Praise has had some bad press lately but hey do we mind if someone tells us what a nice meal we’ve cooked, how nice we look or what a great job we have done etc?
The main thing about praise is it needs to be genuine and not over the top.
Constantly telling a child they are brilliant, intelligent, best in the world etc can put lots of pressure on them to always perform to that standard. Research has shown that such children can be afraid to try new tasks for fear of failure, with a loss of confidence and self esteem.
Conversely encouraging children for effort – “you tried really hard,” “well done,” “good one” gives a sense of satisfaction and achievement – a feeling of self worth where they will be happy to try new challenges and gain success.
The other thing to remember with your child [or your partner!] is the behaviour you concentrate on you will get more of. If you focus on the positive, good behaviour is usually the result.
Always looking for faults brings more of the undesirable! Who feels encouraged when all we seem to do is wrong?
Great encouraging words can be:
You did it!
I knew you could do it!
You’re the one!
Hey look at that!
What a champ
That’s the way!
Good for you!
Way to go!
Go for it! I’m sure you can come up with heaps!
With young children it is a good idea to describe what they have done that is wonderful. So using the above phrases with “you’ve picked up your toys” “you’ve eaten all your dinner” etc to follow is a good idea.