Being a teenage girl is hard.
Being a teenage girl while going to school, preparing for college, and maintaing some semblance of a social life?
Priceless…and also extremely hard.
"1. You can pick your friends. Although there is a tendency in adolescence to measure ourselves (and others) by the number of friends we have, in friendship more than anything, quality trumps quantity. Encourage your daughter to create a personal list of criteria she desires most in a friendship. Remind her that if someone is not meeting her criteria in some way, she is not obligated to maintain that friendship.
In fact, she may be giving that person permission to treat her poorly if she does not either voice her objection or remove herself from the relationship. This will be great practice for assessing healthy and unhealthy relationships, friendship or otherwise, in her future. In my REALgirl® Empowerment Workshops we recommend American Girl’s ‘True Friend Test’ as an effective tool that is simple to use: http://www.aneabogue.com/moms-resources.php
2. Time management is the key to consciously creating each day and fulfilling our commitments. One of the most intimidating challenges of middle and high school can be the juggling of heavier loads of homework along with growing extra-curricular commitments and the need for a healthy social life. As daily demands increase, life can quickly start to feel overwhelming, underproductive and sort of like it is moving on auto-pilot. Teaching a girl how to be the ‘captain of her own ship’ who consciously creates each day and regularly sets and meets goals is a fundamental life tool that will serve her on many levels.
Before the school year begins, encourage your daughter to start using a day planner that also has room for a daily ‘To Do’ list. At the beginning of each day (or the night before), she can create her list, discuss with you if necessary and establish a good sense of how she needs to block her time. Developing this daily routine will help her to use her time effectively and fulfill her commitments – both of which are tools of empowerment for today and into her adult life.
3. ‘Me time’ is essential! While we are on the topic of time management, a great habit to establish as an adolescent girl and carry into womanhood is something I call, ‘ME time’. It is easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of school, friends and activities.Encouraging your daughter to take at least 30 minutes per day of time alone to disconnect from her phone and Facebook and reconnect with herself (read a book that’s not connected to school or take a bubble bath, for example) will go a long way. It is especially important that you model this one, Mom!"
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