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Teaching Self-Esteem

     Self esteem is important in all aspects of our lives - it impacts our success and happiness. Self image and self-esteem go hand in hand - and self esteem influences attitudes about what we can do, how we can cope and how to get along with others.

     Self esteem made up of how we see ourselves and how believe others see us. Good self-esteem is feeling both loveable and capable. Parent need to nurture both.

     Feeling loveable consists of feeling loved and worthwhile for who you are, without any conditions. To help your teen feel this you need to praise unique intrinsic qualities about them (i.e., their creativeness or persistence).

     Feeling capable is feeling strong and competent, proud of ones ability to achieve things, competent with life skills.

Here are a few points to remember when parenting with respect to fostering self-esteem:

* As an adult, you know that every person is unique and special; your child does not know this. Teach him how and why he is unique.

* Praise is only valuable when it is genuine and descriptive. Use meaningful praise that describes what you notice, like, or approve.

* When children are allowed to do as many things for themselves as possible, they feel proud and competent.

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