In the last article we asked the question, does your child have yo-yo self-esteem? Recall that Yo-yo self-esteem occurs when children’s self-esteem rises and falls with the ups and downs of their lives (i.e. how they did in school, played in their soccer game, etc.).
We talked about how important it is for children to base their self-esteem on who they are and not on what is happening outside of them so that their self-esteem remains intact no matter what is going on in their lives.
Today we’ll learn three additional tips for supporting your kids in developing solid self-esteem that doesn’t rise and fall with the ups and downs of life:
The fourth tip is to encourage your kids to identify and honour their own uniqueness. We are all unique in our own special way. Have your kids brainstorm what they love about themselves – from their values to their character, to their gifts and talents. Have them make an “I love me!” poster which illustrates what they love about themselves. When kids focus on what they love about themselves, their self-esteem will soar.
Fifth, talk with them about the power of positive self-talk. What they say to themselves is more important than what anyone else says to them. When kids learn to talk to themselves with love, compassion, and support, their self-esteem will soar.
Finally, teach your children how to handle the “downs” in life. Teach them how to manage mistakes and failures so that they don’t define themselves by these
events. Teach them how to manage fear so that fear doesn’t keep them from their dreams. Teach them how to manage change so they feel powerful in their lives and see themselves as capable and worthy.
Learning to handle the “downs” in life as events, not only enhances self-esteem but also leads to powerful self-confidence as kids learn that they can handle anything that comes their way.
As we mentioned in the last article no matter how much we love our kids or how much time we spend with them, we can’t give them self-esteem, but what we can do is help them develop it in themselves. Start this week by sharing the six tips from these two articles.
Does your child’s self-esteem rise and fall with the grades she makes?
Do your child’s self-esteem rise and fall depend on who played with him at school that day?
Does your child’s self-esteem crumble if he makes a mistake?
If so, then your child is suffering from yo-yo self-esteem — self-esteem that rises and falls with the ups and downs of life.
How kids feel about themselves often depends on what is going on in their life – what is going on outside of them.
However, powerful self-esteem isn’t based on what is going on outside of you (what is happening in your life). Powerful self-esteem is based on what is going on inside of you — who you are and how you think about yourself.
When kids base their self-esteem on “who they are” then their self-esteem can remain intact no matter what is going on in their lives.
So if your children have yo-yo self-esteem, how do you help them shift from external focus to internal focus?
Here are the first three of six tips for helping your kids develop solid self-esteem that doesn’t rise and fall with the ups and downs of life:
First talk with them about what self-esteem is. Teach them that self-esteem is based on who they are, not what they do.
Second, teach them how to separate the results of an event from who they are. For example, if they fail a test, that is just an event – something that happened. Just because they failed a test, doesn’t mean they are a failure. It just means they didn’t learn the material well enough to get the right answers on the majority of the questions – that’s it. Let your kids know that it’s OK to feel down; however, there is a difference between feeling down about a bad grade and feeling down on yourself because of a bad grade. Help your children understand this distinction and their self-esteem will flourish.
Third, teach them about the dangers of comparison. When kids compare themselves to others – seeing themselves as “better than” or “less than” another, they are looking externally to determine how to feel about themselves. This sets them up for yo-yo self-esteem because they will feel good about themselves whenever they see themselves as “better than” another and they will feel bad about themselves every time they see themselves as “less than” another. This not only devastates self-esteem, but also creates jealousy, resentment, and a belief system of “not good enough”.
Unfortunately, self-esteem isn’t something you can give your kids; however, it is something you can teach them to develop in themselves. Start today by sharing these first three tips with them. In the next article, we will cover the last three tips.
Trauma almost always invariably involves not being seen, not being mirrored and not being taken into account. In the book “The Body Keeps Score”Bessel A. van der Kolkata, M.D. describes “Mindfulness “ is the ability to hover calmly and objectively over our thoughts, feelings and emotions. Traumatic experiences happen every day with children. They might have witnessed a car accident or a robbery while at the shopping store with you. Maybe your child saw a friend being bullied at school or a fight in the schoolyard. Children can be feeling big emotions and may need assistance in learning how to manage them.
Feelings and Emotions Begin Deep Inside The Brain.
There feelings and emotions can affect every part of their bodies. Let’s say they are laying in the grass and they see a really large spider right away the part of the brain called thalamus kicks in and directs the information from your eyes to your brain. Then another part of their brain called the hippocampus kicks in and makes the decision this is scary. Then their prefrontal cortex releases chemicals to make the child react to the threat. And the big finally their part of the brain called the hypothalamus is responsible for activating the alarm response. The alarm response are messages sent to their bodies to release stress hormones. Now they run away from the spider. Emotions can have your child reacting very quickly with a tenth of a second. Your body can respond faster than your thoughts. Signs of distress in children are a tense neck, jaw, shoulders, arms, hands, or chest, throat and tummy aches, heart rate increases, muscles can be sore. So I want to recommend teaching your children from a young age grounding techniques. Because when children age Stress and Anxiety are often the biggest obstacles when it comes to recovery as Adults.
4×4 Breathing Technique
You could start by teaching them the 4×4 method of breathing. To begin have them empty their lungs of air. Breathe in quietly through the nose 4 seconds. Hold the breath for a count of 7 seconds. Then exhale through the mouth making a “woosh” sound, for 8 seconds. Repeat the cycle up to four times. By teaching your children this you are helping them release neurotransmitters in their brain, many that trigger feel-good chemicals resulting in relaxation, happiness and pain reduction. “Enjoy the special time with your child”.
WISDOM COACH Kerrie
Copyright 2020 Kerrie Meunier, LittleDarlingsEmotionalHealing.com. All rights reserved.
“THE PRIMARY CAUSE OF UNHAPPINESS IS NEVER THE SITUATION BUT YOUR THOUGHTS ABOUT IT”.– ECKART TOLLE
The Primary Cause of Unhappiness is Never The Situation But Your Thoughts About It.- ECKHART TOLE
“All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel mother”- Abraham Lincoln
With Mother’s Day just around the corner, Little Darling was getting very excited because she had saved up enough money to give her Mom a big surprise. Just a few days past she was at the hardware store with both her parents and Little Darling spotted the giant salt and pepper shakers.
Little Darling’s mother had been in such good spirits all week because her dad had bought her all new appliances for her kitchen. They were one of the latest colors, which were mustard yellow, avocado green, and barn red. Little Darling’s Mom picked mustard yellow. Her mom even got her first spanking new dishwasher. It was portable and even had a butcher block cutting board top. Little Darling knew her Mom had wanted a dishwasher for a very long time. It was so nice to see her Mom when she was happy.
As days went by Little Darling was having a hard time keeping her secret quiet. It took a lot of inner strength, but she did not tell her older sister. Little Darling finally thought she had found the perfect gift to make her mother smile on her special day. She hoped so much her mom would love her present even better than her older sister’s gift.
That same day her neighbor friend Barbara knocked on the door and was picking her up, so they could walk to the hardware store together. They both would pick out a gift for their mothers. They headed out on the four-block trek. Once they arrived at the store, it took Little Darling quite some time to decide on the perfect color for her mom. Her choices were mustard yellow, avocado green, or barn red. Finally, she picked the avocado green because the nice lady at the store said they would look lovely on the mustard yellow stove-top. The Shakers were large and had handles on them. Little Darling thought her mom would love them for cooking. The lady asked them if the items they picked out were gifts and they told her yes. She said since they are Mother’s day gifts she would wrap them extra special for them. Once the presents were wrapped the young girls put their gifts in there carry bags they had brought to hide there presents from their families The two girls had planned everything. The two girls thanked the nice lady and set out on their journey home.
Barbara and Little Darling were about two blocks from home when down Little Darling fell. She had tripped on the uneven sidewalk and skinned her knee in the fall. Little Darling was absolutely devasted, as her little pal and her opened up the package to access the damage. They discovered one shaker was cracked and broken. Heart Broken the little girls decided to go back to the store and tell the kind lady what had happened. Once back at the hardware store the lady said she did not have any more green shakers left but she had a red one that the match came in broken. when it was shipped. She told little Darling she could have it. The lady said Little Darling’s mom would like the set and it would look lovely in her kitchen. Little Darling was so grateful for the ladies’ help, she even special wrapped them once again. The girls thanked her once again and headed home.
Mother’s Day morning finally arrived and Little Darling was over the moon with excitement. She could not wait to see how surprised her mom would be when she opened the special gift. Little Darling’s mom was surprised, she asked Little Darling why they were different colors and why they did not match. Little Darling told her story with her family all around her. Her mother’s response has haunted the child within for many years. “Oh, Little Darling you are such a Klutz”. She can still hear her father and older sisters snickers.
We have all experienced shame in our lives, but not all have experienced debilitating shame. They are two different things. It is an isolating experience like this example that makes a person feel completely alone, rejected, and abandoned. Children depend on their parents for life support. As time goes on debilitating shame is a state of self-hate and self-devaluation that is comparable to little else. When Toxic Shame occurs all one’s vulnerabilities become exposed and magnified. Little children come to believe others in their world view them with disdain and disgust. All children just want to be accepted. It is very easy to make children feel like they are mistakes and failures and to feel isolated and is especially true if you have an emotionally sensitive child.
Just one anxious thought can spread throughout your mind and create a mountain out of a molehill. Your subconscious mind can control your thoughts and situations that you could manage in the past now make you worry!
A very special lady named Janice at the Misericordia Hospital in Edmonton Alberta told me about this special technique and, I want to share it with the world. All around us are people who suffer from panic attacks! We live in such a technical, stressful world and it affects us all every day. This simple but powerful technique will surprise you. It will provide you immediate relief and bring you back to a functional state. My research tells me it is called “The Dive Reflex Technique”. It is a method to calm down quickly and it really works because I have given it a go a few times now!. What it does is reset your nervous system when it is in an extremely heightened state of emotional arousal.
Fill a bowl with icy cold water
Bend and lean over it
Hold your breath
Put your face in the icy water for 30 seconds
Make sure to cover the area underneath your eyes and above your cheekbones. (This is the most sensitive part of your face).
This technique should calm you down immediately and it is very effective.
Another way to do this is to use an icy gel mask around the eye area, hold your breath, and bend over for 30 seconds.
There is a warning for people with heart problems. They should not do this technique because by activating the dive reflex it slows the heart rate.
Crazy as it all sounds, it does really work! It would be a good idea to educate your partner or someone close to you, so they also understand what to do if you are having an attack. It will benefit them to see it reduce your intense emotions and they will witness seeing your heart rate come down quickly.
Humans like other mammals have a Diving Response(Also known as the Mammalian Dive Response Reflex consisting of a set of reflexes that are activated when our face is cooled. Such has when our face hits the water in a dive or when we hold our breath. It is a clever way our body is able to manage and tolerate a lower level of oxygen.