How Can I Build My Child’s Self Esteem?

Sharon Buchalter

Posted on June 05 2019

How Can I Build My Child’s Self Esteem?


Having healthy self esteem can affect every aspect of your life.

It helps you be more confident and assertive in your decisions and opinions, realistic in your expectations, secure in your relationships, and better able to handle conflict.

To have a healthy self esteem is not to be confused with being narcissistic or conceded.

Rather someone who reflects a healthy self esteem will be positive about life, comfortable with themselves, and confident. Your self esteem can fluctuate throughout your life but tends to stay in the same range depending on how you feel about yourself.



Self esteem starts to develop from a young age and is influenced by many factors:

how others see you

how you see yourself

how you are treated

your age

your status in society

your experiences at home and school

social media

Although there are several things that can affect your child’s self esteem, YOU can be their largest influence. Many of your child’s beliefs about themselves and about the world will first begin in the home.

Here are four things YOU can do to help your child gain a healthy self esteem about themselves:

1     Have Realistic Expectations.

Many parents try to live through their children and expect them to outperform themselves. You wouldn’t expect a 1st grader to read and comprehend the whole Harry Potter series. So, you also can’t expect your child to never make mistakes, have perfect grades, and always be happy. Some parents even compare their child to other children.

Instead, help them do the best they can do at their age and stage of life they are at. Children ultimately may end up doing as you do, and less what you say. So, they can learn immensely from the example you set and the lifestyle you live.



2     Recognize Their Accomplishments

Your children adore your adoration. They will eat up every smile, compliment, and applause from you.

However, the key to this one is to recognize ALL of their accomplishments— small and large. Show them you’re proud of them when they get an “A” in class, when they win their soccer game, when they learn how to bake a new dessert or tie their shoes, or when they go out of their way to be kind to someone.



3     Give Positive Feedback

Children are learning new things day by day. Most of these lessons are learned by making mistakes. If you give your child positive feedback, rather than bashing them for their weakness, they will respond positively. You will gain their trust and they will come to you throughout their life for help and advice.

They will also learn not to devalue themselves when they mess up in life and become open to constructive criticism and feedback. They will respond positively to conflict which builds up their self esteem.



4     Reflect Your Own Healthy Self Esteem Outwardly

Your children learn how to treat themselves, first, by how you treat yourself. If you are constantly saying negative things about yourself, your child will be more critical of themselves. If you gossip often or doubt yourself often, your children will catch on to your insecurity.

Rather, compliment yourself, respond to conflict positively, and show your child how much you are proud and comfortable with yourself (faults and all) through your words and actions.


Your child learns how to handle conflict by the way you hand it. They learn how to treat others and themselves by the way you treat others and yourself. Even if you struggle with maintaining a healthy self esteem, your child can learn to embrace their own flaws as you set the example.

When your child is young, their world revolves around you— and how you react to their world makes a world of difference.

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