We all have egos – ‘sense of self-esteem or self-importance’ – and a healthy ego is vital for our wellbeing.
Recently I ran our Pozitive Kidz are happy kidz workshops for grade five and six students at a primary school. The workshops focused on building self esteem from a Tai Chi perspective.
After the workshops the wellbeing teacher emailed me the following student feedback and gave me permission to use it.
- “We have had 3 sessions with Chris Bennett. He taught us relaxation techniques to help calm us down. He came to teach us how to have fun through relaxation”. Callum
- “Tai Chi has involved movement like belly breathing and the meaning of Yin & Yan. Yin means calm, Yan means active. It is used to calm us down like meditation”. Kellie
- “Chris is a wonderful Tai Chi expert. He has taught us many things such as preventing ‘monkey brain'”. Jon
- ‘Each time Chris teaches us more about the history of Tai Chi and its different uses. He is a funny and joyful guy who is very entertaining and makes sure we all have fun’. Sam
- “Tai Chi is fun and calming. It is calming because when we meditate, it is relaxing”. Josh
It certainly boosted my ego, as it’s not often I get feedback from students after a workshop. Usually teachers are too busy to do so or they have a policy that prohibits publicly giving student feedback.
Usually I can assess, during the workshop, if the students are enjoying themselves. Most of the time they do.
This student feedback caused me to reflect that, like children, adults need positive feedback to build and maintain a healthy ego.
One way of doing this is by using the Toastmasters’ method of commend and recommend.
Commendations should be earned and we should always look for opportunities to give them.
Recommendations should be couched in positive language and given only where it is important. Too many recommendations can be overwhelming to children and adults.
What I do in the Positive Kidz workshops is always look for opportunities to commend good behaviour. You should see the reaction from the children. Very positive!
When I need to recommend the desired behaviour I do it with a smile without criticising the poor behaviour.
This takes a lot of patience but it is vital to help build healthy egos because I know ‘where egos I go’.