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Five tips to boost your child’s self-esteem

As adults most of us know that it’s completely natural to have times when you don’t feel as good about yourself as you should. We can usually find ways to combat these emotions, but what can you do when it’s your child having a tough time?

If you’re a parent or foster carer looking after a young person with low self-esteem, try these tips to help boost their confidence. Remember – we all have individual needs and the only way to find things that will work is through directly talking to the young person about what would make them feel good.

1. Start a feel-good box

Keep a box full of objects and notes that remind your child of times when they felt good about themselves. This can be photographs of fun days out, notes or stickers from teachers praising their work, or keepsakes like tickets and small toys. Reminiscing about happier times will remind your child of these positive experiences and will boost their self-esteem.

2. Keep track of compliments

Encourage your child to keep a note of any compliments they receive in a book. When they’re feeling down or anxious, they can flick through this and be reminded of all the positive things about themselves that friends, relatives and teachers have said in the past.

3. Exercise away the stress

Exercising is scientifically proven to increase happiness levels no matter how old you are. On days that your child is feeling down, take them to a local park for some fresh air and some blood-pumping activity, where they can run around and have fun. This has the added benefit of helping them to stay fit and in control of their health.

4. Do something they’re good at

If your child has a particular talent, like playing an instrument or taking part in sport, persuade them to do this when they’re struggling with low self-esteem. It works as a reminder of what they’re good at and how their skills contribute to make other people proud or happy. Even if it’s playing their favourite board game and letting them win, it can make a difference.

5. Let them set and achieve a task

Focusing on something that needs to be completed will take your child’s mind of whatever problem is affecting their confidence. This works as a self-esteem boost by empowering them to make a decision and following through. The sense of achievement will boost their self-worth and give them faith in their abilities.

Growing up is a turbulent time for everyone, but if your lacking stability or facing problems at home then it can be especially tricky. Children in care often struggle with lower levels of self-confidence than their peers. That’s why we’re looking for individuals who could be great foster carers – are you up for the job?

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