How to Be a Positive Role Model to Teenage Girls
It's not easy being a teenager, and it may be even harder if you're female.
Teen girls are highly impressionable, and too often they receive negative messages about themselves from peers, the media – even their parents.
To be a positive role model for teenage girls, it's important to lead by example, showing young women that success, self-confidence and happiness are attainable – no matter who you are, where you come from or what you look like on the outside.
Eating disorder specialists and psychologists agree that the teen years can be the most formative for young women to learn a positive self-image. Unfortunately, it is also usually the time when they are subjected to peer pressure, unrealistic standards about body image or other pressures that have to do with trying to fit in. Help young women by building up their sense of confidence. Give compliments. Show encouragement. Praise success. When the way you talk to a young woman is positive and and supportive, she will learn to internalize these messages and adopt them as her own.
Now more than ever women are rising to the top as corporate executives, CEOs and other leaders in the work place. Part of being a positive role model is encouraging teen girls to develop their talents, pursue education and become self-supporting through a career or vocation that will fulfill them. Help expose your teen to internship programs, volunteer opportunities or other experiences that will support her professional growth as well as the development of her skills and talents.
Being a positive role model for teen girls also involves teaching them how to become independent. Help them learn how to think for themselves, make rational decisions and judge situations calmly. When a young woman can develop a strong inner compass, it won't matter where she goes in life – she'll always be able to find her way.
Lead by example
If you want your teen to have a positive role model, the best way is to lead by example. When young women have a person to admire, they are more likely to succeed, research shows.
"Teens who have someone to look up to – someone they know personally – feel better about themselves, perform better in school, and are less likely to smoke or do drugs," said Gary D. Vogin, MD, contributing expert for WebMD.
Showcase healthy habits when it comes to drinking, discourage drug use, and behave in the way that you would want your teen to behave as an adult. With a positive mentor, teen girls can do better in school, have more fulfilling social relationships and grow up to be happy, well-functioning adults.
Source: Web MD