extend far beyond providing tangible objects. Often, the most valuable gifts you can pass on to your children are not things that can be seen or touched. This week, your trusted online counselor is here to talk about one of the most valuable (yet intangible) gifts you can bestow upon your children: high self-esteem.
The Importance Of A Child’s Self-Esteem
The value of a child’s self-esteem cannot be underestimated. Self-esteem is different than cockiness or being “full of yourself” – self-esteem means knowing your worth as a human being and respecting that value. As children grow up, they become exposed to countless different people, ideas, beliefs, relationships, and ways of life. Because children with high self-esteem know their value, they are less likely to submit to peer pressure in an attempt to gain acceptance from their peers. Children with low self-esteem, on the other hand, are often much more likely to become involved in detrimental or abusive relationships and engage in other types of risky behavior.
National Teen Self-Esteem Month
In recognition of the incredible importance of self-esteem in young people, May has been designated National Teen Self-Esteem Month. Groups and organizations all over the nation participate in this great cause by hosting various workshops, programs, and events centered around the theme “I Am Worth More.”
Self-esteem isn’t something that can be taught in a classroom. Self-esteem is something that must be instilled in them by their parents, teachers, friends, extended family members, employers, and other adult role models. The closer the adult role model is to the teenager, the greater his/her influence will be on the teen’s self-esteem. Peers are also powerful influences; the types of reinforcement your teen receives from her peer group will likely have a strong impact on her self-esteem as well.
Boosting Your Teen’s Self-Esteem
As parents, you will have the strongest influence over your teenager’s self-esteem. In honor of National Teen Self-Esteem Month, your online mental health counselor is offering a quick list of some of the ways you, as the parent, can help improve your teen’s self-esteem.
What are your other favorite ways to boost your son’s or daughter’s self-esteem? Let me know in the comments below!
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