In the mid of the hustle and bustle of our hectic days as mothers and while we are running errands, feeding, bathing, showering, and driving our children around, we tend to forget the bigger picture of parenting. Beneath those enjoyable moments (but they can be quite tough and miserable sometimes), there is the shadow of the parents’ conscience which keeps gauging our minds as how to help raise our children into becoming independent well-rounded future citizens. What should we do to help them succeed? How can we ensure they are also happy?
The secrets of successful and happy individuals are confidence and a positive self-esteem. We, as parents, have a crucial role to play in developing those characteristics in our children’s personalities. In fact, I will share four main components that I have been following which I believe help in building children’s self-esteem and confidence:
1. Never sneak away from your child:
My husband and I always told our children that we will be going out for a while, and stressed on the fact that we will come back later. We made sure to let them know how much we loved them and explained to them that they are going to stay with their grandmother in the meantime. Like all other children, they used to cry for the first couple of outings. It is very normal for children to react in such a way and most probably they want to go with you. But eventually, they learned that we always come back and that we are always there for them. Therefore, our children learned to trust us and felt safe even when we were not around and we built a positive self-esteem. .
2. Never lie to your children:
Honesty is a key factor in parenting. Whatever their question is or their demand, a parent needs to be honest about it. Take the time to explain your reasons behind your behaviour or answers. Even when you do, make some more time and hear if they have something else to add. Another way to build confidence is to help our children express themselves and share their opinion. Their voice needs to be heard and we are all ears. One of the good examples that come to mind is when we take the children for vaccination. We tell them that it will hurt a bit, and explain why it is important for them to have it.
3. Be patient:
With too much on your plate and a lot of voices saying ‘mommy’ at the same time, being patient is one of the hardest things about parenting. A glimpse of what I encounter at home almost every afternoon with all five of my children (bless them) at home is as follows; the twins are nagging (even though diaper change, checked; feeding, checked; teething, Panadol given an hour ago so checked; toys and books, right within their reach also checked…), my number three wants to play snakes and ladders, my second son has a few inquiries about life and probably a couple of good arguments supporting playing Wii on weekdays, and my eldest has homework but doesn’t feel like finishing it. Most probably, the phone will also be ringing in the background and someone is always at the door… What would I do? Where do I start? Sometimes, I feel like screaming and running but then again how does that help! After a lot of years of practice, I found that the key to deal with such a situation is to solve the issues one at a time. By doing so, you teach your kids about patience, waiting for their turn and they can see that you are there for them. Thus confidence is established because they know they will get your attention.
4. Remind them that you love them:
Showering your children with love and affection is an enjoyable remedy for both child and parent. Not only the child feels content, but she will also have a sense of security that builds confidence and trust.
“It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.”