A famous author wrote once that it's during our teenage years that we choose the mask we’d like to wear for the rest of the world. I remember being so insecure about things as a teenager that I don't give a second thought now in my mid-twenties. Sometimes I wish I could go back and tell my younger self to stop and smell the roses. That these are some of the best years of your life and to truly enjoy them. Hindsight's a beautiful thing isn't it?!
If you have a teenager in your life, they could probably need a boost to their confidence once in a while. It doesn’t matter if it’s their looks, grades, friends, or dating. They're trying to figure all of this out at once which can be a seriously difficult time for some young girls.
Here's a handful of ways to help your teen find that sense of self-esteem in them that doesn’t just help them to find a mask to wear but perhaps even gives them confidence enough to take it off once and for all.
Find something they excel at
One of the things we tend to realise a bit later in life is that confidence doesn’t necessarily come from how we look. Beautiful people can be insecure and in need of reassurance while the most funny-looking people can fill an entire room with their confidence as soon as they walk in.
Having a skill or talent that sets them apart from their peer group could increase their self esteem and help them feel special and as they have something to offer.
Sign them up for sports, or help them find another hobby they can excel in. It's our accomplishments and sense of empowerment that build confidence and helps us to feel like we’re actually worth something. This could be exactly what your teen needs.
Another point to keep in mind is that this applies to their schoolwork as well. Encouraging good grades is one thing but what about praising them and rewarding their hard work? While any teenager might feel a bit anxious when they look in the mirror, any of them would enjoy the confidence boost from a straight A as well.
Take their concerns seriously
Sure, talking about how they can achieve in other areas and understand that confidence is built through accomplishments rather than looks is great and all - but being happy in our own skin is also important.
Sports may be able to help them out with feeling more confident with their bodies but try to take their concerns seriously nonetheless and help them out where you can. Things that can be fixed, such as teenage skin issues or crooked teeth are good places to start.
Talk about cosmetic dentistry if your teen is unhappy with their smile or book them in to see a dermatologist if they struggle with acne. These are the kinds of issues that won’t just lower their self-esteem but it might even be painful. Straight teeth and a good bite aren't just vanity issues, they can aid with headaches and tension in the jaw too.
Taking your teen seriously will help them to feel like they are being heard as well instead of just brushing them off.
Be confident in YOUR self
Teenagers and young people are perceptive to the energies and behaviour of the adults around them. Talking about yourself or your appearance in a bad way only reinforces negative self talk to your teenager. Set an example by practising self love, care and compassion.