I have posted an earlier article (7 self esteem boosters for children) which gives an outline of how the parent or the caregiver can help. Now I want to inform you on how to take action on the theory. I’ll walk you though how I do it. You will be able to look over my shoulder and do the same.
These are generally father and son activities, but many of them can work equally well with daughters and mothers participating.
This article will show you how to create and enjoy activities which help in building self esteem in children.
1 – How to plan to spend time with your children
2 – How to choose and plan an activity to do together
3 – Doing the chosen activity together
4 – Joining a community
5 – Letting the children fly
Holidays are perfect for spending time with the children. Often though, you have to plan to make this time. This is your choice. You and you alone are the one who controls your time. Time is not something you can save or bank for a later day. Time is your life, now!
I’m extremely lucky as I work from home. Therefore, I can plan my own time. I sleep for 8 hours, work for 8 hours and that gives me 8 hours to play. I’m able to plan to spend 2 to 3 hours on each day of the holidays on activities aimed at building confidence in children. This is the first step; you must make the choice how much time you will spend with the children on the activity.
So what can you do together? Well that of course depends on the age of the child. It could be sand castle building or vegetable plot creation. Make a list of different things you could do together. See what will attract your children. I find it great fun, to surf the internet together, to seek out activities on your list and see how the children respond. The children love this responsibility and it is a good start in building self esteem in children. If they do not get excited, then never mind, move onto the next activity on your list. I’ve been surprised at what ages the children pick up different activities and let go of others. Our two boys were still playing with their Brio wooden train set long after we had built a WWII battlefield complete with Hornby trains and airfix models.
If you decide upon an activity, where you have an interest or its something you have always wanted to do, then even better.
We’re located close to a beach here in Finland so we decided together to try windsurfing this summer. Our two boys are just beginning their teenage years and are good swimmers.
What resources or support do you need to carry out the activity? For sand castle building you just need to find a couple of buckets and spades, and you are set to go. For vegetable plot creation there will be more materials to obtain: timber, soil, young plants, protective netting etc.
For windsurfing, I needed to check the local beaches and find a windsurfing school who could provide lessons and rent equipment. So again there is planning to do before you can try the activity. Again you can do some internet research together. You will be surprised at how fast they can obtain the required information. Again, this is another activity promoting responsibility and greatly assists in building self esteem in children.
Let the action begin. Remember this is not a competition! The aim of the activity is to promote building self esteem in children. You want them to enjoy the activity. The more they enjoy the activity, the more they will practice. The more they practice the more they will shine. Once they excel then they really start to build high self esteem. You want to encourage them along the way. It is their effort to master the activity which must be praised, not the level they achieve. This is a hugely important point – it is the effort that is praised. This will program them that it is the effort that counts.
If success comes early so be it, but the children will be programmed to keep at it until they succeed. Children truly appreciate it when parents and carers recognise their efforts rather than their results. As my 13 year old son said this week, “I’m really proud of my efforts to succeed at windsurfing. It takes a lot of practice and effort. Football is so easy; you just have to kick a ball!”
So those are the moments I live for. To be present as the children’s self esteem is built block by block. There is an excellent product by Dr Joe Rubino for overcoming negative cellular memory in elevating children’s self esteem.
Quite often activities are undertaken as part of a community. Vegetable plots on a local allotment are extremely social places. Children’s plots can be appreciated by the other allotment members. In our case, the windsurfing school has other surfers on the water who often compliment the boys on how they are progressing.
Compliments from others are powerful in building self esteem in children. Teenagers especially look for acceptance in the wider world. Sometimes, this is a big step to take. We have found that self hypnosis products by Uncommon Knowledge can actually help in overcoming a fear of social occasions. Their products can even be used for dealing with exam stresses.
Let the children fly. If they take to the activity, support them in their efforts. Let them spread their wings. Remember it is the effort you are praising, not the result.
These are the first, essential steps needed to prepare them to leave the nest. The final act for the parent is to allow the children stand on their own two feet. Once they can do this then it is time to kick them out from the family home.
Here, is a list of activities which are all terrific for building self esteem in children.
I hope you can think of some more, especially mother and daughter ones. Better still post your stories and experiences
Self Esteem activities for children:
Sand castle building
Vegetable plot creation
Preparing a course for a meal – salad
Team games – football, ice hockey etc
Hornby trains and airfix models
Body weight exercises – press ups, sit ups
Creating and maintaining a blog
Cross country ski ing, skating, snow boarding
Trips to hockey, football and other games
Best regards and be free!