Free Your Mind, And the Rest Will Follow...May 4, 2001 Write an essay on this topic.
Popular Products in Auto Parts and AccessoriesThe Bottom Line Our children are our future and everything that we teach them is crucial to their development. Teaching a positive self-image goes a long way in building self-esteem.
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SELF, is the basis of who we are. Are we self-centered, self-absorbed, self-conscience, self-contained, self-confident or self-destructive?? It all begins, in my opinion, with a healthy view of one's self.
ESTEEM, is the way we value ourselves. Do we have high regard for ourselves, place high value on our opinions and give ourselves the respect that is due us? Esteem is necessary, in my opinion, to be all that we can be, achieving our goals, no matter what we aspire to be or do in our lifetime.
SELF-ESTEEM is the key to the entire picture of who we are and how we value ourselves. If we, as parents, have a low self-esteem, how can we possibly instill high self-esteem in our children? If you find yourself placing a great amount of emphasis on outward beauty and physical appearance, how can you teach your child that "beauty is skin deep"; that it is the inner beauty that is so much more important than what is on the outside?
Recently, my family and I had the opportunity of a lifetime. We taped a segment on a nationally televised talk show which will air shortly. The topic of the show is one that is dear to my heart..."Inspirational Children With Physical Differences". All of the featured guests on this influential show stole a piece of my heart and will forever be in my prayers until the day that I leave this earth.
These children are my heros and I applaud their parents for the wonderful and difficult job that they have in building their children's self-esteem. In our society, where too much pressure is placed on our children to look like others, be like others and act like others, we as parents, need to teach our children that we are all individuals, created with unique qualities that make us each very, very, special.
This editorial is dedicated with love and respect to Candace, Brianna and Bradley, Sarah, Joshua and Ativa. Each of these spectacular young ones brought tears to my eyes due to their physical differences and their sad stories of being taunted, picked on and called names by other children who were not taught by their parents that we are all God's creations and we are all different in very special ways.
Building a healthy self-esteem starts from the time a child has awareness of their surroundings. If a child is raised to believe that all nose sizes are not the same, skin colors do have varying degrees of melanin, or that height is not a factor in how funny, creative or smart a person is, then our society is off to a great start in raising some socially aware children.
The children that we met were born with conditions that made them victims of constant stares, name-calling, finger pointing and whispers. The beautiful part of these children, however, was that they did not act like victims! Although their lives have been painful at times, they were loved and felt respected by those who mattered most in their lives! The level of their self-esteem was so high that one little girl said, "I don't care how I look on the outside because my beauty comes from within". Sarah is a nine year old with the wisdom and strength of a sage.
Brianna and Bradley are primordial dwarves who do not allow their small stature to adversely affect who they are. At nine and eleven years old, they stand only 3 feet tall and weigh twelve pounds. These siblings are extremely talented and so personable. Each has learned to deal with society looking at them in awe. They relish in it, in fact, and believe that the way that their size affects other people "it's their problem!" These are enormous words out of the mouths of babes.
Building a high self-esteem is a life time process, in my opinion. Parents must be willing to devote the time and attention needed to help their children to cope with life on a daily basis. Tell them how great they are, how smart, how talented, how beautiful! Help them to develop their creativities and how to channel their energies into positive outlets like sports, gardening, or volunteering to help others. We need to set positive examples for our children to follow!
My granddaughter, Candace, and a little boy that she met named Joshua became fast friends. Five year old Joshua didn't notice Candace's facial birthmark and Candace was totally oblivious to Joshua's deformities. They hugged and played, giggled and shared toys like any other youngsters would. This comes from being raised to accept people for who they are, their positive attitudes and kindness shown toward them. If only all children could behave this way.
Ativa, the final guest on the show, is an angel. She cares very little that she was born with no neck. So what!! She is still an A student in school, an artist, a singer and a dancer! Who needs a neck when she is normal in every other way! It is people out and about who make a big deal over this physical detail. Nine year old Ativa is well on her way to becoming anything that her mind leads her to be. Her self-esteem towers over the average adult and her mother and family continues to do a magnificent job to keep her encouraged. The sky is the limit when our self-esteem is at it's highest level.
So, what is your self-worth? Do you have self-respect, or are you self-loathing, self-analytical and self-demeaning? Do you have what it takes to be self-educated, self-employed, and self-sufficient?
It all begins with a healthy self-image and a high self-esteem.
Free your mind and open up your heart to the needs of others. We must stop being self-centered and self-righteous when it comes to how we view others!
We must help to teach our children to obtain and maintain a positive self-image and encourage them to believe in themselves.
Can we do it? YES WE CAN!!
~~~Please read the other submissions on the "Random Thoughts Editorial Write-off"~~~
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