Flabby girls: boost these 5 critical social-emotional muscles

Yes, a lot of you girls are too flabby, but I’m not talking about your bodies. I’m referring to vital social, emotional, and psychological muscles that girls need to build up in order to live happy, fulfilled lives. You will have to throw off the shackles of good girl conditioning and push through cultural constrains. Just like in preparing for a marathon, it will require discipline and courage. … [Read more...]

3 ways to enhance children’s social emotional learning

Social emotional learning is critical for children’s development, and yet receives insufficient attention in our schools and homes. This knowledge includes the following key life skills: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making. SEL research has documented numerous benefits: improved academic achievement, increased kindness, sharing, … [Read more...]

How to help girls bloom? Fix toxic school environments

When a flower doesn’t bloom you fix the environment in which it grows, not the flower. Alexander Den Heijer Working with girls for over 30 years has taught me that they are not messed up, hormonally driven creatures with poor self-esteem; they are fine. It’s the toxic environments where they spend their time that is the real problem. Put a girl into a safe, nurturing, nonjudgmental environment … [Read more...]

Childhood is Not a Race

Parents need a major adjustment in what they focus on. Because are kids are suffering way too much stress these days, and it will haunt them into the future. Here's why. Sophie, 14, a straight A student and captain of her 8th grade volleyball team, told me she feels like she has to be perfect at everything or she will disappoint her parents, teachers, and coaches, much less herself. "When I … [Read more...]

Would Girls Rather Receive a Punch or a Glare?

The answer to the question in the title is unequivocally a glare, by a long shot. What is interesting is that most girls in grade school and middle school have little awareness of the power of their non-verbal communications unless you point it out in a heart-to-heart conversation. I have done just that with circles of incredible young ladies at my camps, retreats, and Strong Girls Strong … [Read more...]

Girl Talk

I had the privilege of sitting down with 6 sixth grade girls recently to give them input into what we would cover with our upcoming Strong Girls Strong World Program with their class. I asked one question, and off they went. It was awesome! It reminded me of several things. Girls are hard-wired to connect, be in groups, avoid conflict and maintain social harmony, and to communicate. So it is … [Read more...]