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Supporting Our Children Through Negative Self-Talk

Why convincing them against what they are thinking is not an effective strategy.

There have been many restrictions placed upon us in recent months due to COVID-19.

It's no surprise that concerns regarding the mental health of both adults and children alike are rising. 

When we are unable to connect and engage in various activities that also act as our coping strategies, resistance to communicate with our family and friends can develop.

It can also be a time that we begin to engage or hear a lot of negative self-talk. 

During these uncertain times, we can become overwhelmed as well as a little hard on ourselves. This is where our mindset can at times take a detour and you can use some assistance to get back on track.

My professional and parenting radars really start lighting up when I hear my children or other parents share that their child has been making comments such as 'I'm stupid!', 'I'm never going to be good enough!', "Nobody likes me".

Hearing these words coming out of our child's mouth often elicit one of two reactions:

  1. We tend to freeze in shock, wondering why they feel this way, and how can I help? 

  2. We try and convince them otherwise.

While it's completely understandable why we would want to convince our child otherwise when they are in the moment of this negative mindset, telling them otherwise will often encourage further arguments or force them to shut down.

Here are 4 tips to guide you through your child's negative self-talk, while helping them develop a more positive mindset.

When we come from a place of compassion, empathy and wonder, we can become effective listeners, which allows us to build a positive connection. It will also enable our children to reflect on their thoughts, process and reshape their thinking when encouraging some personal investigations as to why those thoughts appeared in the first place.

Sylvia Corzato is a parent consultant & behaviour coach, and owner of Success in Steps. With over 20 years of experience supporting

children and their families, Sylvia provide parents with tailored support and strategies to help them understand the 'why'

behind the behaviours along with 'what' is maintaining them.

Her mission is to enable parents to be the driving force behind

reaching and maintaining their family goals.

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