Sometimes without even realizing it, your responses may be doing the exact opposite which lowers your children’s self-esteem.
When your children are struggling with a task, it may seem easy to you, however, it is not necessarily easy to them. When you say, “That is easy, you can do it.” You are trying to motivate and encourage them, yet it causes your children to think, “Something must be wrong with me because it’s not easy to me, therefore, I must be dumb.” This causes your children to feel discouraged and want to give up. It decreases their self-esteem.
Instead tell them, “This can be tough or this is difficult.” Then if your children complete the task, they tell themselves, “I did something hard.” If they cannot figure it out, at least they know it was tough to begin with. This approach helps children stay encouraged and increases their feelings of self-worth.
Your children want to do tasks on their own. This gives them a great sense of accomplishment and helps them feel good about themselves. You may feel one way to show your love is doing things for your children. This robs them of the opportunity to learn life skills and the satisfaction of feeling independent. It sends your children the hidden message, “You are not capable.”
Instead of doing too much for your children, break the task into smaller more kid-friendly tasks. This gives your children the chance to feel the personal satisfaction of completing it on their own. Their self-esteem will soar.