Look inside my new book
In this blog post, I want to share a small but very important chapter from my new book Power Up Your Parenting on how to help your teenage daughter develop leadership skills. The book is full of helpful information, practical advice, checklists, and action points created to help parents raise confident, responsible, happy, and healthy young women.
Chapter: Developing Leadership Skills
“More and more teens are stepping into the spotlight to share their experiences, demand action, and promote change. However, many teens avoid leadership because they fear being in an unwelcoming spotlight. When it comes to taking charge, some would argue that girls have a harder time. They face obstacles including being seen as petty, weak, or incapable. Girls will shy away from leadership opportunities when they feel they will be ridiculed or shamed for a mistake or mishap.
They also steer away from leadership opportunities when they fear they will be seen as demanding and controlling. When a teen girl learns how to shift her perspective about leadership and step into her power with self-compassion and confidence, excitement lights her eyes. She will readily uncover opportunities to take the lead in performances, service organizations, at home, with friends, and in her classroom. The unwanted spotlight changes to a more welcomed spotlight, where she feels the positive power of her leadership.
Being a leader means being able to make decisions with confidence and assurance. To do so, girls must first understand their personal values and how their values guide their actions. When this happens, a sense of integrity develops and it becomes easier to take on leadership roles.
Teen Leader: Charley
Charley was a vibrant, friendly, and inspiring high-school senior. We met at a local volunteer event for foster youth, where she was one of the lead organizers. She was instrumental in getting several local business owners and at least a dozen high-school students to donate time and services for the event. Her strong passion for helping others was evident, as was her dedication to inspiring involvement in her peers and adults alike. In addition to helping foster youth, Charley volunteered for multiple local organizations. She led food drives, fundraising events, and took time to care for furry friends at local shelters. At school, Charley started two popular clubs, one for peer mentors and one for helping underserved youth. Charley did not let the fear of failure or self-doubt get in the way of her passion for helping others and leading others to do the same.
If your daughter has untapped leadership potential, use these ideas and questions to inspire thoughtful dialogue and encourage her to step confidently into leadership roles:
- You are the choices that you make.
Ask: How is this true for you?
- Paradigms are perceptions, how you see things, people, and experiences.
Ask: How do your perceptions shape your choices?
- Habits are powerful and important.
Ask: How do your habits impact your life at school? With friends? In sports?
- Values inform your choices.
Ask: What are your values? What values-based choices have you made?
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During the teen years, leadership can manifest in many different ways. As parents, teachers, and coaches, we can help teens develop habits and values that create a strong foundation for leadership.