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Meeting some of you brings out the best of conversations…the most important conversations that show the true importance around issues of self-esteem and insecurities that run deep in our society. 

When I was asked about how a parent can boost their kid’s self-esteem, it took me back to an incident, which to me was a great example of how one can instill healthy self-esteem in their child. 

Throwback Story Time: It all goes back to when I was 9 years old and had opened the door for an elderly woman at McDonald’s, my mother reacted as if I had won the Nobel Peace Prize. Not just that, she would overreact positively to everything that I was doing right and was a good human trait…and that encouraged me to be more like that person who felt appreciated for doing a good thing. 

Yes, she held me accountable for things that didn’t matter, like grades but she also built huge self-esteem in me. That is the biggest reason I am who I am today to everybody is because of what she did for me! 

Which is why I’m fascinated by meeting parents that come up with such great questions that end up helping so many of you.


Building self-esteem in the current age is just as important. The other day I was asked if the Internet is hurting the youth? My answer is no…because the world has gotten too good at making social media a proxy to pin all our blames and unhappiness on, we fail to address the real problem.


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The most important thing you can do as a parent is make them less and less likely to succumb to the dangers around them. You can’t monitor your kids 24×7, and you definitely can’t get them to log off when literally each and every person in their life is on it. But, what you CAN do is build them up in a way that they’re rewarded for good behavior and raise them in a way that they’re not overly reliant on their outer appearance…

When you put in the work that makes them stronger, watch what happens. 

Healthy Self-Esteem ≠ Entitlement 

Another thing is how you differentiate building self-esteem in your children from mere entitlement. 

What my mom did was very smart. By reacting enthusiastically for the good stuff, it led me to understand some things super clearly. It’s that: you could suck at a ton of shit…Good! So does everybody else…You’re also probably pretty fucking rad at something. So, try as many things as possible until you figure out what you’re rad at (and like doing) and do that for the rest of your life.

Now that we have the parent’s side of things sorted, it’s time to also discuss what kept *me* away from bad things as a kid: It’s judgment, it’s other people’s opinions that never penetrated my mind. It was foreign to me when other kids let judgments get to them. I was in my own cocoon, being in my own head…it protected me from being like others and kept me away from negativity.


So, the best way to sign off on this is to know how one can build healthy self-esteem in their kid but also what the kid can do along the way to not fall prey to other people’s subjective opinions. 

Got any interesting takes? Tweet to me on Twitter at @GaryVee