Michael Hurd writes:
Most people assume self-esteem is a good thing. However, most people do not know what “self-esteem” actually is.
Most probably assume that self-esteem refers to feeling good about yourself. That’s not wrong. But exactly how does one arrive at feeling good about oneself?
No answer is ever given. Teachers, counsellors, and many parents of young children often assume, “If you just tell the child good things about him- or herself, the child will feel good.”
But such an approach is wrong. It’s indiscriminate. It teaches young children that they’re good — actually, great — no matter what.
It’s basically a lie. Or at least a half-truth. Parents and teachers won’t criticize, not even constructively. This is just as bad as always putting down a child, never building the child up or telling him what he does well.
The child comes into young adulthood with a sense that everyone should be telling him or her how great he or she is. After all, that’s what all those teachers did. That’s what parents often did. “So why isn’t the rest of the world greeting me that way?”
Read on here: The Self-Esteem Equation