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How to help your kids learn the essential skill of self-respect

How we treat ourselves will determine how we feel about ourselves. This will directly impact how we treat others and how we will allow others to treat us. Learning to have self-respect will, therefore, ensure that we will respect others, honour boundaries, behave with integrity and honesty and build strong and healthy relationships.

Cindy Glass, Owner and co-Founder of Step Up Education Centres offers the following helpful tips to help your children learn the essential skill of self-respect:

The most effective way to teach self-respect is to model it
Our children do what we do, not always what we say. Start by making sure that YOU respect yourself first.  It is a win-win as one of the benefits of self-respect is happiness and fulfillment- and who would not want that?

Teach your children to take responsibility for their behaviours and choices
Accountability is essential to developing self-respect. Mistakes and failures are inevitable. Individuals with high levels of self-respect will own their mistakes and seek to find positive solutions. They will not blame others for their own choices.

Teach your children to set healthy personal boundaries
It’s okay to say no without feeling shameful or guilty. We teach others how to treat us. Setting boundaries ensures that we create and maintain self-respect.

Teach your children that they can and should walk away from abusive or unhealthy friendships
Positive friendships share common values and respect each other’s personal space. Allowing or justifying negative behaviours from others simply teaches them to continue in these behaviours. ‘I respect myself enough to not allow others to treat me in a disrespectful manner. It is because I respect myself that I ensure that I, too, respect others.’

Teach your children to be kind – towards themselves first and, in turn, toward others
Be gentle with yourself, little one, for we are all learning and growing and finding our way through life.

“Self-respect can only be taught effectively if it is modelled effectively. Parents, you are your children’s first and longest-lasting teachers. Respect yourself enough to teach your children to do the same. It won’t always be easy, but it will be worthwhile,” Cindy concludes.  

Photo by Baylee Gramling on Unsplash

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