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The Brave Girl Blog Navigating Friendship Challenges and Confidence

Survive and Thrive in Middle School is ready!

Jun 04, 2024

Today, I am thrilled to share something very close to my heart—the launch of our Survive and Thrive in Middle School Course  for both parents and daughters. But before I dive into the details, I'd like to take a moment to tell you a story about how this course came to life.

Last July, I set out to transform the guidance and strategies I’ve shared with middle school girls in my groups into something bigger—a comprehensive course. What started as a simple idea quickly turned into a passionate labor of love. But I'll be honest, this journey hasn't been without its challenges. It also became a personal battle with my own perfectionism and imposter syndrome. Every step of creating this course forced me to confront these challenges, pushing me to grow alongside the very lessons I aimed to teach.

Today, I am excited to introduce Survive and Thrive in Middle School Course designed to empower you and your daughter during a pivotal phase of her life. This course isn't...

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Get Your Tween or Teen Ready For Summer!

May 22, 2024

As summer beckons with its promise of endless possibilities, it's the perfect time to dream big and plan even bigger! This year, we're taking the summer bucket list to a new level of excitement and personal growth.

Why Create a Summer Growth Bucket List?
Summer isn't just a break from school—it's a vibrant season to explore new interests, master skills, and push the boundaries of what you think is possible. Whether your daughter wants to dive into a new book series, learn a digital skill, or start a mini-business, there's no limit to what she can achieve with a bit of imagination and a lot of inspiration.

I've created a Summer Bucket List PDF featuring six unique worksheets designed to help you and your daughter craft a summer filled with cherished memories. Drawing on my experience as a school counselor, I often faced what I call 'summer regret' when returning to school, realizing I hadn't accomplished everything I'd hoped during the break—a sentiment echoed by my...

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Guiding Your Daughter: Effective Strategies for Managing Finals with Confidence

May 08, 2024

Anxiety can build as final exams and standardized testing season approaches. It’s a critical time for our students, especially those managing ADHD. Let’s explore how we can help our daughters feel less overwhelmed and more empowered during this stressful time of year.

Navigating the educational journey with your tween or teen girl can be both rewarding and challenging, particularly when ADHD is part of the equation. This condition can affect executive functioning, making it difficult for your daughter to plan, prioritize, and execute tasks. Understanding this can help us support them better.

Instead of asking, "Have you started studying for your finals?" here are some other helpful ways to check in with your daughter that hopefully won't shut her down, especially if she procrastinates because of stress. 

When we check in, ask:

"How can I help you study for your finals?"
"Would it be helpful for me to be an accountability partner to help keep you focused and on...

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You Are More Than Enough!

Apr 30, 2024

Life can throw a lot at us. For parents, the mix includes juggling work, managing the home, and being there emotionally for our kids as they tackle their own challenges.

Our tween and teen girls are navigating the tricky waters of school life, dealing with the pressures of friendships and the constant comparisons that come with growing up.

Amidst all this, a common thread weaves through our experiences—the inner critic.

The Inner Critic is the voice that whispers doubts and insecurities, making you feel inadequate and fearful of failure.

It might tell you:

"No one likes you!"
"Why bother trying out for the team when you're not that skilled?"
"That test score was just a fluke."
"This outfit isn’t working. Why did you think it would?"
"You're just not smart enough!"
"You’re too annoying to be likable."
"You're dull; do you ever do anything exciting?"

Everyone has an inner critic, a negative voice, or what some call a self-saboteur. It acts like a frightened child,...

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Unlocking Children's Potential: Modeling Resilience and Self-Control

Mar 12, 2024

This past week has been filled with enriching experiences aimed at fostering a supportive environment for our children and students. I had the privilege of participating in various workshops and presentations emphasizing the importance of nurturing positive relationships and addressing anxiety in our young ones.

I had the honor of attending the SPACE Workshop led by Dr. Eli Lebowitz. This course provided invaluable insights into supporting parents in guiding their anxious children. It reinforced the significance of communication and instilling confidence in our children to navigate life's challenges. I am excited to apply the lessons I learned to the parents and girls that I support.

Next, I was honored to conduct Staff Development Training at Fairview Elementary via Zoom for all their amazing teachers and staff. My presentation focused on "Supporting Positive Friendships in the Classroom." It was heartening to see educators coming together to address the nuances of relational...

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Supporting Children Through Anxiety

Mar 08, 2024

One thing you may not know about me is that I love to learn.

I am surprised by my love of learning as I was not an eager student in high school, but today, I am excited to participate in the SPACE Program training with the Yale Child Study Center led by Dr. Eli Lebowitz. SPACE stands for Supportive Parenting for Anxious Childhood Emotions.

As a parent I have supported my child when they have felt anxious and I am sure you have had to support your child through their worry or anxiety as well. It can be so challenging to know what to do and if what you are doing is helping your child or making their anxiety worse.

One key insight from Dr. Eli Lebowitz is that our accommodations as parents can sometimes maintain anxiety rather than reduce it. Children are hardwired to detect threats, while parents are naturally motivated to protect their children. This dynamic can lead to a cycle of accommodation that reinforces anxiety.

The SPACE Program teaches parents how to become more supportive...

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Teen Birthday Disappointments: Friendship Affirmations!

Jan 31, 2024

 

As I celebrate another year of life, I find myself reflecting on the past, particularly a poignant memory from my 13th birthday. Turning 13 marked a significant milestone, and I couldn't wait to celebrate with my friends.

I vividly recall my 13th birthday, eagerly anticipating my first-ever sleepover party.

On that anticipated day, only one friend was able to attend my sleepover party. The rest were away on a ski trip, leaving me with a mix of embarrassment and hurt. I couldn't help but wonder why I hadn't been a part of that ski trip with them. The disappointment ran deep, and it's a feeling many of us have experienced in our lives.

Friendship disappointments can cut deep, and that experience was no exception. What I've learned as an adult is that we often personalize these situations, making them about ourselves when, in reality, they may not be.

I share this personal story not only as a reflection on my past but to acknowledge the universal struggles that girls face in...

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My Daughter Doesn't Want To Talk To Me Anymore, Why?

Jan 09, 2024

I want to address a poignant question raised by one of my Instagram followers, who expressed concerns about feeling a growing distance between her and her teenage daughter.

It's a challenge many parents face as their children navigate the tumultuous waters of adolescence.

To shed some light on this matter, I turned to Dr. Cam Caswell, an Adolescent Psychologist and Parent Coach, who provides valuable insights into why teens may withdraw from their parents.
Dr. Caswell identifies three key reasons why teens may stop sharing their lives with their parents:

1. Teens Feel a Lack of Active Listening: Teens want to be heard, not just talked at. When parents don't actively listen, it can create a barrier to communication.

2. Feeling Judged: The fear of judgment can be paralyzing for teens. If they sense criticism or disapproval, they may be hesitant to open up.

3. Parental Overreactions: Teens often navigate intense emotions and need a safe space to express themselves. If parents...

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Navigating Worry, Anxiety, and Loss of Motivation with Your Daughter

Dec 12, 2023

In our most recent Brave Girl Tribe call, part of my Life Coaching Virtual program designed for girls in 5th to 8th grade, the girls bravely opened up about their experiences with worry and anxiety. Their courage shed light on a common struggle that many of our tweens and teens face.

This time of year, we often see an increase in worry and anxiety as the demands of school increase, friendship changes and breakdowns happen, and the winter gloomies start.The Fear of Fear: Breaking the Worry Cycle

Some members of the Brave Girl Tribe opened up about fearing their own anxiety, particularly the worry of experiencing a panic attack. It's crucial to recognize that this fear can create a cycle that intensifies anxiety. In our discussions, we've emphasized that avoidance only strengthens worry.

The first step in encouraging our girls to manage their worry and anxiety is to externalize their worry by giving it a name. This helps our girls separate themselves from worry and not get down on...

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Nurturing Empowerment and Friendship: Practical Tips for Teenage Girls

Oct 14, 2023

Friendships, as beautiful and fulfilling as they can be, are not always smooth sailing. We've all encountered the stormy seas of misunderstandings, conflicts, and the inevitable ups and downs of maintaining meaningful connections.

In 2016-2017, ROX Institute's Girls Index Survey found that a staggering 76% of girls reported that they believe most girls are in competition with each other. This statistic has left a lasting impression on me and evokes a sense of sadness.

This staggering statistic reminds us of a troubling truth. While friendships hold the potential to be incredible sources of support and joy, they can also become tangled webs of competition and misunderstandings, particularly among young girls. It highlights the urgent need to equip ourselves and our daughters with the tools to foster healthier, more collaborative connections.

How can we help our girls become champions of other girls?


Helping girls become champions of other girls involves fostering a culture of...

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