Teaching kids about self-love is essential to building a foundation for them to grow into healthy, happy adults—and as a bonus, it's not difficult to do! We also encourage and demonstrate love and compassion toward others by cultivating self-love. So if you want to instill qualities that foster empathy while establishing values of respect and acceptance, taking these tips will make it easier for your children to learn self-love.
Ask How They Are and Make Them Feel Important
Ask your kid: "How do you feel?" It doesn't matter if they are an infant or a teenager. They might laugh, cry or say something like, "I'm good," but you'll have their attention. Then say, "Tell me why you feel that way." By doing that, you are validating their feelings and letting them know it is okay and normal to have certain emotions. This can be done almost daily, not only at dinner or bedtime. Asking them creates a bond and trust between you and your child.
Praise Your Child the Right Way
There are ways to compliment and praise children for their efforts more than their achievements. Emphasizing praising their actions reassures them that it's better to do their best. Moreover, positive reinforcement works. Parents always use the reward and punishment system; however, they should balance it. The wrong way of rewarding or praising can tell the child they will do well because they are rewarded, not because it's the right thing to do.
Self-love is not just caring for mental health but for overall well-being. You can teach your children that caring for their bodies is another form of loving themselves. Discuss with them that engaging in physical activities such as playing sports, learning to ride bikes, and balancing bikes can benefit their lives.
Never Speak Negatively of themselves and Others
Children are fast learners; their minds are like sponges. That is why imparting them to never speak negatively of themselves is another way of self-love. Giving them balanced knowledge about life and simple words can encourage them to live positively; moreover, parents teach kids not to condone bullying and to tell "bad" and discouraging words to others such as friends, family, classmates, and even strangers.
Be a Good Role Model to your ChildrenKids are great imitators. They get and grasp how their family and environment work. Being a role model of self-love to your kids significantly shapes their personality and perspective in life. Show them simple acts of kindness towards people, like helping family members with chores, being friendly to neighbors and classmates, and practicing caring for the environment.
Kids are impressionable, and a significant part of being parents is to teach them how to love and be kind to themselves. But how exactly do you teach children to love themselves? Affirmations are a great way!
Every morning, it is best to practice daily affirmations with your child, like "I am brave," "I am loved," "I am important," "I learn from my mistakes," or even "I will do my best today." These positive affirmations about themselves can boost confidence and character.
Self Love is Not Selfish
Explaining to a child about selflessness is complicated, but in a more literal and straightforward way, you can expound the meaning of self-love. Instilling empathy and kindness is the best example of understanding a friend, a family member, or a classmate.
If you want to help your child learn self-love and promote a sense of identity, you must be there. Use the tips above to help your kids learn about their worth, potential, and themselves. And remember that self-love isn't all about big talking. The most important thing you can do for a child is to love them for who they are.