Dr. Stanley Coopersmith, who has studied self-esteem in children, found that children need three things to boost their self-esteem. Parents must give children acceptance, clearly defined limits, and respect.
One of the most effective ways to give your children the acceptance they need, Coopersmith has found, is by telling them that you love them. You can:
- Say, "I love you" often. Be sure to say it first thing in the morning and last thing at night.
- Attend school events with your child.
- Take photographs of your child on special occasions.
- Spend regular time alone with your child.
- Celebrate your child's accomplishments.
- Give your child a hug and a big smile whenever you greet him.
- Ask your child to recommend a favorite book for you to read.
- When your child says, "Watch me," take time to watch her. Afterwards, say, "Great job!"
- When your child says, "Read me a story," treat it as the most wonderful invitation you'll receive all day.
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