Many girls and women have self-esteem issues due to our society’s focus on looks and beauty. I previously wrote Talking to Teen and Tween Girls About Self Esteem in conjunction with Dove’s campaign to help moms talk to their daughters about the issue. This is a follow-up with more suggestions and information.
You can find a great deal of advice by visiting the Dove Self-Esteem Wall on Dove’s Facebook Page. Anxiety about beauty begins at an early age, and can even keep girls from doing what they love. You can change that with a conversation.
You can find the expert tips and real-world advice to get started on the Self-Esteem Wall. Then, once you’ve had “the talk,” share your experience to help inspire other moms and mentors. You can share a sentence, small story, or upload your favorite photo of you and the young girl in your life from your desktop, Facebook or instagram. Here is some of the advice that I found on the wall (there is much more so make sure you visit it):
1. Culture and Media – It is important for girls to realize that the pictures that they see of models and celebrities are not real. In addition to the professional hair and makeup they receive, there is a usually a huge amount of editing, air-brushing and retouching. These looks are unattainable and girls shouldn’t feel bad about themselves for not looking like these fake images.
2. Body Image Boosters – Point out the beautiful things about people that are not traditionally beautiful. Only make positive comments about your daughters looks and try to stop them from talking negative about themselves.
3. Bad Attitude Busters – Self image is important. Girls must learn to love themselves. Beauty is both inside and out.
Dove® research shows that it is still important for us to address girls’ anxiety about looks, as there is a universal increase in beauty pressure and a decrease in girls’ confidence as they grow older. If you haven’t already downloaded the Let’s Talk Toolkit, I highly recommend doing it now. Created with Jess Weiner, Dove Global Self-Esteem Ambassador, this is a great resource for all women on starting a conversation in a simple way. Ask, Share, Listen and Act — you’ll find unintimidating ways to do make these a natural part of your talk about Self-Esteem.
Did you know that according to Dove® research only 4% of women worldwide consider themselves beautiful? Let’s try to drastically improve these numbers. Women must change their vision of what is beautiful. This will do wonders in improving their self-esteem. And what we think of ourselves is what matters most, isn’t it?
Full Disclosure: Thanks to Dove for Sponsoring Today’s Discussion
See also: Malala Day: Support Education for Girls