When I look at my daughters, I think “If I was half as pretty, smart and talented as they are now, I would have been dangerous in high school.” The problem with that statement is that I was just as pretty, smart and talented in high school, but I did not realize it and I really lacked confidence in myself.
And no matter how great we think our kids are, they must know this for themselves. They must believe in themselves and their own abilities. Did you know that girls’ confidence begins to drop at age 9,1 and by the age of 10 their physical activity levels also start to decline and keep decreasing throughout their adolescence?2
As parents, our kids look up to us and depend on us for guidance. And we play a large role in how they see themselves and the world. Therefore, we really must be intentional about helping our daughters grow in their confidence. This is nothing new. But what is new is that modern-day parents must compete with so much more messaging that our girls are exposed to via social media and on-line platforms. Good or bad, these platforms are also shaping the way they see themselves and the world.
Our two youngest girls don’t have smart phones or social media accounts (yet.) But, our oldest daughter does. And I not only monitor the amount of time that she spends on those devices, but I am also monitoring what she is being exposed to. If I don’t watch it, she will spend all her time watching others online and no time developing herself and working towards her own goals. And the only physical activity that she will be getting is with her thumbs and index fingers with all that texting and swiping!
This is why I am so excited about the partnership between Always #LikeAGirl and Target. They have come together to empower girls everywhere by donating one million dollars to Girls on the Run,
Girls on the Run is a nonprofit organization that provides a physical activity-based positive youth development program to girls in the third to eight grades. It’s a 10-week program that helps develop a lifetime appreciation of health and fitness in the girls. And the program ends with the girls completing a service project for their communities and completing a celebratory 5K.
As a mom of 3 girls, I really love the mission of the Girls on the Run program because it encourages girls to appreciate health and fitness in a fun way. I want health and fitness to be a way of life for my girls versus something they must do to maintain a certain body image.
To-date Girls on the Run has served more than 1.4 million girls. The one million dollar donation from Always and Target will enable thousands more girls to participate in the program and it will also help Girls on the Run reach their goal or serving 2 million girls by 2021.
Here are 7 ways to boost your girls’ confidence with a modern-day twist:
As I mentioned above, we, as parents, must do our parts in promoting self-confidence, such as enrolling our girls in programs like Girls on the Run. And with that being said, here are 7 ways to boost your girls’ confidence (with a modern-day twist of course.)
1. Monitor what they are reading/listening to on-line. I am all up in their business every day. I am always asking, “What are you watching?” or, “what are you reading?”
2. Talk to your girls every day. In addition to encouraging them daily, we need to talk about what they are seeing on-line which gives us the opportunity to educate them and counter negative messaging.
3. Set Goals with them – Have you ever seen those hashtags like #RelationshipGoals,#SquadGoals, #HairGoals. Teens use those hashtags when they see something online that they like and they want to aspire to. Well, my girls set and work towards accomplishing their own goals. #MyGoals
4. Keep them involved in extra-curricular activities. Cheerleading, basketball, reading clubs, chorus, piano, and soccer are just a few activities where my girls participate. If you have daughters in third grade through eighth grade, I highly recommend Girls on the Run as it would be such a positive experience they can be a part of. Participating in activities help them develop socially and boosts their confidence and self-esteem.
5. Lead by example – I don’t want my girls to see me lacking confidence and hear me talking negative about myself, I need to lead by example.
6. Watch your mouth – Since I know that words have power, I want my words to build up my girls and not tear them down.
7. Get on social media – Sorry parents, but this is the modern-day twist that you have been waiting for. Don’t avoid social media platforms…learn how to use them so that you can monitor your kids and talk to them about what they are seeing.
BMWK – Let us know in the comments below what you are doing daily to boost your girls’ confidence? Please join us in spreading the word about the great work that Always, Target and Girls on the Run International are doing to empower girls.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Always and Target. The opinions and text are all mine.
1 Self-Esteem: Robins, R.W., Trzesniewski, K.H., Tracy, J.L., Gosling, S.D., Potter, J. (2002). Global Self-Esteem Across the Life Span. Psychology and Aging, 17(3), 423-434
2 Physical Activity: Smith, A. L., & Biddle, S. J. H. (2008). Youth physical activity and sedentary behavior: Challenges and solutions. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.
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