Nurturing versus toxic messages. One of the most significant ways to teach our children to love themselves and their bodies is for us to communicate in a positive way. This means that your inner dialog and outward comments should be filled with encouragement and affirmations rather than put-downs and negative statements.
Nurturing communication says, both verbally and nonverbally: "I love and accept you. You are valuable and worthy." This re-framing of gratitude rather than griping can teach your kids to be more accepting of themselves and others. When your child says "My friend says I am ugly," you have an opportunity to build up the confidence needed to overcome bullying.
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Stop judging yourself and others. In order to help your kids develop strong, empowered body images, you will need to set an example. This means putting a permanent stop to any belittling comments or judgment of your own body and others'. Fill your mind and mouth with positive affirmations and encouragement rather than put-downs and negative statements.
Practice positive messages. If you truly care about the accidental messages you share with your kids about body image, practice new ways to communicate self-worth. Be much more mindful of your language when anger, frustration or old patterns trigger old responses.
As a kind, thoughtful person who wants the best for your children, begin speaking in nurturing ways that build, support and enhance. The most significant way you can improve the self-image and confidence of your child is to become a fully functional and authentic person who is grateful for the body, talents and intelligence you have been given.
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