When compliments do more harm than good

We all think our children are the cutest, prettiest and smartest. We may think so, in fact we should. We want to cheer them on and make them feel proud about themselves. Of course we want them to have a secure self-esteem, show good progress and even excel in what they do.

There is however a few things we need to try to avoid when we praise our children:

We need to be sincere. Your body language and tone of voice will give your insincerity away and your child will feel disappointed.

Children should earn the praise. They know when their performance doesn’t earn your appraisal. You might consider using phrases such as “you made an interesting picture,” or “I like your angle on this project.”

Do not always focus on the outcome, but rather the process. Does he always have to score a tri to earn your approval? Does she háve to draw a pretty picture? Always focussing on the outcome might send a message that they are only good enough when they perform and live up to certain expectations. What about “I am proud of you, I could see you played your heart out on the field,” or “Wow, look at you enjoying painting that picture.” Thís will build their self-esteem and motivate them to carry on.

Never compare a child with others. Each child has their own strengths. Children should not have to compete with other children to win approval.

Every child is a unique being. Let them use their creativity and do their best without feeling the need to impress.

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