Let's Talk!

Monday, October 15, 2012

"If I can teach my daughter one thing, it will be the love of self unconditionally!"
 ~ Asa Brown.

Last weekend, Dove celebrated its third annual Self-Esteem Weekend, a nationwide effort to help young women develop a positive relationship with beauty. If you know me then you know that inspiring girls to love themselves unconditionally is one of my greatest passions so, of course, it was only natural that I took part in this year's celebration.

As a mother of two daughters I know the importance of teaching girls how to love themselves unconditionally. Did you know that 7 out of 10 girls believe they are not good enough or do not measure up in some way, including their looks, their performance in school or their relationships with their families and friends? When I read this statistic it made me wonder just when do our girls lose their self-confidence? When do they go from little girls who do not have a care in the world filled with confidence and self-esteem to girls who are filled with self-doubt who do not love what they see when they look in the mirror? According to The National Report on the State of Self-Esteem, the self-esteem tipping point happens during the transition to teenage years. These years are the most crucial for girls; this is when they stop communication with us - the adults in their lives.

Let’s Talk” was the theme of this year’s Dove® Self-Esteem because you can help a girl develop a healthy self-image of themselves simply by having conversation.  These conversations can be in the car while you are running errands, while you are cooking dinner or watching TV together. You may not realize that each of these are special bonding moments and can inspire a girl in your life to reach her full potential. I started a conversation with my daughter while eating our weekly Friday night Chinese food take-out. I simply began by asking her "what qualities make you unique?" That one question began an easy and honest conversation. It was that simple.

So how do you begin to talk to the girl in your life about beauty, confidence and self-esteem? Here are some steps from the Dove website to help you bring your conversation:

1. Ask- The first step is to just ask a girl in your life about her relationship with beauty - don’t simply assume you know or understand because you have experienced it too.
2. Share- Rather than give her advice or tell her what to do - pick up on her answers and share some of your own experiences. 
3. Listen -Allow yourself to take in her responses to what you shared. See what else your comments may bring up for her.
4. Act- Follow your conversations with some actions.

Visit the Dove website for more tips on how to start the self-esteem conversation with a girl in your life.  http://www.dove.us/social-mission/