I have a 5-year-old daughter who is absolutely amazing. And I want her to know it. There may be a time when she doesn’t want to hear compliments from me or doesn’t believe me. But my hope is that if I establish a foundation now, she will believe me when I tell her these things when she’s 14.
Throughout our daughters’ lives, they might feel inadequate because of what the culture says they should look like or do. But don’t let them believe the lies. Here are 10 important things to tell your daughter.
1. You are beautiful.
With all the negative things being thrown at your daughter, she needs to hear her mom say she is beautiful. When you tell your girl she’s beautiful, give examples of her beauty. And don’t always make it physical beauty. Tell her she’s beautiful because she’s kind to others or isn’t afraid to stand strong against peer pressure. Reinforcing the beauty within her gives her confidence to continue pursuing those qualities you love.
2. You are enough.
How often do you struggle with feeling like you’re not enough? Don’t let your daughter fall into that same mind trap. Reaffirm that your girl is enough. She doesn’t have to pursue some ideology from someone else. She is enough just the way she is. But she needs to hear that from you.
3. You are so talented.
Every girl has gifts and talents. I vividly remember my parents reaffirming my love for writing and telling me I had talent. Knowing they believed in my passions and talents made it that much easier to use my skills for God’s plan. And who knows? Praising those talents may direct your daughter down a career path she never considered.
4. You are worthy.
One of the most important things to tell your daughter is that she is worthy of your time and attention. We often communicate that with our actions more than our words. With depression and suicide on the rise at a younger age in our kids, our daughters need to know just how worthy and important they are. Simply looking into her eyes, holding her hands, and telling her she is worthy speaks volumes to her.
5. You are smart.
Grades are just one way of measuring intelligence. Even if she’s flunking biology, make sure you praise your daughter in areas where she excels. Problem-solving, creative thinking, asking interesting questions—there’s always something to praise, and your daughter needs to hear it. Let your voice ring louder than any voice that tells her she’s stupid.
6. Don’t let the worry get to you.
With anxiety on the rise, your sweet girl needs to know it’s OK to be concerned, but it’s not OK to be consumed by worry. We all get anxious about things, but we aren’t meant to live in a state of worry and stress. Teach her ways to handle her anxiety so she will be equipped to handle it throughout her life. Preparing her now will save a lot of heartache in the future.
7. Your uniqueness is a strength.
Tell your daughter never to sell herself short because she doesn’t fit in. It may be uncomfortable to stand out during certain times of her life, but it’s always worth it. Help her understand that despite what the world may say, women who boldly can be themselves without fear of not fitting in will live happier, healthier lives. Plus, unique girls are amazing because they don’t let others tell them how to think or feel.
8. It’s OK to cry and be emotional.
Your girl needs to know it’s OK to cry and show her emotions. However, how she handles those emotions is important. If the emotions overwhelm and control her, you’re not helping set her up for success. Gaining control of her emotions teaches her how to stay mentally healthy. And what mother doesn’t want that for her daughter?
9. Go for it!
Don’t let fears or hesitations hold your girl back. Maybe she’s worried what others will think. Help her understand that what others think isn’t important and shouldn’t hold her back from trying something new. Whether it’s rock climbing, creating a YouTube tutorial, or learning a random skill, praise and support her desire to want to try something. Your daughter needs to hear you cheer her on.
10. I love you.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but make sure your daughter actually hears those words. I tell my daughter every day that I love her. Sometimes, I list out things I love about her. Other times, I simply hold her tight and tell her I love her. Whatever the delivery, it’s important that your daughter knows without a doubt that she is loved.
What are some important things you tell your daughter?