How do we build confidence and self-esteem in our daughters and our sons?
It seems by the time they leave high school many have routinely and negatively compared themselves to not only their friends and peers but to a huge number of individuals in the wider world via the internet.
Pre-ten years old, pre-ego, for the most part, confidence and self-esteem are high.
Give them a photo shoot and they love it- they comfortably dress up, play let’s pretend, and fully embrace fantasy while still knowing who they are. Ultimately, its fun!
They want more photos and are excited by what they see.
It’s hard to believe things are about to change for the worse and continue to worsen well into adulthood.
Challenged by puberty, the education system, and bullies and trolls, to mention a few, confidence begins to plummet, and self-esteem too.
So how can photography help?
I believe photography can play a significant part in providing a sense of self-value, providing an opportunity to see themselves in a more positive light, and creating a sense of pride in their uniqueness.
I know from experience at my portrait studio this can and does happen for women following their portrait experience.
As a society, we are all aware women are arguably, almost always their very worst critics. Conditioned from birth to look for our faults, why wouldn’t we struggle to see the best?
We could, and should, start to change this.
If we can change the way we feel about ourselves through photography then it is much more powerful than we realise, and we need to recognise the deeper benefits.
The world would be an infinitely better place if we all thought better of ourselves and upgraded the way we saw ourselves.
Like the oxygen mask on a plane, fix yourself first. Experience a portrait session for you and see how you feel afterwards.
Check those negative thoughts and messages, external and internal, and speak more kindly to yourself and to others. Then follow by treating others in the same way.
Be that change in your world, and free up your positive self to make your children’s world better too.