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How to boost your teen's self-esteem and how to motivate my teenager?


how to motivate my teenager?

Encourage the teenager's motivation.

Motivation is the internal energy of all learning. It is the basis of commitment and persistence in activities. Many parents would like to give their teenager a motivational injection.

This is obviously impossible and it is better to rely on the contagion effect. For example, parents who rarely read, who have no intellectual life, or who have no interest in their teenager's school life cannot get them to be interested in academic or intellectual activities.

It is important to help your teenager to assess his level of motivation for each of the school subjects (French, mathematics, English, science, ecology, history, geography, arts, physical education, etc.).

If your teenager has low motivation in any of these subjects

  • If your teenager has low motivation in any of these subjects, discuss it freely with him using these tips:
  • Help him talk about the quality of his relationship with the teacher who teaches a subject for which he has little motivation. If he has a difficult relationship with this teacher, help him find ways to improve it.
  • If the relationship conflict persists, encourage him to find personal strategies that will prevent him from being penalized by the conflict.
  • Don't make him feel guilty or scold him.
  • Tell him what he dislikes about this subject.
  • Help him find ways to better enjoy this material.

Your teen's motivation problem may be related to learning difficulties that he or she has been experiencing for a long time. He may experience a sense of helplessness and pessimism about the future.

In our experience, the majority of young people who experience persistent learning difficulties in school do well in life. We noted two constants in these young people:

first, their parents always believed that they would end up doing well in life despite their learning problems and, second, each of them knew a significant teacher who believed in his abilities and who helped him.

It is important to convey the following values ​​to all adolescents:

  • academic performance is not determined only by intelligence;
  • the most important is the pleasure we experience during school activities;
  • academic skills and knowledge are useful for their current and future life (it is important to give concrete examples of the usefulness of what they are learning);
  • academic performance is a logical consequence of the attitudes and strategies adopted, and everyone can exercise power over this.

Promote school autonomy and learning strategies.

The adolescent is called upon to make choices in his school life.

The ability to choose and assume the positive or negative consequences of one's choices is the basis of autonomy and a sense of responsibility.

It is important that parents promote this autonomy and this sense of responsibility. Talk to your child about their sense of responsibility at school.

Highlight the positive points he shows and help him find concrete ways to improve his independence.

The adolescent must be helped to discover and apply effective learning strategies.

For example, to solve a math problem, a teenager should always ask the following questions:

• what I know (the data of the problem);

• what I am looking for (understanding the question);

• what I do (the necessary operations and the order of operations to be carried out to solve the problem).

To achieve goals, it is essential to adopt relevant strategies and a good way of working.

Thus, when planning a homework assignment or an exam to prepare, the teenager should pay attention to the following points:

  • understand the objective to be achieved;
  • plan the sequence of steps to be taken to complete the work or to prepare for the exam;
  • plan the duration of each step according to the deadline in order to avoid working or studying at the last minute;
  • plan the means or strategies to be used during each of the stages (parents should help him find them and can even suggest them to him if he so requests);
  • plan a self-correction step at the end of work.

Parents should help the teenager to take responsibility for his school life, but without directing him.

Because school responsibility is his business!

How to boost your teen's self-esteem?

Studies on self-esteem in adolescents have shown that children with low self-esteem are prone to adolescent depression.

Additionally, in some studies it has been found that low self-esteem precedes depressive reactions and also acts as their cause, while other studies note that depressive affect is detected early on, after which it develops. turns into low self-esteem.

Psychologists note that from the age of 8, children demonstrate an active ability to assess their personal success. The most significant were: appearance, academic performance, physical ability, social acceptance, behavior.

In adolescents, academic performance as well as behavior are important for the assessment of parenthood, but three others are important for peers.

Psychologists note that a caring and warm attitude of parents is a necessary condition for the formation and subsequent strengthening of positive self-esteem in adolescents.

A negative and rigid attitude of parents leads to the opposite action, and adolescents, as a rule, focus on their failures, they are afraid to take risks, they avoid participating in competitions, they become inherent in the aggression, rudeness and a high. anxiety level.

The formation of self-esteem in adolescents begins with family education. Self-esteem is the main regulator of personality behavior.

Criticality, interpersonal relationships, accuracy, attitude to their failures and successes depend on it. Adolescents waste their personal time in hesitation and lose opportunities for personal development and growth.

It would seem that awareness and understanding of this truth should only stimulate the realization of the potential inherent in it. But usually everything goes the other way around, because such behavior is more beneficial for the child in the short term.

By persuading himself that it is impossible to solve difficult problems, the child protects himself from the emergence of negative emotions associated with possible failures.

Uncertainty about their abilities oppresses the child both spiritually and physically. The teenager gets tired quickly, feels exhausted.

It is possible to increase the self-esteem of a teenager, but it will take some effort, both from the parents and from the child himself:

  • teach the child to stop comparing himself to someone, there will always be someone better than him, who will be difficult to surpass;
  • Explain to the teenager that scolding himself or eating will only worsen his state of health;
  • teach your child to respond to all praise, compliments thank you;
  • Encourage your child for small successes and praise them for big accomplishments;
  • Teach your child to repeat positive affirmations that will lead to increased self-esteem and confidence;
  • in communicating with a teenager, always be positive, optimistic, support him in all his steps;


How do you motivate a teenager in school? 

How Do I Motivate My Teen?

pubmed 2

DUCLOS, Germain. L’estime de soi, un passeport pour la vie. Montréal: Éditions de l’Hôpital Sainte-Justine, 2000. 117 p.


ACKER, Vincent. Ados, comment les motiver: la méthode Gordon appliquée à la motivation scolaire. Alleur: Marabout, 2000. 279 p.

Duclos, Germain L’estime de soi des adolescents