What does it mean to make a lower comparison? In this article, you will learn the reasons for your children’s negative social comparisons.
Downward Comparisons Need To Be Defined.
As a form of social comparison, a downward comparison is a type of social assessment. When we compare ourselves to others who are less skillful or lucky than we are, we are engaged in the practice of negative self-talk. For example, a tween suffering at soccer might think, “Well, at least I can block better than he can,” while comparing themselves to the poorest player on the team.
Unlike upward comparisons in which a child compares himself to the top player on the team, downward comparisons occur when a child compares himself to the worst player on the squad. Comparisons can damage a child’s self-esteem to others.
What’s Wrong With Making Downward Comparisons All the Time?
The risk is that a youngster would stop striving to improve and instead develop an overblown, inflated sense of self if they only make downward comparisons. Downward comparisons can also be harmful because they safeguard one’s self-esteem from being eroded by an abundance of upward comparisons.
To help their children see themselves objectively, parents might teach them to look back at their own lives and not compare themselves to the lives of others. For example, if a soccer player wants to score more goals, he could assess how many goals he scored in the previous season and look for ways to improve. Comparisons with students with diverse athletic abilities, physical stature, and other characteristics are preferable.
It is important to remember that while social comparisons are inevitable, a healthy mix of upward and downward comparisons may keep them positive.
Parents can help minimize their children’s use of social comparisons by not engaging in them themselves.
When comparing your youngster to his elder sibling, avoid mentioning specific developmental achievements the older brother achieved.
There is a lot of envy and anger among siblings because of their constant comparisons. Children may be encouraged to compete with themselves rather than their siblings if they are not compared.
How to Avoid the Use of Relative Measures
Parents can help their children understand that comparing themselves to others is unfair because everyone is unique. It’s unfair for your youngster to compare himself to the team’s weakest soccer player just because he’s bigger or has played the game longer.
As with downward comparisons, this is also true. The top player’s parents may have paid for him to attend soccer camp every year for the past many years. Comparisons are tainted by this advantage as well.
There are many reasons for children’s negative social comparisons. But you can teach them that comparing two people isn’t a good idea because each person has a genetic edge or other benefits. Tell them that the world’s greatest athletes compete against each other and the records they have achieved.
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