From the first days of your baby’s life, you can lay the foundation for self-esteem by responding appropriately to your child’s signals for help (distress, anger, etc.) and fun (interest and enjoyment).

Many experts believe that another important building block of self-esteem involves a child’s experience of competence. Competence is initially achieved as a result of the brain’s capacity to create order out of the disorder of all the incoming stimuli. An infant’s inherent ability to develop competence lays the foundation for later, more sophisticated mastery of interaction with the world and people, which in turn may produce a sense of self-esteem. One part of this development, as a child grows, is learning that he is able to exert control over external events. As he interacts with his environment, he is also learning how to adapt in a healthy way to the external world’s social requirements and expectations.