Do you know how important you are or how you make a difference to the world?
These are some of the questions I ask the children who come to coaching. Sadly, children who do not recognise their own worth see themselves as not good enough and end up struggling in life – friendships, school work and even managing their emotions becomes hard work.
“High self esteem is our passport to happiness in adult life.” ~ Smiley Coach Lisa Parkes
If we know we are good at our very core, life takes on a very different vibe and we are more resilient to set backs and disappointments. We feel happy from the inside out. We don’t rely on external factors such as fashion, physical appearance, gadgets and other material things to make them feel good.
Just as you would create healthy habits for your child’s physical body, how about creating some healthy habits for their emotional well-being?
1) Help your child celebrate their uniqueness – help them discover their personal qualities such as kindness, thoughtfulness or intelligence. Whatever it is that you find beautiful about your child, tell them and tell them often.
2) Watch yourself – notice the way you talk about yourself. Children are the world’s greatest mimics. If you want your child to know their own worth, then work on developing yours too. Make a promise that you will choose to use positive language and not put yourself down. Gently correct your child if they are judgemental about themselves.
3) Notice the Good – Make it a point of discussion at the dinner table or a game you play before you tuck them in at night by listing 2 things they are proud of. It can be as simple as sharing, smiling at somebody or a random act of kindness. People who focus on the good things in their life feel good and consequently attract more of the same to them.
4) Connect – Actress Goldie Hawn’s book ’10 Mindful Minutes’ highlights the amazing benefits of going within to find yourself. Children who are able to relax and tune into themselves find it easy to manage their stress levels and their big emotions like anger, anxiety and sadness.
5) Foster Independence – It’s a parent’s job to give their child roots and wings. You want them to fly away and be OK without you there. So, make sure you give your child choices that are age appropriate. Encourage them to make decisions for themselves. Also let them have a go and allow them to try new things without taking over or doing it for them. Show them you have faith in them. Trust is the key.
6) Positive Thinking – This isn’t just about pretending everything is OK. This is about getting your child to watch their thoughts. You want their internal voice and the way they speak to themselves to be the way they would speak to a friend. Not a harsh one that beats them up when they have lost their path or one that worries about what may go wrong. A good tool for rewriting negative thoughts is affirmations. An affirmation is like a mantra: a positive word or a phrase we repeat over and over again until it becomes our truth. You can get a whole box of Smiley Affirmations here.
7) Discover A Passion – Help your child find something they love and are good at. Joyful confidence shows them how they can be a creator of their own lives and not a slave to what other people expect of them. (It will help manage screen time too!)
8) Stop Comparing – The only person we need to compare ourselves to is the person we were yesterday. When we feel as if we have to keep up with the Jones’s, we lose sight of who we are and what we want. We are all different and competition breeds insecurity as there will always be somebody smarter, richer, fatter, thinner or poorer than you!
If you have any questions about your child, please reach out and get in touch. I’m here to help you.