“Five Ways to Build Your Teen’s Self Esteem”
by Hannah Keeley
If you have a teenager then you probably already know that at the center of his universe is….well, him! Most teens spend so much time analyzing their image that they become overly critical. Also, the media doesn’t help us moms out too much by delivering messages that being extremely good-looking and totally popular is what the teen years are all about. Unfortunately, a teenager can often suffer from low self-confidence during these precious years. But never fear—there’s always something we can do to help out.
Check out these 5 tips that will make a difference…
1. Set an example. If we go around bemoaning how fat we are or how ugly our hair looks, we are telling our teenagers that image is all that matters. When it comes to kids, more is “caught” then “taught.” Speak with confidence about yourself. Set the example of a good self-image. Look in the mirror and shout out, “Hello, Hot Stuff!” Whatever it takes, you need to model a healthy relationship with the person who is staring back at you in the mirror.
2. Play up the positive. Sure, there’s stuff that is wrong with you, but there is a lot more that is RIGHT with you. Focus on that! We all have different strengths so start playing them up. And while you’re at it, help your teen find his strengths and make the most of them.
3. Eliminate stresses where you can. Whether we like it or not, appearance matters when it comes to teens. As a matter of fact, according to a recent study, appearance was the number one factor determining a teen’s self-confidence. Since appearance does matter so greatly to teens, ignoring it is never helpful. Instead, if there are issues you can take off the table, do it! If your teen suffers from a serious case of acne then get it treated. If he needs braces then perhaps go for invisible ones (that’s what I did with Kelsey and Katie…and guess what, it costs about the same as metal ones!).
4. Communicate. I’m not talking about the “uh huh” kind of parent/teen communication that goes on these days. I’m talking real communication. This can only occur when you have undivided attention. Parents are busy these days and I’m sure there are a thousand things going on in your head, but when you are talking with your teen forget all about that other stuff. Focus! Be there in the moment so that when you two talk, you really, really talk.
5. Go with your gut. I’m a firm believer that all of us moms have a sixth sense when it comes to our kids. Go with that instinct of yours. If there are issues that you feel your teen may be struggling with, don’t ignore them. And remember, there is no right way to parent a teen, only the way that works best for you and your child. Trust your gut and follow it.
Hannah Keeley was once in overwhelmed mom living in a cluttered house, deep in debt, out of shape, and barely hanging on. But one day, after finding herself sobbing uncontrollably into a pile of clean laundry, she realized God has bigger and better plans for her (just like He does for each one of His children). Beginning that day, she began making changes in her life that took her from overwhelmed to overjoyed. Today, she’s helping moms do the same. Hannah, her husband, Blair, and their seven children live in Richmond, Virginia, and are having the time of their lives!
Check out Hannah’s Website Here!