Rachel Simmons says in her new book, Enough As She Is, “There is something troubling stewing beneath the surface of all this (girl) success.” This brewing starts young in our daughters and can blindside us once she is in her late teen years.
My daughter is 14-years-old, so I hope I can catch her. But it is too late for many of my son’s 17-year-old friends. They are at full gallop on the hamster wheel that Simmons calls the College Application Industrial Complex. It’s dizzying and exhausting by itself, but Simmons says when dumped on top of girls who’s, “drive to achieve is fueled by brutal self-criticism and anxiety that they will fail,” we find “girls who may look exceptional on paper but are often anxious and overwhelmed in life.”
The headlines on the dangers of social media over the last few months are enough to cause us parents to lose our minds.
To make matters worse, no one is talking us off the ledge. Instead, they are piling on. At after-school events to train parents on social media, police officers counsel parents and kids that if they post certain things they can go to jail or be registered as a sex offender. Lawyers explain that if you make one wrong move on social media, that post or picture can follow you for the rest of your life, hurting your chances of getting into a college or getting hired by your dream company.
Simply put, the advice to parents is control, limit, and stalk.
Before I build a moat around my daughter, I have one big question: Why isn’t anyone teaching me (and her) how to use social media as a tool for her power? Luckily, one expert has an easy exercise to help me do just that!
28 tips may seem like a lot, however, considering more Americans fear public speaking than their own death, I believe more tips are better than less.
Public speaking is a skill, not a talent. It needs to be practiced at all ages. Avoiding public speaking only exacerbates the problem by reinforcing the fear. Besides, if you never present, you’ll never realize that you won’t actually die!
Researchers asked 1,000 American consumers to name a famous woman in tech. Only 4% could do so. And of those?…1/4 named ‘Alexa’ and ‘Siri.’
The issue might not be so much about recognition of those women who sit at the top of tech, but the more significant problem of a shortage of female leaders overall.
Forget about recalling names, what keeps me up at night is the bigger question: How can you recognize female leadership if you aren’t exposed to it? Worse, how can my daughter be one if she can’t see one?
My daughter and I talk a lot about how important it is to "use social media to become a part of something bigger than yourself rather than making yourself bigger," to quote Rachel Simmons, author of Enough As She Is.
She understands she should avoid the 'I'm an object to be admired' posts.
After seeing her friend’s Instagram post, I didn’t want to talk about using social media responsibly. I wanted to talk about body positivity. Social media can be enemy number one in helping your daughter keep a healthy self-view. Especially when it comes to her friends.
Am I the lone voice in my daughter’s ears telling her it’s okay if she doesn’t want to pursue an interest in STEM?
Out here in sunny, tech-obsessed California, girls’ leadership often equals STEM (Science. Technology. Engineering. Math). Many parents look to STEM as the singular solution to the gnarly and complex problem of getting their girls into leadership positions, and this view always seemed limiting to me.
Thankfully, two new studies run by Google show that in order to be successful in technology you don't need to be a technologist.
The Girls Leadership Book Club is, in my opinion, the go-to resource for finding empowering, age-appropriate reads for your girls. I highly recommend you join their Facebook group to get their fall 2018-2019 school year recommendations when they come out.
This list is from their recommendations for the last school year by age group. My daughter has read several on their middle school list and loved them. I’m sure you will too.
Who knows, maybe you’ll be inspired to form a book club of your own!