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Self Esteem

How to help if your child is experiencing low self-esteem

What is self-esteem?

Self-esteem is how someone thinks about themselves. Being confident means being comfortable with how they look and how they feel; it means feeling good about themselves, their abilities, and their thoughts. Low self-esteem is when someone is lacking in confidence and doubts their own decisions and abilities.

Signs you might see in your child

Your child may have poor eye contact, defensive body-posture, be withdrawn and have poor levels of participation in class activities.

Your child may engage in negative self talk, such as, “I’m not good enough” or, “I can’t do this” or frequently show signs of absorbing negative comments such as, “My mum/dad says I’m not….”.

How you can support your child

  • Focus on positives and find something to praise your child about, such as being kind or being good at sport, etc.
  • Encourage your child to do more enjoyable activities – things you know your child previously enjoyed.
  • Focus on ‘small wins’, don’t chase big achievements. Do the little things and use them as a springboard. Your child should be encouraged to feel proud of even small achievements.
  • Use the Five Ways to Wellbeing as a tool to support your child, maybe use it to make some goals together
  • Explore positive role models and discuss what makes your child feel good about unique differences.
  • Discuss and practice positive body language, encouraging good posture and eye-contact.

If your child is still giving you cause for concern, you may wish to discuss with your school or your GP

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