Class members: How someone perceives themselves, your confidence level, your self worth.
Why is it important?
Class member: You don’t want them to be influenced by negative things. I feel like if they are just trying to impress their friends and fit in with the group.
Class member: If they don’t have confidence it’s hard for them to make decisions that are hard.
“It’s better to choose the harder right than the easier wrong.” President Monson
Class member: I think if they have the confidence they bounce back easier.
In your Parenting do you think about where your children are in their self esteem? How do you determine where they are with their self esteem?
Class member: I look at how they are treating each other. Not wanting to be alone even at school.
You feel like if their self esteem is low they are more inclined to be ornery with other people.
Class member: I notice their self talk. My youngest is quick to be hard on themselves.
It’s been interesting to think about the changes in how we see this word.
In my home when I was growing up “self-esteem” was not talked about. You just obeyed or you paid the consequences. When you head into the 60’s with the free thinkers. This is when you didn’t like the government and pursued freedom. Then we started about this thing with self esteem and they need to feel of value and have purpose. It swung from being an “arbitrary rule” to “we ruin our children if we give them rules”. You never control them or put them into boxes. You let them do what they want as they learn who they are.
Then we had a product of horrible awful children. Now we have swung into this era of “asking and questioning our children”. We ask a lot of questions, but it should never take the place of discipline. Now we say to a 5 year old that is supposed to go to bed, “Would you like to go get your jammies on?” We say “Ok in 15 minutes.” You will find a lot of parents that will say, “When you are tired you can go get your jammies on.” We have allowed children to take on the role of parent.
The United States has 50% more children on drugs for ADHD than anywhere else in the world. In other countries the teacher can discipline the child. In our society we allow our children to be rule.
We have a problem in intentional parenting. Part of helping our children feel self worth is a parent that is willing to parent. In the home the parent needs to be in charge. It creates in them this feeling of insecurity if there are no rules or boundaries. At school children were taught basic manners. That was the norm. In today’s society children have a sense of entitlement and disrespect. They disrespect adults and now they are disrespecting each other. Those children have no feelings of self worth.
Class member: I teach the 8-9 yr olds in church. I have one child that is very hard. I have a Primary Presidency Member that asks “questions”. My thing is if you don’t want to participate it’s going to be boring, but you can participate and have fun. The Presidency Member derails me when I am trying to parent.
If I were you…you might ponder on this…I would say Sister “Jones” I am having a bit of a challenge in my class and I’d like to sit down and talk to you about it. Where I could come over and chat about it? This is a one on one. I would take a loaf of bread to her house. I would say I appreciate this presidency, but I want to tell you what I’m trying to do. Help her see the picture. Maybe you have some good ideas about how I should handle this. You never go in pointing fingers. You have to open your mouth, but do it in a non-confronting way.
Some parents think everything is a choice. If you don’t want to go to class you don’t have to. If you don’t want to earn your Eagle you don’t have to. Heavenly Father says if you want to get back to the Celestial Kingdom you have to do this.
Class member: My sister is a red Secretary she takes them to the parent and says, “He’s misbehaving and when he’s ready to sit in a chair he can come back.”
We don’t want to offend the child or the parent. We have to feel comfortable in taking back our role as a parent.
Class member (continue): I tried to implement my sister’s honest. The Mom is a good friend of mine and I’m struggling with one child. I said it’s a bit of trial. I said I invite you to come sneak in the back and watch what is happening. It wasn’t me telling her I just invited her to come and see what was going on.
I think that’s fabulous, but that’s where you listen to the Spirit. You will have some parents that will be offended if you try to control their children.
Class member: Because she doesn’t have boundaries she doesn’t have self esteem.
Self esteem is created by having boundaries and feeling good about you being able to live within the boundaries.
4 Basics Parts of Self Esteem:
1. A sense of identification. This means they know they are a child of God. They know they have spiritual gifts. In their own personality they are worthwhile. It’s who I am and what I am and what I have to offer. It involves the labels they give themselves. It’s their belief system. It’s their talents, their strengths, their weaknesses. They are identified and they feel good about it.
2. A sense of belonging. This makes them feel like they are wanted and loved and accepted for who they are and people enjoy having them there.
3. A sense of worthiness. This is being accepted and approved of by family and others.
4. A sense of control. They need to know that if they make mistakes they can make changes. This gives them a feeling that they can face problems and solve them. This is when they have the power within them to make changes.
The society teaches our children there is a sense of disrespect and entitlement. Most kids feel like that can be anything, but ‘I just don’t want to’. They don’t connect the dots between having a desire and how to get there. This is the false self esteem of the world.
We have to meet these 4 things. I’m going to give you some tools to use. You will see how the tool will get you to the goal.
How many of you feel like you have a really good self esteem? That you like who you are, that you know who you are, and that you can use your talents.
Write down 3 things you are great at. If I asked you to write a list of things you are bad at you could have done it quickly.
Most children do not rise above the self esteem of their mother. I think a great deal of a child’s self esteem after age 5 it depends a lot on their father. I think in the beginning nurturing years it is more about the mother. It becomes critical for them to feel value if their Dad is involved and attends their activities.
Reader’s Digest (Calvin Taylor)---There is 120 things that can be tested on and IQ test. Everyone would score over 90% and be categorized as a genius in at least 1 area. In 2 areas they would be average. In 2 areas they would be a moron.
President Packer says…if you focus on the negative that becomes the focus.
Write down the area you are ‘genius’ in.
There are 6 areas you can be tested in. (Page 8 in the syllabus)
- Creativity—problem solve, doesn’t think in a box
- Planning & Organizing—logistics, order in life
- Communication—to speak, express yourself, and listening
- Forecasting—the ability to see consequences of behavior now
- Decision making—some make quick, good decisions
HOMEWORK: Be aware of what you wrote down this week. Think about it. Think about when you are using it. Think about how you can magnify it.
What happens when you find your area of genius we demean that because we think everyone has that. You assume you are not special because of it. The thing is not to compare. It’s to magnify and use what you do well.
Example: If your gift is communication, think about how you deal with people. Try to leave every conversation with others leaving them feeling better than when they came back in.
Elder Bednar “If Ye Had Known Me”
Help me believe that you would do it for my son. I believe you are divine and could do it for someone else’s son, but help me believe you could do it for my son.
You came to earth with gifts. Someone who feels not good enough has a hard time giving to their children the confidence to be who they are. You can’t use the gifts if you can’t find them.
I think one of the gifts I was given was to be a teacher. I know by myself I can’t do this. I think I’m no different than you. It’s my gift and responsibility to use it in the service of the Lord and if I will He makes up the difference. It’s to look at your gifts and say I’m thankful for it and how can I help others by it. It’s not to be better than somebody. It’s having a gift to serve someone. That’s where self esteem comes in.
HOMEWORK: Read President Benson’s talk on Pride. “Beware of Pride” Make a running list of the attributes of pride. All of those attributes are characteristics of low self esteem.
I think it needs to be read at least twice a year. It destroyed the Nephites. Pride is a form of worshipping the natural man. When you look at the attributes of pride they are symptoms of low self esteem.
We need to love God and fear his judgements more than the judgements of man.
The proud make every man their adversary by pitting their intellects, opinions, works, wealth, talents, or any other worldly measuring device against others. In the words of C. S. Lewis: “Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man. … It is the comparison that makes you proud: the pleasure of being above the rest. Once the element of competition has gone, pride has gone.” (Mere Christianity, New York: Macmillan, 1952, pp. 109–10.) Ezra Taft Benson’s talk on Pride. “Beware of Pride”
We have created the contention making them feel better than someone else. The child is valued the same in their differences.
The proud stand more in fear of men’s judgment than of God’s judgment. (See D&C 3:6–7; D&C 30:1–2; D&C 60:2.) “What will men think of me?” weighs heavier than “What will God think of me?” Ezra Taft Benson’s talk on Pride. “Beware of Pride”
We create this environment where they respect our authority. They seek to overcome these things if they are out of pride.
What can you do to create this feeling of self worth in your children….
1. Have family dinner together regularly.
At which time there are no electronics. Mom’s & Dad’s do not bring your cell phones to the table. If you are addicted to your phone and every time it beeps you have to check it turn the power off. No child can bring electronics to the table. No TV. Nothing that distracts the family from the people at the table. This will build the feeling of belonging. Mom & Dad you need to be the parents at the table. As you sit around the table there is no bashing of one another. It’s a safe place. You don’t want the child to say it’s was a rotten day and I got bullied. Dinner needs to be a safe place. That is controlled by Mom & Dad. Have a jar of questions on the table. Have them be opinions so there is no right or wrong. You create dinner time as a focal point for the family. That is the only place they will get valid self esteem that’s not the self esteem of the world that is not comparison.
2. Examine your own self esteem.
Look at yourself and see how you really feel about yourself. There is a list of questions in the syllabus. Your answers to them will create a picture of how self confident you are. “Can you accept a compliment?” Men are better at saying thank you than women. “Do you seek and welcome new activities?” Our biggest problem comes after we get out of college. Once we stop formal education we stop learning. How many of you would take an online class. How many of us just say…I can’t do that? A new challenge should be exciting. How many of you have learned to do something with your hands. How many can admit you made a mistake without feeling defeated. We want them to bounce back up and say, “I learned one thing that didn’t work.”
3. Help children discover who they really are.
This is a challenge because it’s individual. I was in conference and heard President Packer give a talk about the youth of the day. “Our youth don’t believe that I am a child of God, that prayers are answered, and I can repent and be forgiven.” Do you believe those things personally. If you know that “I am a child of God” you know he loves you individually even with our weaknesses right now. You know that you can get an answer to prayer. Heavenly Father will always give you what is best for you if you know you are divine. Have a picture of the temple and a pictures of something they are doing well in their bedrooms. There should be a mirror in every bedroom. They should feel comfortable with themselves and who they are. They need a picture of them in their family. They need to have a space and items that are theirs and theirs alone. They need to feel ownership. There should not be many things that there is ownership over. There should be a few…a blanket or a special toy. There should be a sacred place somewhere that they can fill in. This is part of creating a view of who they are.
4. Establish a root system.
They need to visualize their family tree. That they belong to someone. They need to become familiar with them. They should see pictures of them. They need to read stories about them. Help them be connected with the people in this tree. If you live far from Grandparents they should write or text with grandparents or cousins. This pulls them into a network where they feel like they have a place to belong. Within the family...need a scrapbook. It needs to be easily looked at. You need pictures of them growing up. You have a child that is fond of a blanket. Take a picture of them with their blanket. Take a picture of the house they lived in when they were born. Take pictures of the cars. Take a picture of their life line. Put in pictures of vacations they take. Take pictures of them making dinner and cleaning. These need to be the whole family. This creates a feeling of belonging.
5. Fall in love with your children individually.
Think about what you did to fall in love with your spouse. (You planned activities, you went on dates, talked to them a lot, shared experiences of your life). It takes time, it takes being open. You have to spend time one on one with each child. It has to be both…quality and quantity time. You have to say…”I want to do that how can I do it?” These can be mini moments. They have to feel like they are the favorite child. This is where you build that belief in them. If they feel like they are your favorite they feel of value. They feel like they have a safe place to talk. You need to touch them. Your children need appropriate physical contact that teaches them how to give that. Share with them experiences we have. That makes them feel close to us. Write a love note to each of them individually.
HOMEWORK: Write a love note to each of your children and your spouse individually.
6. Never, never, never call your child a name, not even in jest.
Don’t call them lazy or mean. You don’t know when they are carrying a heavier burden that day and they will take it in and hang on to it forever. If you say, “You are a sweet girl, but you are behaving like a brat.” That is harmful. Be mindful of the words coming out of your mouth. Don’t use negative names on them.
7. Use positive discipline.
Don’t treat your children’s friends better than you treat your children.
8. Eliminate self gratification.
Our children need to know the difference between WANTS and NEEDS. They should be responsible to help provide for their own needs. As a senior they should be financially independent of their own needs. You need to be careful. Fault on the side of not giving them enough than giving them too much. The more you give the less they learn to be grateful.
Joe Christensen “Greed, Selfishness, & Overindulgence”
“In the words of Fred Gosman, “Children who always get what they want will want as long as they live.”6 And somewhere along the line it is important for the character development of our children to learn that “the earth still revolves around the sun” and not around them.7 Rather, we should train our children to ask themselves the question, How is the world a better place because they are in it?”
It is good in this realm to teach them to do things they don’t want to do. If they don’t want to get their Eagle, then just hurry up and get it done so it’s over. They should do a few things they don’t just necessarily want to do. Adulthood is not just doing what you want to do. Kids think that’s what adulthood is. They need to learn to do things well especially if they didn’t want to. They need to work hard. Personal Progress, Faith in God. We teach them that it’s all about them when we teach them self gratification and entitlement.
Class member: Is it wrong to say you have to earn your Eagle to get your license?
9. Turn off all electronics.
In the evening there needs to be a curfew for electronics. There needs to be time for family to gather and communicate with each other. You are bonding with whoever you are on the phone with. There need to be times when ALL devices are docked! There should not be electronics in bedrooms…no cell phones, iPads, anything connected to the internet. That is a guard you need to have for your children. Take your responsibility when it comes to electronics. Don’t think they will be responsible if you aren’t responsible.
10. Eliminate competition and create an environment of safety.
By the things we say THEY will feel like someone else is better than someone else. You can encourage them without making them competitive with each other. Don’t use…”Who can be the first…” You have a winner and a loser.
11. Teach them to think of and serve others.
They need to serve without pay. They need to serve because the service was needed. You have to teach them to look out. They don’t do it on their own. You do it by example. You do it by invitation. You create opportunities to serve out. Invite them to instigate…”Who do you think needs some help? What do you think we can do?” Do it by example, then pull them in to help you, then invite them to create the service.
Grandma’s Pet Duck
A little boy visiting his grandparents and given his first slingshot. He practiced in the woods, but he could never hit his target. As he came back to Grandma's back yard, he spied her pet duck. On an impulse he took aim and let fly. The stone hit, and the duck fell dead. The boy panicked. Desperately he hid the dead duck in the wood pile, only to look up and see his sister watching. Sally had seen it all, but she said nothing.
After lunch that day, Grandma said, "Sally, let's wash the dishes." But Sally said, "Johnny told me he wanted to help in the kitchen today. Didn't you, Johnny?" And she whispered to him, "Remember the duck!" So Johnny did the dishes.
Later Grandpa asked if the children wanted to go fishing. Grandma said, "I'm sorry, but I need Sally to help make supper." Sally smiled and said, "That's all taken care of. Johnny wants to do it." Again she whispered, "Remember the duck." Johnny stayed while Sally went fishing.
After several days of Johnny doing both his chores and Sally's, finally he couldn't stand it. He confessed to Grandma that he'd killed the duck.
"I know, Johnny," she said, giving him a hug. "I was standing at the window and saw the whole thing. Because I love you, I forgave you. I wondered how long you would let Sally make a slave of you."