There are many ways to empower your daughter; to nurture her into becoming a happy and healthy young woman. From the time they are little, we envision a bright future ahead of them, full of potential. The fearlessness with which they approach the world is inspiring! As they grow, ensuring that they keep that fearless spirit and positive outlook takes work. I share with you 11 ways to empower your daughter that you might want to try.
1. Embrace Yourself!
The first example of a self-confident, empowered woman your daughter will encounter is you. Embrace yourself: mind, body, and soul. Recognize your strengths as well as your areas of improvement. Use positive words, eat well, exercise, and use moderation. Demonstrate all the healthy behaviors you want her to develop. This is one of the best ways to empower your daughter.
2. Talk Often
Create an atmosphere of acceptance and open communication. Engage your daughter in conversation on a variety of topics including body image and bullying. Focus on her, listen closely and give informed responses when you can. She has a unique voice and valuable perspective; her thoughts and opinions matter. Encourage her to speak up about what she believes in, but also ask her why she believes what she does. This is not a challenge to her intellect but rather a way to provide a platform to practice defending her position.
3. Attend a Girls' Retreat
A girls' retreat is an opportunity to surround ourselves with like-minded women. Show our daughters that they are not alone. Many girls have similar feelings and are working to build confidence. Often a retreat will provide workshops on everything from skin care to rock climbing. You never know where inspiration will come from; girls are dynamic!
4. Women Role Models
Having your parent as your role model can be pretty darn cool. However, as our daughters grow up they instinctively look for social connections and role models outside of the home; this is a natural part of growth and development. It is important to provide our daughters with examples of empowered young women from a variety of backgrounds. There are tons of women making a positive impact around the world! Many have overcome some incredible odds and have inspirational stories to share.
5. Respect Who She is
Our daughters are incredible and unique young ladies! Allow them space to be themselves and display their own style. Accept their different perspectives, engage them, and understand that they may process the world in a different way. Whatever their personality may be, don’t try to change them. Instead, encourage them to have a balanced life of family, friends, and alone time.
6. Tackle False Expectations
Media portrayals of women are often wrong or misleading. To combat this, watch a movie together or listen to a song and talk about what you see and hear. Dispel false expectations and representations about issues like body image. Teach her that the only ideal weight is the one that keeps you healthy.
7. Daily Reminders
I love a good quote to start my day. Daily reminders can be powerful. They can help center our mind and balance our emotions for the day ahead. They help remind us that we are smart capable women. Help your daughter create two or three unique daily reminders. She can use these to begin her day on a positive note or as a kind of personal mantra in times of stress or self-doubt.
8. Good Friendships
A good friendship is like a gem in your pocket - always there to brighten your day or poke you in the side when you need it! Help your daughter understand what makes good friendship. A good friendship will help her through the tough spots when you aren’t around. It will bring a smile to her face when she needs it. It will also give her the tools she needs to be a good friend in return.
9. Be Her Cheerleader
Kids of all ages and genders want to feel love and supported. Be her biggest fan and loudest cheerleader! Support her ideas, recognize her accomplishments and talents. Encourage her and be there to give her a little push when she needs it. Then stand back (a little) and watch her grow! Accomplishing a goal through her own hard work will show her that she is capable of creating her own happiness.
10. Money Matters
Money can be a tricky discussion for many people – if you allow it to be. As our daughters grown up, it is crucial that they understand how to manage their money. A great way to begin is to give her an allowance. She can’t learn about managing money unless she has some! Once she has a little in her possession, take a finance class together to learn all aspects of money matters.
11. Practical Lessons
Do you know how to change a tire or repair the garbage disposal? Pass this information on to your daughter or take a class and learn together. Teaching your daughter to cook, clean, and change a car tire is a great way to bolster independence. If she knows how to do these things on her own she will not have to rely on anyone.
Empowering your daughter begins at home. Spend time with her and show her she is loved. Provide an open, comforting, and accepting environment. Do you have any tips on how to empower your daughter? Please, share!