Self-esteem is a crucial part of life. Most people who suffer from low self-esteem are teens. And when teens feel worthless, the actions they resort to afterward can be terrible such as addiction, suicide, crime, and might cause assault and battery to other teens or even, at times, to their very own parents.
It can be ordinary for a teenager to have less confidence or to become disappointed with themselves. Everyone who has self-esteem issues sees themselves as unworthy.
Lack of confidence can be particularly challenging for young people because it is the time when they are already exposed to new life happenings, such as getting ready for high school or work and forming new relationships with others.
Low self-esteem is only a state of mind, and it can still change. Teenagers who suffer from this can only improve themselves if they are willing to challenge and face the judgments and negative feelings that they have for themselves.
Here are some of the easiest ways to help teens improve their self-worth to provide a positive view and to have the confidence to become an independent person in the future.
Give them praises and be generous
It is important to commend every child not just for the accomplishments but also for the efforts, even at those times when they fail. Encouraging them to be proud of themselves can be helpful as well. Pride should come from within, and not just in response to external approval.
Teens with low self-esteem might feel awkward in accepting praises. So provide compliments carefully. Don’t just give too many compliments that may still sound insincere. Teens have an internal radar that will be able to tell them if their parents are just trying to make them feel good.
Be careful in giving criticisms
Sometimes parents must correct a child’s behavior or action. However, some criticisms may lead to shame and ridicule.
It is necessary to use “I” statements rather than “You” statements whenever giving criticisms. For example, instead of saying “why are you lazy? Can’t you take care of anything?”, it is better to say “I want you to keep your things in the proper places and not just lying all over your room.”
Encourage them to say positive statements
Psychologists discovered that negative self-talk is after anxiety and depression. That is why positive self-talk is vital in everything we do.
What we think can determine how we feel, and how we feel can also determine how we behave. Thus, it is necessary to guide teens to be positive. Some example of positive self-talk is “I can solve this problem if I don’t give up.”
Motivate them to engage in more activities
Always allow the teens to improve their self-esteem by motivating them to participate in extracurricular activities at school. Doing activities such as sports are not only teaching them to work diligently to reach their goals, but it also teaches them to have a sense of identity.
Encouraging the teens to join in contests and competitions can boost their resiliency. And they learn to face success with appreciation, and failure with optimism.
Set as a good role model
Teenagers can learn what is it like to have a healthy self-esteem by seeing a role model. Every parent should be conscious of their actions and attitudes, specifically when their child is around.
Be a good example by asserting yourself politely in public, addressing issues with a positive outlook, and showing self-confidence. The teens might develop low self-esteem if they see pessimistic family members who hesitate about their abilities and consistently reacts everything with negativity.
Ask for an assistance
If the teenager has a huge problem with self-esteem that generates serious self-doubt, depressions, anxiety, or mentions of suicide, seek assistance from a psychologist or any mental health professional. The professional may be able to reveal deeper reasons for having low self-esteem or may suggest a treatment plan or medication to address the symptoms.
Additional guides to keep in mind
It is important to think of the things that the child might do that doesn’t display high self-esteem. Here are some of the things that need to keep in mind.
- It is better to recognize a child’s achievements and success, rather than to compare him or her negatively with other kids, particularly his or her brothers and sisters.
- Always control the temper and never yell at the children, especially not in public. They will just feel ashamed and embarrassed.
- Avoid threatening to leave them if they fail to do what you want, or never say things which indicate that life would be better without them. It might only hurt the children’s self-esteem.
The development of a healthy self-esteem is extremely vital to the happiness and success of teenagers. Self-esteem from teens often comes from being aware that they are loved, and they belong to a family that values them. It also comes from being encouraged by the things that are important to them and praised for the things that they achieved.