Empowering kids with a healthy self-esteem

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) Healthy self-esteem is like a child’s armor against the challenges of the world. Kids who know their strengths and weaknesses and feel good about themselves seem to have an easier time handling conflicts and resisting negative pressures.  

Part of empowering our kids is helping them develop a healthy self-esteem. That includes balancing their self-worth with compassion for others. Dr. Brett VanTol of Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services has some tips for parents.

Empower Kids with Self-Compassion

  • Reduces depression and anxiety
  • Reduces stress, improves life satisfaction
  • Improves motivation, connectedness
  • Increases self responsibility & self-worth 

Warning Signs for Low Self-Compassion

  • High self-criticism, low self-affirmation
  • Stops taking care of self: diet, sleep, hygiene
  • Avoids challenges, quits, cheats to win
  • Makes excuses, grades fall, social withdrawal 

Raising Confident Kids

  • Model self-caring
  • Engage in a community service project together
  • Tell kids we love them just the way they are
  • Notice positive behavior and thank them
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