Our daughters today are living in a complex time where they are straddling 2 words. Today’s girls are being taught to stand up and share their truths loud and proud, but they’ve also learned the language of their mothers- the language of discounting the value of what they have to say.
How many times have you read an email from, or had a conversation with a woman who has said : ” I just wanted to check and see if ….” “You may not like this idea, but…?” or “This might may sound dumb, but what do you think about…?” or even the similar, “Do you mind if I say something?” We need to be able to stand up for ourselves and claim our ideas and thoughts without apologizing. It’s something that I have struggled with myself and have made a big change after rereading a few emails that all started with an apology or a qualifier. I do not have to apologize or justify my opinions or beliefs- I have just as much right to them as anyone else. Since I noticed this trend with myself, I wanted to be sure to change and set a good example for my own daughter. But how do I speak my mind while still being considerate? It’s by sharing my strength in words, but kindly. Empowerment coach, speaker, talk and radio host Gina Devee, author of “The Audacity to be A Queen” said that it’s important to make sure you’re modeling direct, respectful and empowered communication around your sons and daughters. But HOW? By owning what you say, and saying exactly what you want and mean. Gina says:
“A woman can stand in her brilliance and say, “I have a great idea I’d like to share with you.” At restaurants: “I’d like the wedge salad, chopped and tossed, please.” At the salon: “Wow! You’re amazing! It’s not exactly what I had in mind, could we work on the bangs a little bit?” And when speaking to your partner: “Hey, did you have your heart set on sushi tonight? I’m really in the mood to stay in and order Chinese instead.”
We have been taught that we defer to others in the interest of being nice, but one thing that is very important to learn and to teach our children is that when we learn to treat people with kindness, as Harry Styles says, it’s imperative that you start with yourself. Respecting your own ideas and setting your own boundaries and the validity of them is one of the first lessons we should teach them. Gina says one crucial lesson to teach your children is this:
“You get to decide for yourself what you value, and you have the full power to create that in your life. It takes clarity, dedication, and being unapologetic about living your truth no matter what anyone else thinks.”
As a mother, it’s important for you to model having intact non-negotiable and boundaries that support you in being at your best. That includes speaking in your true voice with no apology.