Rushville Republican

Columns

July 1, 2014

Self-esteem should be earned and not given freely

I recently read what I felt was a disturbing article. It concerned today’s youth and their self-esteem.

Self-esteem is defined as a sense of one’s own dignity or worth. According to the article, “Today’s teenagers and young adults are far more likely than their parents to believe they’re great people, destined for maximum success as workers, spouses and as parents.”

Research for the article was completed by comparing survey data from three decades and came to the conclusion that baby boomer parents are more likely than their parents to praise children and in most cases over-praise them.

A number of things are different today than they were 30 years ago. The world is a different place. That being said, during my formative years, the youth at that time knew where they stood and in most cases what it took to get beyond that - hard work, patience and diligence.

When we were incorrect in our actions or efforts, we were made clear of that. The same could be said when our efforts were right or acceptable.

An example from then and now can be found in youth sports. Back in my days of playing Little League not every player made the cut. At that time, we had LL and Farm League here in Rushville. Players with the ability made the upper division while others remained at the lower level or were not picked at all.

In looking back, I do not feel that was wrong. I was fortunate and made the upper division while others my age never did play beyond the Farm Division. That did not hurt them, a number of my friends at the time tried harder the following year and were rewarded for their efforts by being picked. In many cases, they were better because of the extra effort.

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