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10 Things That Can Hurt Your Child's Self-Esteem

Self-Esteem
Self-esteem.  We all want our kids to have it.  We hear tons about HOW to improve our child's self-esteem. What we sometimes don't know are the things that can actually HURT our child's burgeoning sense of self.
A World of Endless Possibilities
When our kids have self-esteem, the world is an endless source of possibilities.  Possessing an awareness of one’s self that includes confidence and the ability to be an effective agent in one’s own life has a significant impact upon happiness across the lifespan.  The question is how to help our kids develop and maintain it for life.  Helping to instill this characteristic is not as elusive as you might think. 
There are many parenting strategies that contribute to raising ethical, successful and confident kids. Bloom: 50 Things to Say, Think and Do with Anxious, Angry and Over-the-Top Kids, which I co-authored with Dr. Lynne Kenney, highlights an approach which is the most promising way I know to raise incredible peop…

How BIG is Your Child's Anger?

What Size is Your Child's Anger?
Whenever I work with a child with anger issues, I like to have them describe the size of their anger.  Is it small, medium, large or super-sized?  Some kids never move beyond "medium" while others go from "small" to "super-sized" in mere seconds.  We can thank temperament for that, in large part. 
If you parent a child with a strong temperament and BIG feelings, you are probably no stranger to "large" and "super-sized" displays of anger.  I have certainly seen my fair share, both as a mom and as a therapist. 
The Good News
The good news is, we can help our kids learn how to regulate BIG feelings by giving them opportunities to talk about their feelings, name their feelings and identify ways to "shrink down" the intenstiy of it all.  I know that this works, because I've seen it in action (both at home, and at my office).
Parents
Simply download our free printable to start the discussio…

Why Labeling Feelings is So Important: Beyond Mad, Sad & Glad

Helping kids put their feelings into words (affect labeling) can help them better navigate strong, negative emotional experiences. We tend to "keep it simple" when talking about feelings with young children and may often stick to the basics, such as mad, glad and sad. That is all well and good. Once our children have mastered that, we can move on to a bigger variety of emotionally descriptive words. We can increase our child's understanding of a bigger expanse of feelings by broadening the terms we use.

Stumped about what feeling words to use beyond the three aforementioned? Try some of these on for size...









BraveCheerfulWorried JoyfulFrightenedCalmExcitedConfusedFrustratedCuriousFriendlyShy IgnoredLonelyInterestedProudEmbarrassedJealousAngryBored Surprised SillyUncomfortableStubbornSafeRelievedPeaceful OverwhelmedLovingCranky

Why it Matters:

We've long thought that naming our feelings could help us manage negative emotional states, but we weren't quite sure how exact…