What constitutes a healthy self-esteem? 

It is feeling level and well about oneself in a way that is realistic and encompasses positive responses. It is reflective to the whole self and all of the facets of self. Inclusive of roles and life experiences. An adaptive self-esteem can balance interpretation of stimuli and idealism and still feel sustained within their own self. Self-Esteem is constantly changing and evolving and is a state that can be nurtured and supported to enhance a more quality approach and experience in life. An adaptive self-esteem means something different to each individual and evolves and adapts through stages of the health-illness continuum.

Creative Ways to Support the Self-Esteem of Children and Youth

In reflection, the self-esteem of a child can be supported significantly by significant others. Positive supports and validations daily to stay positive with personal goals and experiences give children and youth a better sense of themselves so they can adapt to experiences in life. 

Environment and family dynamics affect the self esteem of children and youth. Every family has a unique situation and creating open communication and being present to support them physically and emotionally is imperative. As children and youth evolve it is very important to have them develop and role play or speak their concepts and ideas on a regular basis. This validates their individuality to support their ideas openly. Bringing perspective to their actions and ideas is a brilliant way to get them to look at life differently or change an approach with something. Ask them what they would do. Think of their reasoning and assist them with life skills as much as possible.

Children and youth need rules and respect to develop a sense of security and moral ethical self. Having them take on responsibility and tasks is a great way to have them develop a sense of autonomy. Striving for role identification and the assimilation of role conceptualization.

Role identification is imperative in children and youth positive role models and discussion is beneficial to support their conceptualization of role identity. Exposure to different dynamics in family and friends helps them realize expectations and norms that are a part of society.

Encouraging time alone or away from technology such as cellphones and social media is a positive exercise in individuality, and encouraging performance in other activities such as sports or music or arts.

Autonomy is key for letting youth develop a sense of responsibility and self. Encouraging responsibility and independence where appropriate and providing positive support is always the best intervention.

Providing supportive options and perspectives is a great way to open discussions on problem solving and life skills. The awareness of approach with youth is always key.