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Skills for Life - Self Esteem and Resilience

One of the most important gifts a parent can offer their child is to prepare them for life. Imagine how good you’ll feel when it’s time for your children to leave home, if they have good self esteem and are resilient. We all know that life can bring so many different experiences and life lessons - some wonderful and others really challenging - while we have no control over this - with the right help, your children can develop the life skills to be able to respond positively to anything that life brings.

Parents are the most important influence when it comes to developing a positive sense of self and good self esteem.  Self esteem develops over time from when children are really young. Here are two parenting tips that will help your child develop good self esteem and feel good about who they are. Children learn by mirroring what their parents do and say…you know that right? This becomes painfully obvious when you hear your own words or see your actions played back to you by your child. So, it makes sense then that the most powerful way to help your children develop good self esteem is to live it yourself. Your children will watch and learn from you if you offer them a good example. Spending time with your children will also make a world of difference. Children know that if you make the take time be with them - this shows them that they are important to you and that goes a long way to helping them feel good about themselves.

A strong sense of self goes a long way when times are tough, but having a resilient child goes even further. How do your children handle life’s downs? Are they OK if they lose a race, fail a test, fall over and hurt themselves or have a disappointment? Resilience is the ability to get up and move on when things are tough. You can help your children learn this skill from a really young age. For example, if your child falls over and they are not too hurt, do you rush over to rescue them or do you guide them so they can help themselves. You can use words like “oh dear you’ve fallen over, roll over onto your tummy and push yourself up with your arms…that’s right darling come over here…”. In that way you are helping them to help themselves as you won’t always be there to pick them up. Do you allow your child to win every game? Can you see how helpful it would be to allow them to lose sometimes so they can learn how to cope with loss?

There are so many ways you can help your child develop good self esteem and resilience and it does not have to take a lot of time…it just takes care and know how. 


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