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ATA Excellence Martial Arts

The Crisis of Porcelain Thoroughbreds and How to Stop It!

Posted: January 26, 2018

For years self-esteem was a buzz word in child development. Parents were super concerned about making sure their children grew up with a healthy sense of self-esteem but it back fired. Parents and child development experts realized that just telling kids how great they are didn't really build self-esteem. A term often used for children who have developed this way is "porcelain thoroughbreds." They look tough but the break easy.

We want to make sure our students at ATA Excellence Martial Arts develop real self-esteem so that they can become leaders in their families and communities!

3 tips for helping your children build real self-esteem:

Back Up Words with Work! One of the most common things people do to build self-esteem is to encourage their children. This is good but it needs to be done when the child actually works to achieve something. The problem arises when we tell children how special they are for doing nothing of value or that builds grit. Praise children when they try something hard. Even if they aren't successful they will grow in their self-esteem by trying things that are outside of their comfort zone.

Stick With It! Children often are seen skipping from one activity to the next trying to do well in basketball, football, soccer, hockey, and three other activities. This is a recipe for keeping a child's ability only surface level. One of the best ways to develop self-esteem is by building a deep knowledge of something. Taking the time to develop this level of knowledge often requires a degree of grit that will really help build real self-esteem.

Catch Them Doing Something Right! Parents are experts at seeing and hearing everything children do wrong and it's important to correct those behaviors but often this leads to a lack of positive reinforcement. One way to make sure you're building self-esteem in your children is by recognizing them when they do something right. Try to make sure you find something to encourage your child about each day so they know when they are doing something great.


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