One of the most valuable things you can offer your child is a good sense of self. Children who have high self-esteem feel loved and capable, and they grow up to be happy and productive adults. Consider these dos and don’ts to help your child develop a healthy self-image as he develops.

Do give children choices. Giving children choices, within a fair range of possibilities pre-selected by you, empowers them. You might, for example, offer your youngster the choice of eggs or pancakes for breakfast. Learning to make easy decisions when your child is young can help him prepare for the more challenging decisions he’ll encounter as he gets older.

Don’t do everything for him/herAllow your child to figure things out on his/her own time. It may be quicker and simpler to dress your preschooler, but allowing him/her to do so on her own, allows them to master new skills. She’ll feel more capable and confident as she takes on new challenges.

Do let your child know no one is perfect. And make it clear that no one is expecting him/her to be perfect. Your reaction to your child’s mistakes and disappointments shapes how he reacts.

Don’t gush or offer insincere praise. Children are experts at spotting phony comments and false praise. Praise your youngster frequently, but make sure your praises are specific so they don’t seem empty. For example, rather of replying to your child’s most recent artwork with, “Wow, that’s fantastic. “I really appreciate how you depicted the complete family,” try something like, “You’re the finest artist in the world.” You even went into depth about Daddy’s beard.”

Do assign age-appropriate household chores. Assign duties to youngsters such as setting the table, walking the dog, and folding the clothes. They’ll gain confidence in their abilities and improve their problem-solving abilities.

Don’t compare your kids to each otherInstead, appreciate each one’s individuality and special gifts.

If you want to make a point, don’t call kids names or use sarcasm.  Never dismiss your child’s emotions. Take a little pause while you’re furious so you don’t say anything you’ll regret. Remember that you may hate a kid’s conduct without hating the youngster. Make sure your youngster understands the difference.

Do spend one-on-one time with your child.  Schedule some alone time with your child at least once a week, whether it’s going out to lunch or going on a bike ride. This is an excellent time to discuss what’s on her mind and to strengthen your relationship.


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