One of the most common struggles of raising young girls, is helping them have a positive mindset with their body image. From the media to cultural expectations, it can be difficult for them to feel confident with their appearance as they develop and grow. Girls are told from almost every form of media that looks are all that matter, but we all know this certainly isn’t true. To ensure that your daughter has a positive perspective of her body, there are a few important steps to take.
Set an Example
Girls often look to their mother’s example when it comes to how they perceive and talk about their own body after going through puberty. Set the example by avoiding negative self-talk to ensure your daughter doesn’t adopt the same habits. You also want to invest your time in hobbies or increasing your knowledge on a certain subject to ensure you don’t place a high priority on your looks. When you eat healthy and exercise, make it more about maintaining your well-being rather than your appearance. Tell your girls what you like about your body and remind them that being happy and healthy is the most important.
Talk to Professionals
When it comes to helping your daughter with her perspective on her body, consider seeking professional help when they have questions. Consult the services of a therapist or a school counselor who your daughter can feel safe talking to. Puberty talks are a great opportunity to address these issues and you can remind them it’s okay to ask questions about their body to you, your doctor, and other adults they feel safe with. It may be needed to seek facilities created for anorexia treatment and eating disorders to help guide you to more information on preventing eating disorders and what you can do if you suspect your daughter might have one.
Make it a point to communicate with your daughter when talking about her image and discuss her feelings or thoughts. Ask why she might have a negative perspective about herself and help her to shift her thinking into a positive mindset. Confront the issue head on, and offer your support to ensure that she feels safe in your home setting. You can also discuss what she appreciates about her body and the features that she likes about herself to avoid any negativity. Don’t judge or offer advice right away, just listen. Having someone they trust who can listen to them will be your greatest asset in communicating effectively.
Shift the Focus
Keep the focus off physical appearances in your home to ensure your daughter doesn’t spend as much time thinking about her body and looks. Make it a point to focus on her schooling, hobbies, or relationships to ensure she has other parts of her life that she can focus her attention on.
Although it can be difficult to help young girls with their mindsets as they mature, there are several ways to ensure that she doesn’t suffer from a lack of self-confidence. By speaking positively in her life and being a support system, you can ensure that your daughter avoids spending as much attention thinking about her looks.