I heard somehwere that self esteem only happens when you “impress YOURSELF” with your own courage, integrity, and capability.
My youngest is turning 4 soon and I recently realized that I haven’t been giving him very many opportunities to do things himself and gain a sense of pride/accomplishment/self esteem. (His personality enjoys being catered-to and my personality enjoys not waiting 800 minutes for the third child to figure out how to get a shirt right side out. Anyway.)
So when he asked for juice this morning, I told him he could get the carton of orange juice and cup and I would pour the juice. He complied after some whining, and when I commented, “See!? You COULD do it!” he sighed and dramatically announced,”It sure wasn’t easy.” (I somehow held back from laughing )
And I saw him smile a little, legitimately proud of himself for his tiny victory.
Of course getting a cup and juice seems not all that difficult to a 30-something mom (unless it is the morning of January 1st. Cough, cough.)… But HE impressed HIMSELF, and he will take that feeling of capability with him throughout life.
How many times do YOU miss opportunities to give yourself a little pat on the back, admit “it sure wasn’t easy,” and pridefully smile? Maybe you dismiss what you do because you compare yourself to others or have a habit of dodging positive interpretations of yourself??
Sometimes, due to depression, anxiety, physical limitation, or other circumstance, a task is difficult or outside your comfort zone. Downplaying or dismissing your own tiny victory is a psychologically harmful habit. If you accomplish something, no matter how seemingly small- (Just getting out of bed? not yelling at your kid when he pours cheerios in the toilet? Getting on the treadmill for five minutes? Catching yourself mid-argument and trying empathy?)- take the time to acknowledge that you impressed yourself!
Just something to think about!
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