Simple Ways to Build Your Baby's Self-Esteem

Helping your child thrive in life.

Posted May 05, 2012

It is wonderful that parents are giving so much care and attention to raising their children to feel good about themselves. When children have a positive self-esteem they get along better in life. In order to accomplish this important goal, I want to assure you that you do not have to be a perfect parent. There are many simple things you can do each day to nurture your child's good feeling about himself.

1. Smile at your baby often. Your face becomes a mirror of his self-worth. When he looks into your adoring face, he will think he's the greatest.

2. Spend time with her. As you gently bathe her, snuggle her in your arms or change her diaper to make her more comfortable, you will give her the feeling that she is important. Spend time talking to her, singing to her, or reading to her, and your child will feel that she is special. To a child time=attention=love. Your child then internalizes all these good feelings and concludes that she is valuable.

3. Praise your baby and his accomplishments frequently. For instance tell him, “Good job” when he burps, or reaches out and touches his mobile. When he sits or stands for the first time, shout “Hurray”. Your words will convey that he is capable and foster his self-confidence. As he grows, hang his drawings on the fridge, even if they are only scribbles, and he will feel he is appreciated

4. Choose your words carefully when you speak with your child. A parent's words can powerfully effect a child's self-image. Listen as you speak and step into your child's shoes. This is the best way to determine if you are communicating in a positive way and bolstering his self-esteem. If you feel you have been too negative, you can always say, “I'm sorry. Let's start over.”

Self-esteem is not built in one moment's interaction. It is your on-going positive approaches over time that are internalized and your child grows up feeling good about himself.

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