Teaching Our Girls How to Love Themselves

Teaching Our Girls How to Love Themselves

Teaching Our Girls How to Love Themselves

During the month of February girls tend to look for love from others to feel appreciated, valued, and adored. In our efforts to build more strong and resilient girls we want to teach our girls how to love themselves at a very early age. Love from others is a wonderful feeling but self-love is the BEST feeling!

Self-love allows girls to appreciate themselves and the value they add to the world without the need for a cheerleading squad behind them. Self-love means knowing what they like and being comfortable in liking those things. Girls are taught and told to be happy with themselves but very seldom to we really teach girls how to love themselves and explain what that means.

Don’t think you daughter or the young girls you work with are too young to learn these lessons. The earlier you start, the stronger they’ll become!

1. Teach them to be careful what their inner voice is telling them. Sometimes girls own worse enemy is in their own mind. They tell themselves internally that they can’t do things and they’re not good enough which we know from experience leads to insecurities. This starts the cycle of needing to feel validated from someone else before you believe it in your own heart. The only way to overcome these insecurities is to hear and understand something different. We have to teach our girls how to change the channel of their minds. They need to frequently hear from you that making mistakes is okay; they are smart, beautiful, and perfect even with their flaws. This will become the voice they begin to hear in their head when they’re out on their own, because that’s the time they’ll need it most. Lesson: Train your inner voice to guide you in the positive direction of your life.

2. Teach them to say out loud, daily “I Love ME!” We need to teach our girls to wake up, go to mirror and say, “Good morning girl! You look great. You are awesome and I love you!” It’s something that I didn’t learn how to do until I was an adult and it makes you feel great even when you may not feel or look it. It’s the motivation you need to go make yourself look great even after you’ve said it. Girls have got to learn the power of their words early. They can think it but there is something about saying it that’s gets down in their spirit and make them feel it. Lesson: Speak positivity over yourself and your life.

3. Teach them to love themselves for the features they were born with, not the ones they’re lacking. Our girls are not blind. They see the same over sexualized images we do. Even on Nick, Disney, and other children’s channels girls are featured with long hair, skinny jeans, and obsessed with boys and fashion. My daughter at age six began to ask me if I would straighten her hair so it would be long and she could flip it. I knew why she was asking for the change but I told her I wouldn’t. I love her curly hair and how adorable she looks with her headbands and barrettes; after all she’s six! Our girls have so many beautiful and unique features that really make them stand out but because they are bombarded with media images that show them otherwise so they feel like they’re the minority. I literally had to take my daughter on Pinterest and show her how many cute natural styles there are for women and girls. Now she is obsessed with her natural hair! She always tells me, “Mom we have to take care of our real hair. It is long and beautiful but I don’t need to put chemicals in it or straighten it.” She’s six; it’s never too early to start the conversation. Lesson: Take care of what you have been given!

4. Teach them how to respond to negative criticism. There any many moms and mentors that work so hard to make sure their girls are exposed to positivity. We know our girls don’t operate in a bubble so teaching them how to respond to negative criticism is a great way to teach them to stand up for themselves and let others know they will not be their doormat! My daughter recently came home and told me a girl at school called her a “stupid baby” for liking Doc McStuffins and wanting to have her as the theme for her 7th birthday party. I asked my daughter “What did you say back?” She says she said, “Well my mom told me that some characters are inappropriate for young girls and I like Doc McStuffins. She helps people feel better. If you don’t want to come to my party you don’t have to!”. I was so proud of my little girl! First of all she had my voice in her head when she needed it most, she believed what she saying for herself, she wasn’t just repeating words and she told that little girl in the nicest way possible “We don’t have to like the same things and you’re negative comments will not kill my joy!”  Our girls have to understand that everyone is entitled to their opinions and what you like may not be what they like. They need to understand that either you’re going to be friends and be nice, or you shouldn’t be friends at all. They need to learn how to speak up for what they do like and let people know that we don’t have to do everything the same, everyone is different and will always be! Never hang their head in shame because where one friend has walked away, another one will follow! Lesson: Your joy is your strength, don’t let anyone take away your joy!

5. Teach them how to have a “me” day. I think we need to remember that girls are just smaller more confused versions of us. If we need a break sometimes, so do they! We love to read our favorite books, get our hair done, polish our nails, and catch up on a favorite show. Girls do to! They live in a society where they are constantly being told what to do at home, school, and church and sometimes they wish they could just have a choice or say in what gets planned. Having a day to themselves allows them to figure out what they like and have a minute to enjoy those things. It doesn’t have to be beauty pampering either because they need more substance than that. Let them write out activities they enjoy, food they enjoy, books they enjoy and create a special day just to see them smile! It shows them that it’s okay to like what they like and to learn to enjoy their own company. Lesson: You are the best company you can keep!

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What do you think? Share your voice!
  1. yolanda c says:

    This is great. I will print it and give to my parents in the office..Well done!

    Reply
  2. Jean says:

    This is a great article. I wish that I had seen it when you first posted it.

    But anyway it’s a good article and I hope that as many females read this as possible. I would.imeto see ore articles like this and in some of the articles will be information telling girls that they do not need to do any kind of sex with their boyfriends and especially tell them I to do oral sex.

    Then we need to teach them that they have a valuable resource in their mothers and their grandmothers, and to not exalt dad or husbma

    Reply
  3. mattie says:

    Im 13, and very responsible . but everyone has there breaking points … and when I was bullied last year in 7 grade it war awful! this summer so far was starting off rocky cause my parents argue and I woukd always have to be strong for my sister . this has helped me learn how to love myself no matter what my inner voice tells me this has made me stronger and better it has changed my life . thank u so much

    Reply
    • Mattie, I’m so glad to hear this article has helped you to recognize the greatness that is already inside you. Continue to love yourself and pass your learnings on to your sister!

      Reply
  4. Rhonda says:

    Thank you so much for this article. Our nonprofit, FYI Community Partnership, Inc. work with young people who have aged out of the foster care system who show are such a range of negative emotions, mostly because of the bad experiences they had growing up. I was looking for ideas for how to help one of our 18 year olds to love herself. She has a terrible attitude, feels that no one cares anything about her and is super jealous of the other girls and declares that she doesn’t like anyone because no one does anything for her. I hope we can help her change her mindset and let her know that she can be a lovable person’ as I have seen a small change in her in the month she has been with us. Again, thank you for this article and for working with out girls.

    Reply
    • Thanks Rhonda! I’m glad you found this article useful. I hope that you can use it to help the young lady in need make positive changes and push her in the right direction towards continuous self love.

      Reply
  5. welly says:

    i cant even begin to stress just how much i’m relating to this article right now

    Reply
  6. I really enjoyed your article. I am a part of a group that mentors young girls and I will be using this article to help teach self-love. Thank you so much for posting and I will credit you for sharing this information.

    Reply
  7. Jackie says:

    Is there a way to click on the session plans that are linked here?

    Reply