So many children who come to coaching feel alone and lost because they equate having lots of friends with their popularity. As if somehow their self esteem depended on it. It doesn’t.
These days I love my own company, but as a child I remember feeling like I didn’t quite fit in or at times, questioned if people actually liked me.
We all feel alone or like nobody gets it at times
This is why so many children benefit from Smiley creative coaching workshops where they discover they are not alone. Hanging out and having fun with 9 other children who feel the same is super validating. Think about when you tell your friend something which has been playing on your mind for ages and she says, ‘Oh I’ve done that!’ or ‘Oh yes I do that all the time!’ and you are left feeling understood. It helps when people connect with empathy instead of judgement. I think we’ve all had a ‘friend’ who says: ‘Don’t be ridiculous!’ or shames us into feeling worse: ‘OMG I can’t believe you did that! You will never live that down!’ Urrr yeah cheers and I will never come to you again when I’m feeling bad about myself.
Today’s playground hierarchy echoes my unforgettable experience:
- The popular trendy kids who had all the latest gear and gadgets
- The studious geeky bunch who loved to learn and got top grades
- The sporty crew who were in the A team and won cups for the school
With maturity, I can see now how these children were finding their identity in an accomplishment or something which gave them status. When you take that away; when they fail or their parents start saying no to their constant demands for new trainers or the latest phone, they are left feeling alone. Often these children are chameleons adapting to their environment so they avoid feeling empty inside. If you want to grow your child’s self esteem, I have written this helpful blog post 8 Ways to Raise Your Child’s Self Esteem.
I didn’t belong in a group but I used to float around being everybody’s friend. The truth was: I didn’t know myself so how could I possibly know what sort of friend would be a good fit for me? Relationships are like making the pieces of a jigsaw fit together to reveal your own unique blueprint.
Here are my top 3 tips if you’re feeling alone:
- Remember that other people never determine our worth and not everybody will like us. Accept that and yourself.
- Introverted people tend to prefer one to one connections over groups. Accept that your child may prefer not to have lots of friends (you may be an extrovert).
- Being alone is not the same as feeling lonely. Some of us like to use quiet time to recharge (see point 2). When we feel lonely we have lost that all important connection with ourselves. We have stopped being our own best friend and we are running around trying to find it from something outside of us. It’s inside of us. I recommend daily meditation (you could try a free App like Calm.com or Smiley’s Sweet Dreams Bedtime Pack which has positive affirmations on loop to infuse your child’s brain while they drift off to sleep ) to spend some time with the ‘friend’ that you miss the most – yourself!
Smiley Coaching can help your child to grow their self awareness and learn life skills to form healthy friendships
If your child feels left out or is being bullied, you are more than welcome to join us for our next Friendship Know How or Secret Ingredients of Self Confidence creative coaching workshops. You can find out more here. These are for 7-10 year olds so if your child is older, they may benefit from a series of 121 coaching sessions with me to help them find their way again.
Do you want to know what will help your child grow up confident + happy?
Watch this video and find out how my ebook ‘How to Rediscover the Magic of Parenting in a Busy World’ can help you increase your child’s self esteem.