Monthly Archives: September 2012

Taking control of your self-esteem

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Taking control of your self-esteem

Self-esteem can be the most vital tool in reaching happiness, inner peace and success.

There are two primary sources of one’s self-esteem: what we think of ourselves and what others think of us. If you imagine self-esteem represented as a pie divided into those two main sources, how would you divide it to represent your own self-esteem? Would you say that your self-esteem depends mostly on your self-perceptions, or on how others perceive you? Or do you rely on both sources equally? Are you satisfied with your individual proportion? If not, there is work to be done to come closer to your “ideal self”. What would be the ideal proportion for you?

If you feel that your self-esteem depends more

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Adolescent self-esteem – how parents can help

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Adolescent self-esteem - how parents can helpDuring adolescence, the development of a strong sense of self and of self-worth is vital, as self-esteem will positively or negatively affect your teen’s choices – who they hang out with, how well they do in school, whether or not they experiment with drugs and alcohol, and every other aspect of their life. So how do you know if your teen is suffering from low self-esteem, and how can you help?

 Watch for the following:

  • Negative mindset
  • Self-neglect
  • Social isolation
  • Second-guessing own opinions
  • Overly concerned about other’s opinions
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Extremely defensive
  • Need for perfectionism
  • Symptoms of mood disorders such as anxiety or depression
  • Attention seeking behavior
  • People pleasing traits

Teens are bombarded by both personal and outside influences, any …

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Help put the brakes on bullying – part 3

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Help put the brakes on bullying - part 3In Part 1 of this series we spoke about the phenomenon that is bullying, and in Part 2 we offered ways to uncover when bullying is happening.  In this final instalment we will look at ways to help stop the bullying – whether your child is the victim or the instigator.

What should you do if you know your child is the victim of bullying?

  1. Stay calm. One of the worst ways to respond is to let your anger bubble over. Do your part to end the cycle of aggression by being calm and reasonable.
  2.  Don’t brush off the claim. Assure your child that you’re relieved that he or she told you. Be understanding and explain that you’ll
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Uncovering the signs of bullying – part 2

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Uncovering the signs of bullying – part 2Whether your children are leaders or followers, confident or socially awkward, they have without doubt experienced bullying firsthand, either by witnessing bullying, being a victim, instigating or perpetrating it.

Children may not disclose that they or a friend is being bullied for several reasons which may include:

  • Shame
  • Fear of further recrimination by the bully if an adult intervenes
  • Fear of not being believed
  • Concerns being dismissed (e.g.  adults saying the bully is a good kid and bullying would be out of character)
  • Adults advising or expecting the child to “suck it up” and ignore or put up with the bullying

It’s critical that adults listen without judgment, support the child in his disclosure and move to find out …

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How serious is bullying? part 1

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How serious is bullying? part 1Bullying is not a new phenomenon; it happens in schools, on the Internet, in parks and virtually anywhere children and teenagers spend time.   What was once tolerated and considered a ‘natural part’ of growing up is now being taken much more seriously.   Researchers have been studying bullying and its impact; one recent study by CAMH reports a steady 34% rate of bullying and psychological distress in children in grade 7 to 12 in Ontario since 1999, however, the rate of bullying in girls has increased by 7% to 43% while the rate in boys has lowered.

We may question whether bullying is on the rise or whether there is less tolerance, more awareness and attention to its occurrence.  Regardless, it …

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