Self Esteem

Self-esteem is the value that a child places on themselves, their abilities and their worth as a person. It is a critical factor in a child’s emotional well-being and success in life. Building a child’s self-esteem can help improve their overall happiness, resilience and ability to cope with challenges.

There are several ways in which parents and carers can help build a child’s self-esteem:

  1. Encourage their strengths and interests: Help the child identify their strengths and passions, and encourage them to pursue them. Acknowledge and celebrate their achievements, no matter how small.
  2. Emphasize the value of effort over outcome: Children should be taught that it is the effort they put into something that counts, not the outcome. This can help children develop a growth mindset and focus on their progress, rather than their setbacks.
  3. Foster a positive self-image: Children need to feel good about themselves and their physical appearance. Encourage healthy habits, such as exercise and good nutrition, and avoid negative comments about appearance.
  4. Provide opportunities for success: Children need to experience success to build their self-esteem. Find activities that challenge their abilities, but also give them a sense of accomplishment.
  5. Foster a positive attitude towards mistakes: Children need to know that mistakes are a normal part of learning. Emphasize the importance of learning from mistakes and not giving up.
  6. Show appreciation and respect: Children need to feel appreciated and valued by their carers. Show genuine interest in their lives and treat them with respect.
  7. Teach positive self-talk: Children need to learn how to talk to themselves in a positive and supportive way. Encourage them to focus on their strengths and to avoid negative self-talk.

Building a child’s self-esteem can have a positive impact on their emotional well-being, self-worth, and happiness. By following these steps, parents and carers can help children develop a positive self-image and the resilience to cope with life’s challenges.


  1. Bailey, R. A. (2010). Promoting positive self-esteem in children and youth. New York: Springer.
  2. Brummel-Smith, K. (2009). Building self-esteem in children and teens. Westport, Conn: Praeger.