Nurturing Your Daughter’s Self-Esteem

January 4, 2018
Nurturing Your Daughter’s Self-Esteem

The start of a new year is a great time to focus on building positive relationships and increasing self-esteem.

This is especially important for girls, who often encounter mixed messages from adults, peers and the media.

Here are some tips on how you can help nurture your daughter’s self-esteem in 2018…

Be a positive role model. Don’t talk negatively about your own body. Try not to be overly focused on your appearance.

Listen to your daughter. Encourage her to speak her mind.

Focus praise on effort and accomplishments. Demonstrate to your daughter that her effort and determination are important and valuable.

Watch how you talk about other people. Are you judgmental of people’s appearances? Make sure you’re sending a message to your child, regardless of gender, that it’s how we treat others that defines a person.

Get men involved. Your daughter benefits from receiving feedback from men on her accomplishments. Encourage her father, or other important male adults in her life, to be an active presence.

Watch your own stereotypes. Don’t restrict your children’s activities based on your own judgement.  Let your daughter help build furniture and your son help make dinner.

Discuss how girls are portrayed in the media. Watch television, movies, and other media alongside your daughters and sons.  Talk about what they see and ask questions.

Help your daughter avoid becoming preoccupied with how she looks. Avoid praising physical beauty whenever possible. Instead, comment on your daughter’s physical strength, or compassion.  Discuss with both your daughter and son how ads portray girls.

Let your daughter fail. Don’t rush in to fix things and to rescue her.  Help her to learn to enjoy taking on challenges and working hard.

Present extracurricular choices. Encourage your daughter to explore math or chemistry, and other experiences that are more stereotypically male.

Get physical. Encourage your daughter to be involved in sports or other physical activities. Regular physical exercise she enjoys, can enhance her mental health, reduce symptoms of stress and depression, and help her feel strong and competent.


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