The Moxie Movement Must Start Young!

Awhile back, one of my Facebook friends updated her status with: What do you say to your daughter when she tells you nobody wants to play with her at recess because she’s smart and not cool? Instantly, my inner ‘tween’ was fired up and I replied: Tell her to say, That’s okay. I’ll probably be your boss in 20 yrs! I’m SMART and COOL! 🙂 So that’s all well and good for the moment…but what DO we say to our daughters, nieces, little sisters, the young women in our lives who really do just want to fit in and be cool?! This Moxie Movement must start young! Here’s what you do:

Tell her she’s good enough. Even the experienced executive women I coach are sometimes paralyzed by fear. Can I do it? Can I lead? Will I succeed? Yes, yes, and hellz yes! Remind your girl often that she’s got exactly what it takes.

Inspire her to be fearless. The fear of really going for it and then being rejected is often stronger in girls (and women) because they are conditioned from birth to be likeable, while males are taught to be risk takers. And negotiators. And go-getters.

Stop her when she’s self-critical. It’s one thing to have high standards, but completely useless to beat yourself up. Women and girls tend to be overly critical of themselves. Teach your girl to do just the opposite.

Help her be honest and straightforward…nice is not always required. Our mothers taught us to be nice all the time, which is not always to our advantage. In business and in life, your girl needs to learn how to be polite, but honest. This is the number one way she will differentiate herself from the pack. It has been my personal golden ticket.

Tell her she doesn’t have to wait to be called on. Girls raise their hands and then wait for permission to speak. Successful businesswomen speak up and contribute their ideas before they’re asked to.

Help her think B.I.G. No dream is too big for a young girl to believe. (This applies to you too, Ladies!) When girls create a grand vision for their future, it will shape everything they do — in school, extracurricular activities, and socially. The bigger the vision, the greater the ultimate outcome.

Share your Moxie: Preparing our girls to be future leaders is H-U-G-E! It must start young. What would you tell your ‘tween’ self if you could go back in time and spend 2 minutes with her? Tell her in the comments below. xo. ~KG

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2 Comments

  1. So true! I was always the “weird” kid, more interested in cracking open rocks to see what was inside, making a dress out of fabric from an upholstery sample collection or devouring book after book. My mom always encouraged – and still encourages! – those traits in her kids and I credit her with my 25+ years success as an independent artist. Graham Nash was right, teach your children well!

  2. Yes, Hewitt! Your amazing Mom nurtured 3 creative geniuses (sp?)! That’s the power of encouraging the wildest, craziest dreams a kid can come up with! xo.

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