Self-Esteem comes from DOING Esteemable Acts – one action at a time!
Back in 2011, I received an interesting question from one of my Twitter followers @PRBranding, and I wanted to discuss how relevant that question still is today.
The blunt question was this: “Do you think that America is experiencing a low self-esteem epidemic that, if so, it is rubbing off on our children?”
My answer was and STILL IS – ABSOLUTELY! And it’s not a new phenomenon. It may seem like low self-esteem, depression, and self-loathing are recent occurrences, but in truth, these mental plagues have been developing and building momentum for many years.
To understand this, we have to establish first that the building of self-esteem is a process. Likewise, the tearing down of one’s self-esteem also happens over time. You don’t just wake up one day and hate yourself—you have to be carefully conditioned into the mindset of overwhelming shame.
Esteemable Acts® suggests that over time, inappropriate, unhealthy, unwholesome, bad behavior chinks away at how we see ourselves. We then pass on what we know to our children. They learn by watching us. Here are a few topics to think about:
- Our (adults) addiction to cell phones is increasing our anxiety and perpetuating low self-esteem in our children. It starts with us – we are the role model that kids are looking to when it comes to monitoring screen time.
- Praise effort and ban harsh criticism. Don’t overdo encouragement to the point that it becomes unheard. Find a way to build up instead of tear down – pause before you speak; patience with grace.
- Teach your kids to do the “hard things”. Protecting them from the hard parts of life will only keep them from the gift of developing self-esteem. Find ways to encourage your kids to find solutions to their problems.
- If your child has a learning disability, help your child to focus on his or her feelings, and help them with conflict management rather them guiding them to mask their problems.
- Understand the anxiety that comes not only from peer pressure but from social media. Help your kids to see the positive gains from cell phone apps, like learning, strengthening their talents, showcasing their skills, and campaign for a good cause.
I do think low self-esteem has reached pandemic proportions—you betcha! I also think that with a little self-awareness and being intentional with how we mitigate our own problem-solving, we can be appropriate role models for the generations that come after us.
Francine D. Ward
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