Kid Confidence: Help Your Child Make Friends, Build Resilience, and Develop Real Self-Esteem

Kid Confidence: Help Your Child Make Friends, Build Resilience, and Develop Real Self-Esteem

Kid Confidence: Help Your Child Make Friends, Build Resilience, and Develop Real Self-Esteem

Kid Confidence: Help Your Child Make Friends, Build Resilience, and Develop Real Self-Esteem


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"A wise and realistic program for instilling genuine self-esteem in children."
Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Help your child cultivate real, lasting confidence! In Kid Confidence, a licensed clinical psychologist and parenting expert offers practical, evidence-based parenting strategies to help kids foster satisfying relationships, develop competence, and make choices that fit who they are and want to become.

As parents, it’s heartbreaking to hear children say negative things about themselves. But as children grow older and begin thinking about the world in more complex ways, they also become more self-critical. Alarmingly, studies show that self-esteem, for many children, takes a sharp drop starting around age eight, and this decline continues into the early teen years. So, how can you turn the tide on this upsetting trend and help your child build genuine self-esteem?

With this guide, you’ll learn that self-esteem isn’t about telling kids they're “special.” It’s about helping them embrace the freedom that comes with a quiet ego—a way of being in the world that isn't preoccupied with self-judgment, and instead embraces a compassionate view of oneself and others that allows for both present awareness and personal growth. When kids are less focused on evaluating and comparing themselves with others, they are freer to empathize with others, embrace learning, and connect with the values that are bigger than themselves.

You’ll also discover how your child’s fundamental needs for connection, competence, and choice are essential for real self-esteem. Connection involves building meaningful and satisfying relationships that create a sense of belonging. Competence means building tangible skills. And choice is about being able to make decisions, figure out what matters, and choose to act in ways that are consistent with personal values. When children are able to fulfill these three basic needs, the question of “Am I good enough?” is less likely to come up.

If your child is suffering from low self-esteem, you need a nuanced parenting approach. Let this book guide you as you help your child create unshakeable confidence and lasting well-being.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781684030491
Publisher: New Harbinger Publications
Publication date: 01/02/2019
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 1,106,262
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Eileen Kennedy-Moore, PhD, is a clinical psychologist based in Princeton, NJ, and mom of four. A trusted expert on children’s feelings and friendships, Kennedy-Moore is a professor for The Great Courses, serves on the advisory board for Parents magazine, and blogs for Psychology Today.

Kennedy-Moore has written or coauthored many books, including Growing Friendships: A Kids’ Guide to Making and Keeping Friends, Smart Parenting for Smart Kids, The Unwritten Rules of Friendship, What’s My Child Thinking?, and What About Me? Twelve Ways to Get Your Parents’ Attention (Without Hitting Your Sister). Her audio-video series is called Raising Emotionally and Socially Healthy Kids.

Learn more at,, and

Michele Borba, EdD, is an educational psychologist and internationally-recognized parenting and character development expert. She author of twenty-four books, including her latest, UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World.

Table of Contents

Foreword vii

Part 1 Introduction

1 Why Telling Our Kids They're Wonderful Doesn't Build Real Self-Esteem… and What Does 2

2 How Children's Self-Esteem Changes with Age 12

Part 2 Connection

3 "Why Are You Always Yelling at Me?": When Your Child Reacts Intensely to Parental Correction 26

4 "You Love Her More!": When Your Child Struggles with Sibling Jealousy or Conflict 50

5 "Nobody Likes Me!": When Your Child Feels Friendless 73

Part 3 Competence

6 "I Can't Do It! I Quit!": When Your Child Gives Up Easily 94

7 "It's Not Good Enough!": When Your Child Suffers with Harsh Self-Criticism and Perfectionism 114

Part 4 Choice

8 "I Can't Decide!": When Your Child Feels Trapped by Indecision and Helplessness 136

9 "I Don't Fit In!": When Your Child Struggles with Feeling Different 154

Part 5 The Bigger Picture

10 Coping with Bullying, Teasing, and Other Meanness 178

11 Real Self-Esteem and the joys of a Quiet Ego 193

Works Cited and Consulted 202


Kennedy-Moore resides in Princeton, NJ.

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