Updated: Mar 1
How Positive Praise Can Change Your Child’s Behavior
One of the most common phrases parents use to praise their children is “good job.” Words like “That’s great” and “Way to go” are also common, especially when children do something worthy of acknowledgment. It is normal to give your child positive Praise when you feel good about them or the progress they make. This article will reveal to you how positive praise can change your child’s behavior.
But did you know that positive Praise can help shape your child’s behavior? Your words of encouragement may build up over time and have a significant effect on how your kid interacts with the world. So, what is the relationship between positive Praise and behavior in children? Read on to find out.
What is Praise, and How Does it Work on Children?
Praises often come when you like what someone is doing or their overall behavior. In children, they can help nurture a sense of self and confidence. You may use them to show your kid exactly how to talk and think about themselves in a positive light. Positive praises help children learn how to identify instances when they are doing well and feel good/proud of themselves.
The good thing about positive praises is that they work on children of different ages and focus on other things. For example, you may praise your 5-year-old for following your instructions or praise your teenage kid for finishing homework early without you reminding them.
Using Positive Praise to Change Your Child’s Behavior
Positive Praise positively influences children’s behavior since they are more likely to stick to actions that are worthy of Praise. In this case, praising your kid can help them rectify their bad behavior into a desirable one. For this to work, you should keep an eye on when your kid is behaving well or making a great effort. Once you spot them doing a good deed, immediately capture their attention by telling them the one thing you liked.
Though it is good to praise your child every time you spot reasonable effort or behavior, doing so more often will make you sound redundant and non-genuine. You may spice up things by using rewards to encourage your kid’s behavior. Avoid overusing rewards since your child may have higher expectations from you whenever they do something worthy of Praise.
How Children Respond to Praise
Since children have different personalities, not all of them respond positively to praises. Your kid may prefer adverse reactions such as scolding, and yelling overpraise. It is also normal for a kid to act up when you are praising them since they may not know how else to react. At times, your child may need time to familiarize themselves with praises.
Children’s brains develop depending on the environmental, mental, and psychological conditions you expose them to at an early age. If you want to see your kid maintaining good behaviors, consider praising them continually for their good deeds. If your child suddenly adopts terrible habits, stop them from happening by using your preferred discipline method. It is typical for bad habits in children to develop when you excessively praise them.
Though you will not need to praise your kid for everything, be aware that children cannot tell what is on their parents’ minds. You can nurture a mentally upright child by praising the new behavior you are teaching them.
Think about positive praises as reminders that toddlers and preschoolers need to recall the actions you encourage.
The Relationship Between Praise and Self-esteem in Children
With the increasing number of narcissists in the world today, you would not want your child to become one. Consider using positive praises to motivate your child to continue handling difficult tasks instead of using them as a tool to make them overconfident about themselves. Since recognition helps cultivate an attitude for success, it can help children learn better and put in the effort required for a particular task.
Children with low self-esteem are likely to feel worthless or ashamed after a failure if you praise them for their personal qualities instead of their efforts. It may seem to you that praising their qualities will help them feel good about themselves and, in turn, raise their self-confidence. The truth is that the positive praises may convey to the kids that you only value them as a person once they succeed. To them, a subsequent failure will make them feel that they are unworthy.
Issues with self-esteem in children usually stem from parents’ inability to tell the difference between praising their kids’ efforts and praising them as a person. Children, just like adults, have insecurities that come from their personal qualities. Any mention of their unique attributes may positively affect their confidence. Consider praising your kid’s efforts regarding a particular activity instead of praising their individual characteristics.
Does Praise Have Any Negative Effects on Children?
Praises may undermine your kid’s motivation and determine their performance in day-to-day tasks. Depending on the situation, they may also encourage narcissistic behavior or damage self-esteem in children. You should also note that some kids dislike getting Praise since they hate the attention it brings. Parents who like praising their infants all the time may even seem insincere.
Though kids’ brains are often yet to fully develop, they know when their parents or guardians are trying to feel sorry for them or being manipulative. If your praises are insincere, they may send a message to your kid that you do not understand them. Once they become old enough to analyze your motives and beliefs, they will resent insincere Praise. Most children reach this realization when they are 4 or 5 years old.
Since maturity in children comes with behavior change, your kid will not want to lose your approval and respect. Whenever they come across a new challenging situation, they will retreat to avoid failure or look bad. You may notice these changes if you used to give lots of positive praises to your child. Kids with low self-confidence are prone to experiencing this effect.
The Bottom Line
As explained above, Praise may involve phrases used to tell someone that you like how they are behaving, and it works well when it points out the behavior you like the most. However, positive Praise may have damaging effects such as low self-esteem and selfish behavior in children. While you may want to use compliments as a motivational tool to your kid, avoid overusing them since they may heavily affect your young one’s behavior.
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