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What's Your Definition of Strong?

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When I heard I was having a daughter, I was thrilled. So was my husband. The first thing that came to his mind? "We're going to have to pay for a wedding!" The first thing that came to my mind? "We're going to have do deal with middle school!" I remember middle school like it was yesterday, the way that every girls' self-esteem was tenuous at best. Even those that seemed fine and confident had wavering moments.

My kiddo is still young, not yet in middle school, so we have a few years to go before that, but teaching my daughter to be strong started from Day One and is one of my prime jobs every day, 24-7. Combatting any self-doubts, fostering her passions, building confidence, encouraging her to be strong and feel strong is a daily focus. That's why we are all here, on this hub, right? To talk about, to trade tips, to swap hints, and share all of the ways we can raise strong, confident girls.

I find it hard to tackle this without every conversation becoming a lecture...or without her tuning me out. One thing I try to do is point out all different ways she (or somebody else) can be strong, how many different descriptions are under this "strong" umbrella. Here are a few I thought of:

Being strong is being resilient -- When your child has a setback, when maybe she doesn't get cast in the school play or gets fourth in the science fair or strikes out in softball or, heckadoo, even when she's small and her tower of blocks topples over, learning how to bounce back, trying again, exploring what she can do when this happens build confidence and inner strength.

Being strong is being smart -- Teaching her to value the way her mind works and not what is happening in her social circle is vital. Encouraging her that putting that brain to work, supporting her love of reading with trips to the library, exploring a museum together, allowing her to ask questions and be curious about her world can be an amazing way to be strong.

Being strong is being independent -- Believing in her own choices, feeling okay if her idea of what is cool or fun or interesting isn't what the group thinks takes a lot of strength. Having the inner fortitude to stick to what she thinks is right, even when it may mean being by herself, and feeling okay about that is an essential skill to work on with your girls.

What other ways do you see yourself or your girl being strong? What can we add to this list?

 ÂŠiStockphoto.com/stacey_newman 


by on Jun. 1, 2012 at 12:00 AM
Replies (21-30):
Leelee1008
by Member on Jun. 3, 2012 at 9:35 AM

when times get tough plowing through. My DD is still a baby but when she gets older, I want her to know that when times get tough, keep on moving through. you have to roll with the punchs. chances are a few are going to knock you down on the way, you just have keep going, dont give up.

Madelaine
by Bronze Member on Jun. 3, 2012 at 11:13 AM

Being able to weather the good and the bad gracefully.

daerca574
by on Jun. 3, 2012 at 1:14 PM

 definately sticking to her guns. . . her peers are very influential and if she thinks it's wrong she lets them know!

Rushn311
by Cindy on Jun. 3, 2012 at 1:38 PM

My daughter is definitely independent. She is a leader 80% of the time. I wish that she'd have more confidence in herself tho. That is something that I lack too but try to never let her see.

MamaBear2cubs
by Nikki on Jun. 3, 2012 at 5:21 PM
1 mom liked this

I agree!

Quoting dusky_rose:

Being strong is not being afraid to try new things. And not being afraid that you might fail. We all make mistakes and learn from them.


DixieL
by Member on Jun. 3, 2012 at 5:23 PM

That is all being strong in her mind and I agree. I am not strong in body but I am strong in mind

TheBabyFactory4
by on Jun. 4, 2012 at 12:01 AM
Good list
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
TheBabyFactory4
by on Jun. 4, 2012 at 12:01 AM
Me too

Quoting MamaBear2cubs:

I agree!


Quoting dusky_rose:

Being strong is not being afraid to try new things. And not being afraid that you might fail. We all make mistakes and learn from them.


Posted on CafeMom Mobile
jerzeetomato
by Bronze Member on Jun. 6, 2012 at 8:21 AM

great post!  You've covered the big ones that I "preach" about regularly.  

jerzeetomato
by Bronze Member on Jun. 6, 2012 at 8:24 AM

Definitely!  Being able to own up to your faults or weaknesses and work on changing them takes strength and determination.  Also, to own up to your mistakes, accept the consequences and say "I'm sorry" if necessary.

Quoting kirbymom:

 Being strong also means being able to admit your faults and be willing to deal with them and not run from them.   To admit what type of person you are and see if you can be okay with that image and if not being able to work on yourself until you are okay with that image of yourself. 


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