Young & Naive
When I got pregnant with my oldest, I was too young and naive to understand that being a mom was more than a full-time job, it was the chance to shape a life. I didn’t know the first thing about babies or what they needed, all I knew was no matter what; my family was there to help and guide me.
On the eve of Mother’s Day, I was fortunate to attend the 2nd Annual Mom Entrepreneur Conference in Mesa, Arizona. During the keynote speech, the theme was “KNOW YOUR WORTH”. The 2010 winner talked about how all these amazing entrepreneurial women were afraid to submit their videos to be in the running for the Momentrepreneur of the Year for various reasons. Either they felt they weren’t in business long enough or they didn’t think they were good enough. What struck me about their stories was that these women started their own businesses to make ends meet for their families, to fulfill a need, to do something they were good at, and they became successful at it.
Then I got back to thinking, what is our most important jobs as moms and as leaders of our families? Now older and somewhat wiser, I realized it’s to pass on positive self-esteem and confidence to our kids. Have you ever marveled at the fearlessness in your toddler? At their boundless curiosity to learn what they can about their world with their endless questions? Sometimes these questions may drive you bananas until one day the questions stop and your teenager won’t talk to you at all. You think, what happened? Their self-esteem flickers and wanes each time we tell them we’re too busy or simply ignore them because we’re exhausted trying to make ends meet. Sometimes in anger, one might say hurtful things and unfortunately, these things stick with the kids and your once fearless toddler grows into an insecure teenager.
How can I build strong self-esteem in my kids?
The answer is to support their enthusiasm. Remember, the times when your kids were excited to show you something and you were too busy to see what they wanted? That’s exactly when you should look at what they want to show you because it shows they are WORTH your time. It tells them that what they do matters no matter how insignificant it may be in the big world. Their world is you, your spouse, your friends/relatives and everything you say to them matters.
Helping your kids build confidence can be as simple as talking to them. Telling them how proud you are of their accomplishments or acknowledging their efforts to clean up after themselves. Lastly, if you’re in the middle of making dinner and one of your kids wants to tell you a story about their day, take a moment to listen. As far as I know, no one has ever starved to death because a busy mom put dinner on hold for a few minutes to listen.
What do you think your job is as a mom? What are your tips to other moms? Leave them in the comments.