Give your child helpful praise.

Generic praises can cause your child to doubt the authenticity of your words, lead to denial in them, force them to focus on the things they can’t do instead of the things they can do, etc. Your child will feel much more confident in their abilities if they can learn to praise themselves.


  1. *Describe what you see/feel with appreciation.*
    Tailor your praise to your child by clearly describing what it is that you are proud of.

  2. *Sum up their praiseworthy behavior in a word or two.*
    Some examples of praiseworthy behaviors are perseverance, punctuality, taking initiative, self-control, resourcefulness, courage, etc.

  3. *Encourage your children to praise themselves.*
    Help your children feel good about themselves by steering them toward self-praise. For example, if your child comes up to you with a drawing they’ve just completed, follow the first and second steps above.
    Then ask them, “How did you do this?” Their answer will likely be one of self-praise, e.g., “I’m an artist!”


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