And though she be but little, she is fierce.

One of the most amazing things about being a mother is seeing your child grow and bloom into new versions of themselves. Although my daughter is only 2, everyday I see her becoming more self-aware and questioning the world around her. It’s an eye-opening experience that is both exciting and fearful at times, especially as my children grow and begin to explore the world on their own without me always at their side to protect and guide. There’s nothing I want more than to raise my daughter to become a strong, confident and self-assured woman as she navigates through the journey of life.

As parents, we are often idolized by our children and they look to us for guidance to see how to handle the world around us. With the influence of media and social media, raising confident, yet kind, empathetic children can be tough. There are so many stereotypes and influences that our children are exposed to daily that it can become a challenge.  Teaching our children a few key concepts is so important for instilling confidence from a young age. Below are some empowering ways you can help raise strong, confident girls (and boys)!

Provide Challenges

Allow your children to try new things, even if they may fail. Trying new things pushes children beyond their comfort zone and provides opportunity for growth and confidence building by learning and succeeding at new things/tasks.  In life there will be failures along the way and new experiences can be a lesson in growth and a great way to build character.

Positive Body Praise

Your children are always watching and listening to you. Do you find yourself picking your body apart in front of the mirror? Stop, or at the very least stop doing so in front of your children. Modeling positive praise and self-love is SO important for children.  Praise your daughter on how her strong legs let her run fast and jump high. Praise her about how her long arms allow her to swing from bar to bar on the monkey bars and how her curly hair is so unique to her. I find that focusing on function over aesthetics when it comes to body talk is a much more positive way to praise and takes focus away from looking a certain way. Teach your daughter to love her body and all the amazing things it is capable of. There is nobody else in the world that is like you and that is an amazing thing.

Let Her Make Choices

Give your children choices to make along the way to help build their confidence in decision making. You’ll have to adapt this based on age, but it can be something as simple as choosing from two fruits for breakfast or allowing her to decide which outfit to wear for the day.

Model Healthy Behavior

Modeling healthy behavior and self-care is so important for children. Ever heard the mantra “do as I say, not as I do”? Children learn so much from watching you and often times imitate their parents behaviors. Set your children up for a healthy lifestyle by modeling healthy lifestyle choices. Let your children watch you exercise and encourage them to join in. Go for family walks, practice push-ups together (have them jump on your back!), or play tag in the back yard. Model healthy eating habits and choose foods that nourish your body and provide healthy energy. Plant a garden together and allow your children to choose what to plant.  Not only does this set them up for a lifestyle of healthy habits, but these are great ways that you can bond and nurture your relationship. A happy, healthy body is more often a more confident body. Give them the tools needed to succeed.

Voice Emotions and Help Her Work Through Them

Pair emotions to words so that children can be more open and eloquent with how they are feeling. For younger children, when they are upset and/or frustrated, emphasize it verbally (example: “I see you are very frustrated that you can’t go outside right now”). Allow children to know that there are no bad emotions, but be sure to help them find healthy outlets and ways to work through them. The ability to process our emotions and verbalize them can be a very empowering thing.

You Can Do Anything

Let your daughter know that the world is hers! That she is capable of doing and becoming anything she wants to be. Fuel her passions and be her biggest cheerleader. While her passions may be ever-changing, let her explore and deepen her understanding to gain a greater ability to see what she really loves and enjoys.

Children love looking up to and mimicking their parents! Whether it’s our behaviors or how we dress, be mindful of your words and actions to set a happy, healthy example. Lately, my daughter has been loving matching with her mama. We are obsessed with our newest Reebok Classic kicks from DSW. DSW has all the Reebok Classic looks for the entire family for fun in the sun all spring long!

Aren’t these that absolute cutest little details? I can’t get over the little ears and the cute nose and whiskers on her sneakers. My Reebok Classics are perfect for my casual every day jean and tee look or wearing with my favorite yoga leggings!

I can’t wait to pair these up for so many fun spring mommy & me looks! Be sure to head over to DSW to pick up some of the newest styles for everyone in the family from Reebok!

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