Everyone who is raising a daughter wishes for her to grow up to be happy, healthy, strong, capable, and intelligent. For some these simple tips are common sense. However, sometimes we may slip into the rut of the patriarchal, corporate, shallow aspect of our culture and may temporarily forget the basics of empowerment for young women. No matter, these tips demonstrate simple methods of instilling the very beginnings of honoring the divine feminine in your little girl.
- Encourage her to speak with a strong voice from the day she utters her first word. Too many of us have been programmed to be cute rather than to appear smart and powerful. Women and girls who whine, talk like babies, or speak without breathing deeply enough (producing that plastic frog-in-the-throat sound) are often not taken seriously by others or themselves.
- Allow her to make her own decisions. This will get her in to the habit of deliberating on what is right for her on her own and prepare her to be a strong-minded adult and help her to become less dependent on external influences as to what she really needs and wants throughout her life.
- Listen to what she has to say, and help her to gain the confidence to express herself with ease. The more precisely she is able to communicate with others, the more responsible she will be for the events in her life.
- Demonstrate to her how to set personal boundaries, both physical and non-physical (what she will allow others to do and say to her), and honor them. When she is confident in her ability to establish what is right and wrong for herself, she will display the confidence needed to command respect for her boundaries from others. She needs to learn from a very early age that it is completely acceptable to approve of or deny any physical or sexual advances from others. This important concept carries on into her adulthood and make her less likely to become the target of abuse.
- Let her experience the consequences of her own actions. Now use common sense, don’t let her get smashed by the truck for running into the street. But experiencing consequences that may be uncomfortable, but not harmful create lasting impressions and teach valuable lessons.
- Teach her to always look people in the eye. This helps her to be present with whomever she is interacting with, as well as to command respect from others.