4 Things Every Parent Should Know About Raising a Daughter TrendyVoice

12 June 2016

4 Things Every Parent Should Know About Raising a Daughter

Every parent wants a daughter that's independent,
resilient, and confident. Here are some simple steps you can take to instill these ideas at a young age.

•Encourage Emotional Expression
Anger may not seem conventionally feminine, but
healthfully expressing it can be a superpower.
Girls are often encouraged to let positive emotions
flow, while keeping a lid on harsher feelings, like
anger — which isn't healthy. Even out this playing
field by allowing your daughter to express a whole
range of emotions.

"Allowing a toddler or preschool-age girl to
experience sadness, defeat or anger will help her
understand that it's okay to feel that way and how
she can recover or move on to feeling happier,"
explains Cora Reidenbach, a school psychologist.
Listen with genuine care to help her understand and
name her feelings. Moving forward, she won't be
surprised when they arise, and will have an easier
time discussing them.

•Compliment More Than Her Appearance
At a young age, girls begin expressing worry about
their shape and size. And sadly, not all media
teaches girls the right positive message—that
beauty comes from within. From early on, girls learn
that it's crucial to be "pretty."

While it's fine to tell your daughter she's pretty now
and then, complimenting her appearance most
perpetuates these ideas, suggesting that her looks
matter more than who she is.

"Praise and positive reinforcement are crucial for
young girls to feel confident and self-assured," says
Reidenbach, "not only for their successful attempts
at an activity, but also their attempts at trying
something that they may not like or treating a peer
with kindness."

To ensure a strong sense of self, praise your
daughter's values and the activities she excels at
and enjoys. Don't be sparing with high fives, hugs or
other small acknowledgements. Take advantage of
doing this while she's young, before she gets to the
age where parents start to seem very uncool.

•Encourage Physical Strength
Batter up! Girls who play sports tend to have more
positive body image and experience greater
emotional well-being than girls who don't, according
to the Women's Sports Foundation. They also show
less depression and higher confidence.

While your daughter doesn't need to take up a
particular sport to reap these benefits, encourage
her to engage in physical activities she enjoys. In
doing so, she'll be more likely to appreciate her body
for its capabilities and gain many related perks of
exercise, such as boosted energy and better sleep.

Sports games are also the perfect opportunity for
you to catch up with other moms on everything from
the stealth addition of veggies to desserts, to
dissecting that week's celebrity gossip.

•Model Empowered Behavior
The most powerful way to empower your daughter
may be providing a fabulous example at home. Your
attitudes, language and behaviors have a huge,
lasting impact on her self-perception, strength and
Use positive language to talk about yourself,
because you're a Mom. Moms rock.

Eat for energy, health and pleasure; versus weight
Stay engaged in your own life passions, and express
and cope with your own emotions.

When you're stressed, take time to breathe —
encouraging your daughter to do the same.
"Teaching breathing techniques is a great calming
strategy, as is pausing to think about what's
happened and processing their feelings with a loving
adult," Reidenbach encourages.

Being that loving adult for yourself and your
daughter is a win-win that can last a lifetime.

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