Woodbury, Long Island, New York (516) 340-0378
How to improve your child’s self-esteem

How to improve your child’s self-esteem

Does your child lack self-esteem?

Your child’s biggest problem:
They defeat themselves in their own mind. That’s it.

By doing this, they are slowly over time killing their self-esteem which negatively affects their self-image which impacts EVERY aspect of their life.

When children lack self-esteem (aka self-love) they experience:

  • shyness
  • sadness
  • stress
  • anxiety
  • panic attacks
  • mood swings
  • anger outbursts
  • feelings of unworthiness
  • depression

Does this sound like your child?

All of the above IS fixable when you address the root issue: your child’s self-esteem.

Why your child lacks self-esteem?
(there can be many reasons, below is a common example with the many kids I work with)

Scenario: 1

Growing up, children are NOT taught to LOVE themselves or LOVE life. Instead at an early age, your child’s “intelligence” was measured by performance in every subject in school. Therefore, if your child did not excel academically, your child at age 6 (or whatever age) automatically was deemed “NOT smart”.

Scenario: 2

Conversely, if your child was lucky enough to excel in EVERY subject, then your child learned validation by manufactured benchmarks, such as grades. This created the pressure to perform in order to continue their validation of worthiness, all of which is exhausting, stressful and causes that dreadful “perfectionism” bug.

So regardless of whether your child fell into either scenario 1 or 2, that experience has shaped their self-image.

Now, should it have? No, of course not. Instead, we must teach our children that their worthiness comes from the inside and has NOTHING to do with outside accolades or other’s opinions of them. And that includes grades and everything else.

But unfortunately, the current reality lends to create a platform for your child at an early age to become very self-critical.

For example, self-critical thoughts based on the above scenarios include:

(Scenario 1) Does not excel academically:

  • I am not good enough.
  • I am not smart enough.
  • What’s wrong with me.
  • I have to study more.
  • I don’t study enough.
  • I am stupid.
  • I don’t fit in.
  • My parents are disappointed in me.
  • My grades aren’t good, so I am not a good student or person.
  • My teachers don’t like me.
  • My parents will take away my phone or privileges.
  • I’ll never get into college.
  • I’ll never amount to anything.
  • My friends are better than me because they are smarter.

Scenario 2: Does excel academically:

  • In order to be good, I MUST do well.
  • If I am smart and get a bad grade, maybe I am not smart.
  • If get a bad grade, I am disappointed in myself.
  • I must study, study, study in order to do well.
  • I must be the best to prove my worthiness.
  • I must be the best in order for my parents to be happy.
  • I receive positive attention from my parents only when I do well, so in order to feel loved, I must continue to do well.
  • I’m only as good as my last grade, which stresses me out about my next test.
  • What happens next year, if the work is harder and I’m not the best.
  • I MUST take A/P classes even though they stress me out.
  • If I fail at anything, I’m a failure.
  • I MUST do well in order to get into an IVY league school, so my parents are proud.

And the list goes on…

And I know, because I’ve worked with them. They put undue pressure on themselves to perform, fit in AND make you, the parent, happy. Let’s face it.  There is no wonder why kids’ anxiety and depression are at an all-time high. And just remember, the above scenario is pertaining to schoolwork and grades! There’s also the social aspect with making friends, succeeding in sports, the pressures of social media…and much more!

So, what’s the solution?

It’s simple. Kids must learn how to love themselves AND how to start loving life. Regardless of EVERYTHING ELSE. They must know that the only opinion of them that matters, is their own. And when they improve their opinion of themselves (their self-image), by focusing on their positive, unique qualities, they WILL feel better.

And WHEN they feel better, they will:

  • Stop equating their worthiness to their grades
  • Be nicer to themselves in their own mind (Stop focusing on the negatives and start focusing on the positives)
  • Be proud of their successes AND their failures (knowing that their success is in the ability to try new things)
  • Embrace their brilliance (not by grades, but by how they feel)
  • Love themselves so much (that they no longer compare themselves to others OR care what other people think of them)
  • Be more comfortable being around others (as they are more comfortable being themselves!)
  • Believe in themselves (no longer needing validation from anybody)

Because when your child starts loving life, life will love them back….

 Imagine that?

 

Connie Henriquez is a Teen Life Coach who has a private coaching practice located in Woodbury, NY where she teaches kids & teens how to overcome anxiety, self-doubt and improve their self-esteem in as little as 30 days utilizing her signature Start Loving Life® “positive psychology” coaching system. For more information on how your child can start loving life® call today at (516) 340-0378.

Positive Thinking for Seniors: Why you’re only as old, as you “think”

Positive Thinking for Seniors: Why you’re only as old, as you “think”

Getting older is not about decline. In fact, it is quite the opposite. So many things in our world improve with age!  But you must see it that way. So often, when people mention getting older, they line-list all the medications they’re on, complain about their body-aches and proudly display their new readers.

I get it. Living bodies age and change. But why on earth would you use those physical changes as a measure of how your life is going?  Your mind is much more powerful than your body.  Use that ever-growing, insatiable, vibrant, strong, mature bodily organ to gauge your health, regardless of the limitations of your physical body!

There are so many amazing things to enjoy and appreciate as we progress, evolve and grow. Why not focus on the opportunities that lie ahead, knowing what we’ve learned and using that knowledge as the catalyst to make the rest of our lives EVEN BETTER.

It’s strange to me how often that doesn’t happen and how people are actually using their age as an excuse or a way to hold themselves back from a continued lifetime of happiness.

It may not be easy in a world of negative stuff, but it really is worth the effort.  You should never be a slave to your age.  In fact, I dare you to use your age as a solid, powerful motivator to create the very BEST rest of your life.  And guess what?  YOU DESERVE IT!

Here are a few tips to follow right away:

Steer clear of your age. I’m not saying to be ashamed of your age. But don’t let it define you.  And don’t let other people define you by it.  Age shouldn’t be a benchmark for anything.  Plenty of people in their 60’s, 70’s, 80’s 90’s and beyond are thriving, happy and healthy. Everyone is unique, taking their own path and defining what aging looks like. Be intentional and make your journey the very best.

Stop worrying. You’ve come this far. Don’t sweat the little things going wrong; instead focus on the little things going right. Appreciate the sunlight, the air you breathe and the very precious gifts we are given every morning we wake up. Life is what we make it and the more we appreciate our surroundings the better we feel.

Stop being hard on yourself. So often, we carry guilt from things we’ve done or screwed up. Who cares? Don’t ever let past stuff hold you back. Appreciate yourself for who you are: ALL OF IT. You did the best you could with what you had, and that is enough. Remember always, YOU ARE ENOUGH.

Loveeeeee yourself. That’s right. Perhaps you have a loving family, which is always nice, but perhaps you don’t. Newsflash: You don’t need anyone to be happy! You only need yourself. Stop letting other people’s decisions or behaviors (including family members) influence your happiness. In the end, life is not about controlling others but only ourselves. Happiness does not come from others; it comes from within. Love yourself. All of you. When you do, it inspires you and everyone around you. Loving yourself is the best thing you can do, for you and for them.

And most of all, be proud of yourself. Life is not always easy and we’ve all had our fair share of struggles. Do your best not to focus on the negative; focus on the positives.  You’ve earned it. And YES, YOU ARE WORTH IT.

Long Island’s Life Coach, Connie Henriquez teaches people of all ages how to overcome stress and anxiety utilizing her Start Loving Life® “positive psychology” coaching system. For more information check out startlovinglife.com or call (516) 340-0378.

Are VIDEO GAMES BAD for KIDS?

Are VIDEO GAMES BAD for KIDS?

Many parents call me with the concern that their child is spending way too much time playing video games, whether it be Call of Duty, Minecraft, Fortnite or whatever the rage is at the moment.

And yes, if you find your child’s excessive playing is affecting responsibilities, social life and/or school work, then I definitely do recommend creating some kind of time limits to ensure your child is engaging in the world.

But, I would never suggest video games are all bad. In fact, I find that video games can help your child tremendously, especially if your child is experiencing stress, anxiety or is going through a difficult time. And yes, most parents are shocked when I say this, but let me offer you a perspective from someone who teaches kids how to love life and be happy.

As a parent, you may have a hard time relating to video games since your generation grew up very differently. For you, it was common to play outside, play with friends or just play with rocks (joke!). It took little to entertain you as a kid and as a result you felt you were more engaged in the world. And you are correct, you probably were. But that’s NOT the same world your kids are living in today. And that’s a very good thing.

Today’s world is about technology and progression. Today’s children are living proof of these advancements, as they know how to navigate an IPHONE or IPAD before even learning to walk or talk. It’s as if the kids of this new generation were born ready and willing to embrace all of what technology has to offer. This is very different compared to our generation of the Rubik’s cube, Lite Brite and if you were more advanced, Atari (another joke!).

And this is in addition to all the social media stuff (Instagram, Snapchat) as well as the constant noise in your child’s mind from social pressures, self-criticism, perfectionism, anxiety and the list goes on.

But children, who innately know the power of their minds and the need to “turn it off,” will often look to video games as an outlet. And that is not a bad thing.

Video games can allow children to shut their minds off from the daily stresses of life or negative thinking that can contribute to stress and anxiety.  Just as there are many other creative outlets, including reading, coloring, listening to music, playing an instrument, baking and even meditation, video games can be a helpful distraction if that is what your child prefers.

Each child is unique and will gravitate to the creative outlet that works best for him or her. If part of that outlet for your child includes moderate video gaming, then “let the games begin!”

Connie Henriquez is a Teen Life Coach who has a private coaching practice located in Woodbury, New York where she teaches kids & teens how to overcome anxiety, self-doubt and improve their self-esteem in as little as 30 days utilizing her signature Start Loving Life® “positive psychology” coaching system. For more information on how your child can start loving life®…call (516) 340-0378

 

How to stop living in the past and move forward.

How to stop living in the past and move forward.

How to stop living in the past and move forward.

Many times, I come across clients who believe that their past is a life sentence.

But little do they know their past can serve as quite the opposite.

The only reason why most people believe their past is a life sentence is because they have created a habit of negative thinking and ALL they do is think about the past, reference the past and talk about the past.

What they don’t realize, is that is the problem.

The more you focus on “what you don’t want”. The more you are destined to repeat it.

Therefore, the more you focus on your past, the more you invite your past “stuff” into your current life or your future life experiences.

So, the solution is, you MUST start looking towards your future.

That is the only way to move away from your past.

Because what you are thinking NOW is creating how you feel in this moment and what experiences you will attract in your future.

This means that it is super important to be deliberate in choosing your thoughts and ONLY think about the life you want.

As opposed to the live that you have lived.

And the great part is the more you do this, the better you will feel over time and you will no longer feel resentful about your past.

But Instead, you will thank it for being the catalyst in allowing you to move towards the very amazing life you want versus the “not so fun” life you have been living.

Imagine that…?

On-Air TV host of @DatenightTV and Start Loving Life® Expert Connie Henriquez LOVES to teach people how to start loving life! Connie has a private coaching practice located in Woodbury, NY where she teaches kids & teens how to overcome anxiety, self-doubt and improve their self-esteem in as little as 30 days utilizing her signature “positive psychology” Start Loving Life® coaching system. For more information on how you can start loving life®…call today for your no-cost consultation at (516) 340-0378

 

 

Do YOU feel wrong for wanting more out of life?

I remember in my early 20’s, sitting with an old friend at the Airport Diner in Bohemia, Long Island eating mozzarella sticks at 11pm. We were catching up and discussing life, and I recall being dissatisfied and pondering what was next.

Oddly enough, I remember the conversation well, as it went like this…

My friend: “Con, I feel as if you will never be happy. You are always wanting for the next. It’s as if you are never satisfied.”

Me: Whaaaaa…??: (

OMG. He was totally right. I recall sitting there with nothing more to say other than thinking, geeeez what is my problem? If this is my life I am so screwed…

Fast forward 10 years later…

I finally had a new understanding of the conversation that night. It’s funny, the things that stand out from your past that you actually remember. 

That night I thought I had a problem. And what I feared most was the mere thought of going through life never being crazy excited about waking up each day, always wanting for more and never getting it, and being strangely disappointed that I would be subjected to the same long career, typical marriage in my mid twenties and juggling some kids until they were old enough for college. Again great for some people but for me…

Little did I realize that the exact opposite would happen, and I would probably owe that conversation that night as my inspiration.

What I realized was…

I didn’t feel bad that night because my friend was right. Instead I felt bad because that conversation had me focused in opposition to everything I ever wanted, an improved job, more money, an awesome relationship…etc.

I was allowing some else’s perspective of me based on their own limited thinking (unknowingly of course…) to influence how I felt about myself and my desire for consistently wanting to grow.

As a result, I came to a very clear understanding, one in which I appreciate my friend for calling me out on…

95% of the population is content with status quo. They begin a career, work hard all their life, wake up on Monday looking forward to Friday and count the years waiting for retirement. And, if that’s you and that makes you super happy, then that is great.

But if you are anything like me, and you find the status quo terribly boring and suffocating to say the least, then you are in luck! Because you are NOT alone.

In fact, I am going to share with you the 3 MAJOR TAKE-AWAYS from that one conversation that I had learned years later that CHANGED MY LIFE and MY PERSPECTIVE so you don’t feel nuts for wanting more out of life:

Life is about the evolution of YOU. Which means you will always want for more! Long gone are the days when you pick one career and stick with it your entire life. Instead, you will create a goal, accomplish the goal and then move on to the next…

And there is nothing wrong with this at all!

In fact, the most growth, fun and satisfaction you will experience in life, is when you continuously expand your boundaries. This is where increased confidence plays a role. As the more you try new things, the more confident you will become. It is pretty amazing and life-giving once you start on this journey of self growth.

The second realization is something which is equally important and one that I was guilty of for years…

Start Appreciating YOURSELF. For years I neglected to pay attention and appreciate everything that I had accomplished so far. This includes everything, the little things, the great things and even the things you screwed up royally. Everything you do must be appreciated, because everything you do helps you clarify your likes and dislikes.

Some things you will want more of. And some things once you try you will never want to do again. Every experience allows for you to make better decisions that are aligned with the NEW you and what you are moving towards.

Start Loving Life now…

Life is about progress. Life does not stand still. Life only seems to stand still when you keep doing the same thing over and over again. This equals boring, stuck and the feeling of discontent.

Instead don’t feel wrong for consistently wanting to grow and evolve. That is what a fun, amazing life is about. Expand your boundaries and life will expand with you, allowing new and great experiences to come your way. Appreciate everything you can about everything you have lived so far. Give credit where credit is due. Every experience has created the person you are today. Don’t allow any bad experience to consume you, instead appreciate the bad experience as a clarifying moment.

And appreciate yourself for every little thing you have done or plan to do. Once you discover the value in appreciating yourself you will see how life changes in the craziest ways and crazy goooood things start to happen for you…

What steps can you take today to move your life forward?

What things from your past and present can you appreciate for allowing you to be the person you are today?

Leave your comments below 😉