Low self-esteem issues are common among teenagers, especially teenage girls. Besides, teens, even adults suffer from low self-esteem. If you notice that your teen might have a low self-esteem, it’s important to work on it immediately so that it doesn’t worsen as an adult. Teens usually go through phases as well and some experience feeling empty. By this we mean they feel that there is a gap or something missing in life. But they can’t establish what it is exactly, but nevertheless, this is something worth looking more deeply into.
Self-esteem plays a major part in both a child’s and adult life and it is something which we all require. Though it may be difficult to bring your teen’s self-esteem back up, you as the parent should not give up. Your teen will appreciate your support later in life and it will even help them with building up their self-esteem.
“Nothing ruins self-esteem like surrounding yourself with people who abuse or neglect you,” –Karen R. Koenig, MEd, LCSW
Signs of Low Self-Esteem in Teens
- They are easily influenced.
- They feel unloved or unwanted.
- They have a poor perception of themselves.
- They are afraid of failure and they avoid trying new things.
- They feel that they have no talents and are not good at anything.
The Benefits of a High Self-Esteem
Let’s look at the benefits of how having a high self-esteem can help your teen:
- The ability to take on new challenges.
- The ability to handle both positive and negative situations and emotions.
- Helps others.
- Takes pride in their accomplishments and successes.
How to Help Your Teen with Building Their Self-Esteem
There are many different strategies that can help your teen with building their self-esteem. Here are some options:
There’s nothing to be ashamed of when seeking the help of a therapist for your teen. They will talk to them and establish the root cause of the problem and also help them with overcoming it. They will also help them with feeling more confident and how to deal with negative emotions. “Therapy gives you permission to allow you to feel the pain and know that it’s valid,” says Carmen Gehrke, LMHC.
Try and Help Your Teen with Building a Positive Self Image
A lot of teens have issues with their appearance or body. Explain to your teen that everyone has their imperfections. You should also tell them not to compare themselves with others. Teens often compare themselves with those in the magazine, on the television and the media. They need to start building a positive perception of their appearance and they also need to love themselves with their perfection and imperfections.
Praise Your Teen
Praise your teen for all their accomplishments and try to encourage them. This will show them that they have your full support and it will make them feel good about themselves.
Don’t Criticize or Blame Your Teen
Blaming and criticizing your teen will only make things worse. This will bring their self-esteem down. So, avoid it.
Try and Teach Them to Be More Positive
Positivity is the key to building a high self-esteem. Explain to your teen that failures happen in life and that it shouldn’t let them feel like a failure. You should also help with dealing with negative feelings and teach them to see the positive side of things always. “Negative thoughts are just a part of life, but they don’t have to consume you. Instead of trying to ignore those thoughts altogether, try countering them with positive statements.” Licensed clinical psychologist John Mayer, Ph.D. said.
Encourage Your Child to Take up A Hobby or Any Activity
A therapist can recommend some great therapeutic activities. But you as the parent will know what your child likes and dislikes. You will also know what they enjoy doing. So, encourage your child to participate in these activities and try out new ones as well. You should also praise them for their efforts. This will help them with building their self-esteem.
Encourage them to Form New Friendships and Stay Connected with Their Friends
Encourage your teen to spend time with their friends and stay clear of negative influences. Surrounding oneself with positive people can help one with feeling positive about themselves.