How to Spot and Stop Low Self-Esteem in Your Child

Did you know that 1 in 5 children experience low self-esteem, impacting their confidence, happiness, and overall well-being? As a parent, it can be heartbreaking to see your child struggling with feelings of inadequacy, withdrawal, or negativity. But the good news is, that you can play a vital role in helping them build healthy self-esteem.

This blog will equip you with the knowledge and tools to identify the indicators of low self-esteem in your child, and most importantly, empower them to build a healthy sense of self-worth.

Indicators of Low Self-Esteem
1. Bullying or Being Bullied:
Both being a bully and being bullied are signs of low self-esteem. This falls under the category of changes in social interaction. Some parents might even feel proud if their child is the bully, thinking that their child can’t be intimidated. However, this could indicate that the child is battling with low self-esteem.

2. Changes in Behavior: Noticeable alterations in your child’s behavior can be a sign of low self-esteem.

3. Changes in Self-Expression: If your child’s way of expressing themselves changes, it could be a sign of low self-esteem.

5. Changes in Social Interaction: Changes in the way your child interacts socially can also indicate low self-esteem.

Children who feel powerless may become targets, while those struggling with their self-worth may attempt to assert control. It has become extremely important that we shine the light on issues concerning low self-esteem in Children, We can no longer remain silent. If we don’t address these issues, we risk harming future generations.

Low self-esteem doesn’t only affect the child, it also affects adults. Many adults struggle with initiating and maintaining friendships due to low self-esteem. All their lives they second-guess ourselves, feel like they don’t matter. These can be traced back to low self-esteem. These are effects of practices that can lead to low self-esteem. This might lead to fear of rejection, fear of inadequacy in social situations, and social withdrawal. Some of you may be well-dressed, and working in good environments, yet still feel inadequate. This is still low self-esteem.

A child with low self-esteem will find it difficult to express their opinion, leading to a lack of assertiveness. I recall a woman who joined our Inner Circle because her youngest child was very assertive, unlike her other children who were very obedient. But have you considered that obedience isn’t always a virtue?

We often domesticate our children in the name of parenting, shutting down their potential. We take pride in saying, “Once I speak, my children don’t utter a word.” But there’s a thin line between subduing a child’s assertiveness and proper parenting. It’s not just about following instructions; it’s about your children being assertive even while following instructions.

If your children can’t say no to you, they won’t be able to say no to people outside your home. A child recently asked me to do something I had no business doing. She pleaded, “Please don’t say no,” thinking it would make me say yes. But I said no. Why should I please you at the expense of displeasing myself or putting myself in an uncomfortable position?

Understanding Behavioral Changes Due to Low Self-Esteem

Low self-esteem can lead to significant behavioral changes in children and teenagers. These changes can manifest in various ways, including withdrawal and isolation, avoidance of challenges, and perfectionism. Understanding these behaviors is crucial for parents, educators, and caregivers to provide the right support and guidance.

1. Withdrawal and Isolation
Children with low self-esteem often withdraw from social activities and isolate themselves from family and friends. This behavior is not merely a reflection of their personality but could be a sign of deeper issues. Teenagers, in particular, may become withdrawn due to the numerous changes happening in their lives. They may feel the need to shut out the world, and our words can play a significant role in this process. Our words shape realities, and if a child begins to withdraw and isolate themselves, they might be trying to navigate their environment without drawing attention to themselves.

2. Avoidance of Challenges
Another behavioral change is the avoidance of challenges due to fear of failure. The fear of failure can be so overwhelming that children hide their failures and results, leading to a reluctance to take on new challenges or engage in activities that require effort. They might develop a preference for tasks they’re already proficient in, avoiding anything new.

3. Perfectionism
Perfectionism is another defense mechanism adopted by some children with low self-esteem. They strive for flawlessness to gain approval, but the fear of not meeting these high standards can lead to frustration and self-criticism. They put in so much effort to build a perfect persona to please others, often at the expense of their own well-being. Perfectionism can hinder your ability to try new things and be confident. You might find yourself constantly telling yourself that it’s not perfect enough, it’s not excellent enough. But remember, excellence is not perfection.

4. Changes in Self-Expression
Changes in self-expression often start with negative self-talk. This involves the individual constantly belittling themselves, expressing doubt in their abilities, or using phrases like ‘I can’t.’ Negative self-talk can be a significant barrier to personal growth and achievement.

5. Physical Changes Indicating Low Self-Esteem
Physical changes can indicate low self-esteem. This can manifest in posture, avoiding eye contact, and signs of nervousness. These physical cues may indicate discomfort or lack of confidence. For instance, nail-biting could be a sign of low self-esteem.

How TO Stop Low Self-Esteem In Your Child
1. Understand the Influence of Parenting: Recognize that parenting significantly influences a child’s self-esteem. Good intentions alone are insufficient for effective parenting. The right knowledge and strategies are crucial.

2. Establish the Right Systems: We don’t rise to the level of our intentions, but we fall to the level of our systems. Ensure the right systems are in place for effective parenting.

3. Avoid Over-Criticism: Being overly critical when providing feedback can undermine a child’s confidence. Focus on what’s right instead of what’s wrong.

4. Differentiate Between Correction and Discipline: Correction is not the same as discipline. Discipline is about teaching, not rectifying mistakes.

5. Implement Effective Discipline: Discipline is about teaching with love, understanding, empathy, and compassion, not about criticizing or correcting.

6. Take Time to Calm Down: If your child makes a mistake, take time to calm down before you address it. The quality of the message you’re conveying is more important than the timing.

7. Break the Cycle of Criticism: Constant criticism can lead to self-doubt and fear. If you experienced this growing up, it’s important to recognize it and consciously choose a different approach with your own children. Offer constructive feedback and encouragement instead of solely focusing on what’s wrong.

8. Provide a Loving Environment: Offer love, understanding, empathy, and compassion in your interactions with your children. This helps build their self-esteem and confidence.

9. Encourage Effort Over Outcome: Focus on the effort your child puts into their activities rather than just the end result. This fosters a growth mindset and helps them learn from their experiences.

10. Avoid Comparisons: Each child is unique and develops at their own pace. Comparing them to others can lead to feelings of inadequacy. Celebrate their individuality and support their journey.

11. Set Realistic Expectations: Avoid setting unrealistic expectations that can lead to a constant sense of failure. Tailor your expectations to your child’s abilities and stage of development.

14. Allow Them to Experience Challenges: Overprotecting children from failure and adversity can hinder their growth. Allow them to face challenges, make mistakes, and learn from them. This builds resilience and self-confidence.

Continual learning and growth are essential for effective parenting. It’s not about being perfect, but about being open to learning and making positive changes in your parenting approach. This will help you raise confident, resilient, and emotionally intelligent children who are equipped to thrive in the world. I’ve written several books to assist parents on this journey, click here to order our books.

Reading these books will help you understand what to expect and how to navigate through various phases of your child’s development. Each book I’ve written supports parents in their journey of raising confident, emotionally intelligent, and resilient children. They address specific challenges and provide practical strategies and insights to help parents navigate through various stages of their children’s growth and development. Whether you’re dealing with sibling rivalry, communication issues, or guiding your child through puberty, there’s a resource available to support you on your parenting journey. Visit our store here to order our resources.

If you lack emotional control, all the things I’ve shared here will be like pouring water on a phone. That’s why being part of the Emotional Intelligence Parent Course will be one of the best things that could happen to you this year on your parenting journey. You need to learn how to parent. If you don’t, you’ll make a mess. You need to be in a parenting academy. You can order the just concluded Becoming an Emotionally Intelligent Course here to start your emotional intelligence journey.

3 thoughts on “How to Spot and Stop Low Self-Esteem in Your Child

  1. Connect to Correct is just for me. Parenting is about me, working on myself first before I can help my children. Thank you coach

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *