Body Image, Self-esteem, and Self-Confidence

Individuals who have a positive body image and self-esteem have more self-confidence. They are more resilient to the daily stresses and challenges that they may face in life. 

Body image refers to our attitudes, beliefs, and feelings about how we look and what our body can do. A positive body image means feeling comfortable in your body.
Self-esteem is closely tied to body image. It refers to how worthy and confident a person feels and the level of self-respect a person has for themselves.

Self-confidence refers to the belief in one’s capabilities, leading to a sense of self-assurance and trust in one’s skills and judgement.

Body image and self-esteem being to develop early in life and are heavily influenced by:

  • parents and caregivers,
  • peers,
  • educators, and
  • the social and physical environment children grow up in.

Tips for building students’ confidence and resilience

  1. Focus on developing a positive body image.
    • Show a positive attitude towards bodies, instead of a focus on food and weight. Show how you can be happy, healthy and active at any body size. Avoid commenting or complaining about your body or someone else’s body, particularly in front of students.
  2. Develop confidence through competency.
    • Set goals. Teach children to work towards a goal and to celebrate their accomplishments. Provide them with opportunities for success.
  3. Encourage children to try things their own way, face challenges, and take risks. Making mistakes is how we learn and grow.