erin tarr imperfectly empowered podcast with ahna fulmer

8 Tips For Raising Confident Teen Girls

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Confidence coach and mom of 3 girls, Erin Tarr shares expert advice every parent needs to raise confident teen girls and empower them to overcome self-doubt and insecurity.

Join us to discover how Erin’s F.I.E.R.C.E.S.T. framework and 1:1 coaching program will empower your teen girl to change the world!

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  • What it means to re-parent as parents. 
  • Erin’s tips to a healthy mompreneur mindset.
  • How to effectively apply the parenting concept of choice and autonomy.
  • The #1 struggle teen girls report and how you can help.
  • How to promote self-improvement without overwhelm.
  • Erin’s 7-step empowerment formula.
  • Practical strategies to improving the mother-daughter relationship.


Confidence coach and mom of 3 girls, Erin Tarr shares expert advice every parent needs to raise confident teen girls and empower them to overcome self-doubt and insecurity.
Join us to discover how Erin's F.I.E.R.C.E.S.T. framework and 1:1 coaching program will empower your teen girl to change the world!


Erin Tarr is a speaker, confidence Coach and founder of Be the Benchmark, a program dedicated to coaching teen and tween girls to change from living self-conscious to self-confident.  A Central Illinois Business Magazine 40 Under 40 recipient and sought after keynote speaker, thousands of teenage girls have been empowered to learn the fierce habits they need to live with confidence including areas such as success habits, social media usage, mental health, friendships and family relationships.  Erin lives in the cornfields of Illinois with her husband, Adam, and their own 3 fierce girls.

Confidence coach and mom of 3 girls, Erin Tarr shares expert advice every parent needs to raise confident teen girls and empower them to overcome self-doubt and insecurity.


Ahna Fulmer Signature

When something negative happens at school or in their lives, they need five positive feedback things to recalibrate how they think of themselves and how they want to move forward. I’m making sure that the positive interactions that we have outweigh the negative five to one. Welcome to the M perfectly empowered podcast with a leading DIY lifestyle blogger on.
We’re women are inspired with authentic stories and practical strategies to reclaim their hearts and homes by empowering transformation. One imperfect day at a time. Hello, and welcome to another episode of the imperfectly empowered podcast. I am your host on a film and today it is my honor to introduce you to air.
Tar Aaron. Tara is a speaker confidence coach and founder of be the benchmark, a program dedicated to coaching teen and tween girls to change from living self-conscious to self-confident. She is a central Illinois business magazine, 40 under 40 recipient, and a sought after keynote speaker. Thousands of teenage girls have been empowered by Aaron to learn the fierce habits.
They need to live with confidence, including areas such as success habits, social media usage, mental health, friendships, and family relationships. Aaron lives in the cornfields of Illinois with her husband, Adam and their own three fierce girls. Welcome my friend and the woman who I will have on speed dial in the next three years.
Aaron Tara. Aaron welcome to the imperfectly empowered podcast. It is so fun to have you here. I have to tell a little story about Erin. We met at a conference and we sat at the same round table and we were all introducing our businesses. What we did, what our passions were. And we got to Erin and Erin basically says, I hang out with teen and tween girls all day.
And I mean, maybe I’m the only one, but I’m thinking like either this woman’s not fully there or she is on drugs or because let’s be completely honest, there are not too many people who would choose with a smile and with joy to single out teen and tween girls to hang out with. And as Aaron, as I got to know you more throughout the conference, your passion for this particular demographic is so clear.
And I can’t wait for. My audience to hear more of your heart and learn from you, not to mention people who have followed you and to maybe hear your story some more. So I have to ask, did your, this confidence passion that you have for instilling confidence in young girls, was this something that you could relate to growing up and it kind of came out of your own sense of confidence and how you were raised, or was it more transpired from hard lessons learned as, can you share a little bit about how the earlier years brought you to where you are today?
Yeah, I was definitely the opposite. It was definitely the second one. Okay. Recognizing how difficult it is to be a teen and tween girl. It is very hard to be a parent of 18, a tween girl, but that is second to how hard it is to be a teen or tween girl. And we forget that when we’re raising them on the other end, but what really happened, I’d always been very passionate about education, about personal development, about really just leadership is kind of how I initially looked at it and I loved all of this.
I was in the education world. I was a leader in a school. I was helping with parents and students and teachers and administration. And I kind of had my hands in all of that, which was amazing. And then I had my own child and it was a girl and everything changed. Everything shifted because all of a sudden it went from being this theoretical, what we should do in the classroom and what we should do as parents and how to support kids to like, oh my goodness, I have a real live living daughter.
In my hands and she’s going to go through all the obstacles, all the pain, all the self doubt, all the negative, self-talk all the anxiety, all of the, not feeling worthy that I’ve been through my whole life, that every woman I’ve ever talked to or coached or led has been through their entire life until they put a stake in the sand and change it.
And I’m like, I don’t want that for her. I want for her to have all the tools that I’m learning now as a middle aged woman, when she’s 8, 13, 15, 18 28. I want her to have those then. So she can leverage those in the ways that make sense at that age. Not trying to like grow her up faster, anything like that, but just give her the tools to pursue.
Who she’s meant to be with confidence and not let those things hold her back or trip her up, or what have you. And then I went on to have two more daughters. So I felt like that was just a further confirmation that like, yes, you are on the right track. This is what you should do. You guys are rocking the X chromosome over there for lots of reasons that what’s happening.
It’s interesting that you say that this especially came to the forefront when you had a daughter, because I’m sure there’s a lot of other women that can resonate with this. It was interesting when I got pregnant, my oldest is a girl as well, and I understand what you’re saying in the sense that as soon as I realized that I’m raising a mini me in a sense, even though our personalities may be different, it really made me think back through my own childhood and my relationship with my mom.
And it does make you really contemplate. Okay. What were things that I really liked about. Relationship, what were things that I would do differently. And I’m wondering, as you were in that moment, you’re understanding you’re about to have a daughter. Did you think back through things like that, and as you were thinking through them, tell me a little bit about kind of early, early on in the process before you even founded be the benchmark.
What were things that came to mind? Like, I love that I was raised to think this way, or I would like to do this a little differently with my daughter. Tell me about some of those thoughts. Yes, for me, a lot of it was always, I’m a future oriented person, like on StrengthsFinders and different things like that.
I’m always looking for the vision of the future. And for me, it really came down to, I want a relationship with my daughter when it came daughters. Right. Where they want to spend time with me when they don’t have to. And then it was all about working backwards. Like what did my parents do that I really liked?
And what did they do that made me not so attached in other ways. And I started to deconstruct, I’m a very like detail oriented person. So I started to deconstruct everything. Like, I love that my mom made all of the costumes for our ballet studio. We were at the ballet studio 3, 4, 5 nights a week. And it was an hour away from where we lived and basically our family’s life revolved around that.
And on the one hand, I love that she was able to give that and use her talents and all of that. On the other hand, I started to think, do I want my family to have one thing that. Totally rules our lives. And I also started to think that I wonder if that actually made her happy and brought her joy. Did she do that?
Because she was sacrificing part of herself for what she thought we wanted. You know what I mean? And so it’s not necessarily just these one moments, but it’s almost like a dissection of not just who I’m raising her to be, but who I am becoming as I’m raising her and who do I want to be in 20 ish years when she’s left my home and she’s out on her own how I conduct myself now both impact our relationship as well as impact my relationship with myself and my husband for that matter.
I think that dynamic is so hard. It’s the sense of as a mom. You need to continue to grow yourself, right? We want to have some independent dreams aspirations, because I’ve been told many times by women, much wiser than me, make sure that you are investing in things that you love because one day your kids will leave.
And if your entire life is just about your kids, you will eventually feel lost. Well, what is my purpose now? And that was such good advice that I got some time ago. On the flip side, we can take that too far. And I contend to probably take it more far to this extreme that we become all about ourselves and our own goals and pursuits, especially for women like you and I preneurs at heart and we love the work.
We love the busy-ness. And then sometimes it’s like, we lose that relational aspect where at the end of the day, our kids don’t need us to be successful. Our kids don’t need us to be CEOs. They need us to be parents. Absolutely. And so like living in that balance is so difficult and I am very excited to learn from you and all of your expertise.
Let’s just throw that out there. Did you grow up with sisters? Were there other, okay. I was one of two girls. I was the middle of three girls, so I was the middle. So I have an older sister and a younger sister, so I’ve kind of replicated my family. And that has been a very interesting thing to think about.
But yeah, I have said to other entrepreneurial women, especially when I was working a full-time job and had my business and they were all still very young, which now they’re six, 11 and 13. Like how old are my children, but when they were, but when they were all under the age of 10 and I was doing all of this, I said to several entrepreneurial friends.
If my kids were not a part of what I was doing, like if I was trying to empower young girls and I had sons, or if I was only working with college age girls and my kids were under 10 or whatever, if it didn’t mesh with also where I was in life, I don’t know that I would have been able to stick with it the way that I have, because I did need them to be a part of what I was doing.
And you see this in the entrepreneurial world, this is why people hire their kids to be a part of their business so that they can help balance some of that role and those types of things. So, and I think it could be done. I mean, even if someone’s not an entrepreneur, I see women who just take on projects.
With the PTA or with church or with something else that because they’re filling their own bucket and the balance gets out of whack. Sometimes we forget where our priorities and our values are. And most women I talk to that are moms of my clients. They have values. Obviously we all have values, but they’ve never really sat down and talked about what those are and how those informed the choices that we make with our time and our energy.
And I think that if there was one thing that I would recommend that all parents do is really sit down and think about that, because that gives us a filter. So when the holidays come around and we feel like everybody’s pulling us every, which way to volunteer on this and do that and make this and show up here, if we have a set of values and we’re like, okay, how does this line up with the values that we have for our family that we’re instilling in our kiddos?
How do they even know if this is what we were supposed to talk about? But this is the tangent we went on. So there, we also tangents, I’m all about tangents. I’m like the queen of tangents. So I love that. And I would love to unpack that some more, a little bit later is just this concept of it’s dynamic.
It’s not just focusing on the teen tween girls. It is how to maximize that relationship as a parent is so important and. To highlight that more, but let’s talk a little bit about, so even before you founded the benchmark, not only did you come from a sister of all girls, obviously you’re a woman yourself.
You’ve been there, done that you’ve had the years you’ve watched your sisters go through the years, but you were also the head of a private school. So you also had the unique professional experience watching many, many teen and tween girls. Were there certain elements to that experience from a professional standpoint that especially highlighted the need in your mind for a teen girl coaching program, how did that professional experience shape the way that you coach.
Definitely. It was so unique too, because this private school was literally birth through eighth grade. So I got to see many of these girls navigate, but I really started to get a bird’s eye view of them when they were in kindergarten, because I worked in the primary middle school, but watching them develop and their social relationships and their relationships with their parents and seeing what worked and what didn’t and those types of things, but really recognizing that critical age, which this is textbook, but that critical age, right between the ages of 11 and 13, where.
They start to peer reference. They start to really look inward and doubt themselves. They really start to think negative thoughts about themselves that I hear from eight year old moms all the time. And I saw this they’re out in the school. Oh my gosh. My kid is so ferrous. They’re not going to have any problems with self-esteem or this, that, or the other.
And I would watch it happen in real time. Watch these girls struggle with stress, anxiety, depression, and not in this. We need to be hospitalized form, but in this just everyday, like putting you right back in there for when I was a teen girl putting me right back in there recognizing like, oh, I remember feeling that way.
I also remember masking to my parents so that they would think that everything was okay and people not knowing what was going on internally with me and all of these types of things. So I’m like, these girls need another cheerleader in their corner. They need someone that they know they can go to. Who’s not giving them grades.
Who’s not telling them to pick up their socks who is not judging them for anything. They say who’s confidential, but also wiser than their friends who they tend to want to go to. They want to go to girls that are their age, which is great for them to have those bonds. But you also need a little wisdom in there and you need someone speaking into them that you trust.
Right. We’ll also give them good advice. So, yeah, it was huge. So you said 11 to 13, do you think that. This is becoming younger now because my daughter’s almost nine. And if I’m being honest, I think some of those thoughts are already present. And what’s an interesting thing to note. And I think this is important is something that I’ve had to learn is that the nature and nurture conversation is real.
It’s a real thing. And it’s fascinating because from my experience, I inherently operate more out of a place of confidence and insecurity, and that has its own issues, but my mom is open and very honest about the fact that was not her. I was natured more like my dad and my mom was admittedly much more insecure and it wasn’t like the bold let’s go for it.
Like the fierce that you’re describing, she was incredibly talented at other things and taught me like she was very level headed. That’s where I got many wonderful traits from her that I was nurtured into as well. But where I’m going with that is, I think what’s also interesting is you can be a confident woman.
And raise your daughter to be confident, but she may be natured differently and may actually have those thoughts that maybe you didn’t struggle with as much and vice versa and vice versa is also a conversation as well. But I guess where I’m going with that is how do you encourage moms to recognize some of those differences, even when it is happening earlier and to help highlight that need for recognition without feeding it as well.
It’s like you don’t wanna feed the drama. Absolutely. It’s such about mindful parenting, intentional parenting and parenting the kids. We have not the kids we think we want or thought we would have had, or all of those types of things, recognizing all those individual traits. And honestly, a lot of that I think comes back to recognizing how unique we are.
So I’m a huge fan. All the things, personality tests, you name it any Agram MTBI Myers, which is Myers-Briggs Colby, a strengths finders. I love finding out about how I’m wired because every time I do it, right, it reminds me, I am not exactly like anyone else. Neither are my children. Neither is my spouse.
Neither are the people that I work with. And so there’s no one size fits all. This is how we do this. Whether it’s parenting or marriage or leadership in an employee situation or entrepreneurship, there are nuances to how we do everything. And the more we recognize that about ourselves, because how we view ourselves as how we view the world.
So when we are able to view our uniqueness and our idiosyncrasies good or bad, however, we want to look at them. We’re then able to view that in other people and then be able to nurture them in ways that matter. And we also have to recognize with our. What it is. We are citizens of this world where they have TV and siblings and magazines and pot.
I mean, I don’t know if your kids listen to podcasts, but they have other adults talking into their lives. They have school. They have, regardless of, I mean, even my friends who homeschool their children, right. There are still other voices speaking into their life that are influencing how they view themselves and how they view the world.
And that’s just reality. Like, it’s actually a really cool blessing if you think about it, but it makes our job harder. Sometimes if we are really trying to build them up, if we take the time to listen to our kids and hear what they’re dealing with on a daily basis, sometimes it’s like, whoa, I’ve got a lot of work to do to counteract that one negative situation that really impacted them.
How do I do that? Yeah. When you were in that leadership position in a private school, would you say that was when you especially saw the need for improving the dynamic between parents and kids? Is that primarily what came out of that position? That was a huge part of it. Yes, because we are adults. We have so much going on.
The hardest part of parenting is reparenting ourselves, regardless of how great our parents did, regardless of how amazing they were, how hard they tried or what have you. We have more psychological studies. Now we have more trauma informed, understanding, all sorts of data and things that will help us understand, like regardless of how great our upbringing.
There are probably things that happen to us or that we experienced in that time that we haven’t dealt with properly. And we’re either going to pass on to our kids or we’re going to figure out how to deal with them so that we can help our kids overcome whatever that is. And I talk about trauma, big T trauma.
There’s obviously like horrible things that happen, right. Or little T trauma, which is literally things that happened to you that you cognitively and behaviorally can’t deal with in that moment. You know, so something that would be traumatic for a six year old might not be traumatic for a 13 year old because they’ve developed to a point where they can deal with it.
And I’m talking again about little T trauma when I talk about that. So that’s a whole nother situation, but it’s so important for parents to recognize that we’re only going to pass on our own issues. Unless we put a stake in this hand and say like, this is something that I want to make sure my kids have a different experience with.
So there’s so many different accomplishments that you’ve had over the years, which I love, especially the fact that it has to do. A demographic that most of us are like, oh my gosh, is my child passed the stage yet? And Aaron’s like, oh, I want to live in this state to me. I pull, I have them all here. I’ve only pizza.
I love that. And I love your hurt. It’s truly inspiring. I know you talked to your girls about habits that will promote success in their lives, creating daily success. And we’ll dive into some of that expertise in the second half, but I would love to know. So one of my favorite questions to ask us, if you could sum up the key to unlocking success in our lives in one word, what would it be in one word it’s never actually one word, but you know what I mean?
I had to say one word. I would say choice. Usually I say, choose your thoughts because everything starts in our minds, whether it’s our conscious or subconscious, our minds are amazing. They’re there to protect us, but we also have. Always, and this is not in any way to diminish any difficulty that anyone is ever going through difficulty hard circumstances, bad things, our reality.
And I never want to gloss over as though that’s not the reality, but yet we always have choice. And if we could help our kiddos understand that if we could support their understanding of that from an early age and how powerful would they be? Because how often do you hear adults say like, well, I can’t, or that won’t work because, or we’re not going to be able to, or we cut our choices off at the knees constantly.
But if we could give our kids, if we could expand their minds from a very early age and letting them know in every situation, you always have a choice and giving them the power to make those choices and the confidence to make those choices. To speak up when they see something that’s not right to walk away when they’re not being treated the way that they need to be treated, to be the bigger person when that’s what the situation requires, whatever it is now, what, what would you say?
Because the interesting thing about choice and parenting is how much freedom do you give your child the choice to make a bad choice? Because this is, I think this is one of the challenges as a parent, but I have seen already in my own children and mine are almost nine, seven and four. And it’s interesting because even at a young age, one of my children simply had to make the bad choice.
It was just part of it. You can say a million times don’t touch the candle. Flame, don’t touch it. It’s going to burn you. And the finger would get closer and closer. And one of my children. Was like, oh, this is getting hotter. I’m not going to touch it. Then another one of my children had to touch it. My word was not enough.
My experience was not enough. It had to actually be touched and the pain had to happen in order for the lesson to be learned. How do you encourage parents with this concept of choice? Cause I love that as an answer and I think it is so important to understand that choice goes two ways. We want to empower them to choose well, but then sometimes there’s also benefit in allowing them to choose poorly.
But how do you balance that? At what point do you step in and be like, you will die? I know. I mean, I say this on a regular basis that. Everyone has to learn for themselves. Like, so even when I’m mentoring older girls and we will talk through, what are the things that we do is we talk through, okay, you’re in this situation, here’s three possible paths you could take.
And based on how we talked about it, I think, you know, which one I think is the best path, but whatever. And I would say probably 90% of the time, they don’t take my advice the first time they have to learn for themselves. And I think that a lot of kids are wired that way as well. I think the best thing that we can do depending on the age is give them as much information as possible.
Say in this situation for my kids, it was not usually a dangerous situation, but it was like, you have the choice to put on your shoes within the next three minutes, or I will put you in the car without them on, I will strap you in and I will put them on you. Those are your choices. I know you like to be in control.
So I’m going to give you the option of controlling that situation. But if you don’t, then I will have to take control at some point. And I think when we do it right from a young age and continue to give that. We get to let out a little more string or a little more rope. You know what I mean? As they get older, the interesting thing about the science behind this is that teens are literally, their minds are wired for risk-taking.
So if you already know you have a kiddo that needs to like push the envelope, there has to be. And I always look at five to one is like a huge ratio in my mind when we are giving them that freedom. You show me five times that you are responsible enough for this freedom, and I will give it to you. But if that doesn’t pan out, whether or not it’s like, you’re literally incapable of those five times.
Well, then we know you’re not ready for this responsibility over here, whatever that is, whether it’s driving a car or having friends in our car or staying out to a certain time or whatever it is, giving them just enough rope to let them know. Like I do trust you. This is an example that I use, which is not exactly in the risk taking zone, but.
I don’t have pets. I don’t think I’ll ever have pets. I got enough craziness in my life. I don’t make animals here, but my kids, especially my two youngest have said on a regular basis that they want a dog. Yeah. And I will literally use this as an example with my clients. I’m like, if my kids actually wanted a dog, they could have a dog.
Like, no matter how much, I don’t want a dog. If they really wanted a dog. They know what they would need to do and what our house would need to look like and how our lives would need to flow for them to earn the responsibility of having a dog that I don’t want in my house. And yet I would welcome a dog in my house if they didn’t, the things that they knew would be necessary to get an animal to live here because I’m not anti pet.
Like I think dogs are adorable. I think cats are a miracle of God for us to have a dog in here like this, you have to be parted, but for, but I would count like if your kid was one of my clients, I would tell them, I’m like, I guarantee you, I could coach you to convincing your parents to get you a dog, because there’s always that.
Right. There’s always a way, but most people don’t want to do what it takes to get to the thing that they say that they want, especially kids. And so it says, I mean, it’s kind of a different thing than the whole risk taking, but at the same time, it’s how do I give my kid enough responsibility and enough information that they can make a wise choice?
And then if they don’t make a wise choice, that’s okay. Because hopefully it won’t be death at that point. Hopefully we’re doing it enough and scaffolding and hopefully we’re scaffolding. Moments over the course of their life. So when it does come to driving a car, I mean, thinking about going on spring, break in college, you know what I mean?
Or even just going to college, like there are going to be big decisions that they need to make. And the idea is that we will have scaffold in the understanding of here’s the responsibility that you need to show in order for this to happen and for you to be able to make the streets. And they’re still going make that.
Right. Yeah, absolutely. And I’m hearing too, I love the five to one imagery. And I think one of the things that I have seen as so important is in those five moments, the key is apparent. They’re not like totally flying solo in these moments. And sometimes it’s easy for me to get so caught up in my own work and what I’m doing, that they are going through one of these moments and I need to be present.
I may not be like the helicopter mom or the there’s so many terminology, whatever, whatever kind of
I don’t need to be right on top of them. But I think for me, it’s been important to recognize that it’s in these moments, I’m empowering them with the ability to choose with the ability to prove themselves in a sense, but I need to be involved. Like these five moments are not okay by, on an island. Yeah, no, definitely having conversations through each of these moments and you’re actively involved.
And that’s what I was gonna say. I feel like that’s where somebody, like you comes in to help us walk through our kids in these moments so that they can get to that one. I love the five to one I’m like as if the fact one fact what, and that was the same thing. Like when something negative happens at school or in their lives, they need five.
Positive feedback things to recalibrate how they think of themselves and how they want to move forward. When I have a negative interaction with my kids, because we all have negative interactions with people, I am really cognizant of that five to one, like how can I make sure that I’m flipping that script and making sure that the positive interactions that we have and that our family has together.
Outweigh the negative five to one. That’s really, I mean, I’m constantly thinking of it in that way. So before we go on a quick break here, one of the questions I love to ask is you’ve already achieved so much in your life, but what is one goal you hope to yet achieve in your lifetime could be personal or professional, any goal?
We’re all about goals here. The next thing that I’m really working on is a children’s illustrated book about my social sweet shop, helping girls specifically, but all children and even adults understand. That there are different types of friendship and how those flow and how we think about our friendships is going to inform, because the biggest thing that I see happening with teen and tween girls is they meet somebody.
They connect, whether it’s a romantic relationship or otherwise they spill their life to this person. They’re their best friend’s mom. You don’t understand this. Person’s amazing. And then three weeks later that person’s gone and we’re left to pick up the pieces. And so really helping them to understand like, okay, where does that person actually fit in our social sweet shop?
And what does that mean about how we should be interacting with them and what we need to do and what their responsibility is and how they can move to maybe be a more important person in our life or not those types of things. So the social sweet shop, it’s going to be a children’s book though, because love it.
It’s all about like cake and chocolate covered pretzels and jelly beans and all these things. So it’s a very visual sense of helping them understand their social lives. So sweet, early and figuratively. My goal is to own an island errands is to change your daughter’s life. So. I mean, if I sell enough books that I can buy an island, we can share I’m in.
I’m totally. And I absolutely love that. Go and listen, when you publish that book, we’ll bring you back on here because I will definitely want to share that we’re going to take a quick break. When we come back, stay tuned for a speed round of this or that with Aaron, we’re going to get to know her a little bit better, and we’re going to hear her expert advice on helping our teen and tween girls live with more confidence.
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Perfectly empowered journal tab to sign up for a free issue of the imperfectly empowered journal. Today, we are back here with Erin tar. We’re going to do a quick speed round. Aaron, there’s going to be two options, this or that. Don’t think about it too hard. Number one, cake or pie cake. Hundred percent.
Ooh, you were the first one to say cake so far. Yeah, really? Oh my God. I have to. Now I have to ask what’s your favorite? So in the social sweet shop, double chocolate cake is your Primo friends. And the reason it’s like the cake is double-checking as chocolate. Yeah. It’s like, it’s a dark chocolate. Hey, it gets got layers, like multiple layers with chocolate icing.
It is all chocolate. So my mouth just started watering. Oh my gosh. Do you have a recipe for this double chocolate cake? By the way? I do. I do you really do it involves me. Manet’s that doesn’t shock me. I put Greek yogurt and like everything. Cause it’s delicious, which Manny’s similar. Yeah. I mean, it’s just oil.
That’s a side then me, this recipe, pasta or bread, bread card, game or board game, board game. Do you have a favorite? I love all board games. Our basement is full of board games. I love it. I mean, ours, we have boxes and boxes of games. My favorite game last night, we were playing Disney three D something where it’s like a really long board and you have these like little Mickey years and you’ll pull a card and you have to find like all the buckets that are on like this huge board or all that, you have a timer and yeah, it’s a really fun Christmas idea.
And it’s great because everybody can play it all the ages. Yeah. Oh, that is a good point. I love that. What’s it called again for listeners? I want to say it’s called Disney 3d or something along those lines. It’s all about three D it’s like a, I spotted like a spotted game it or whatever. You can Google that.
If you have a bunch of kids, Disney, 3d dog or cat, we just talked to this. I mean, I would probably be more likely to get a dog if you had to get, I mean, if I had to get something yeah, yeah. Fall or spring. Ooh. Spring. Taylor swift or Demi Lovato. Taylor swift Taylor. Okay. What’s your favorite Taylor swift song?
What’s the one where she’s talking about in the backseat of my car. That sounds far
girls’ clothes, urea nobody’s like about not having a song or something. Right? Like our song is the
so yeah, that one. Exactly. But I don’t listen to a lot of pop music, so I just tailor it to the radio. Yeah. I love it. Okay. Also a very heated question here. Toilet paper roll over or under it’s a most of the time. I don’t care, but I have been paying attention recently and doing, oh, you’re nice mom. Okay. I know because I saw a meme that was like, beard is okay, but mullet isn’t it.
So while I have literally never cared some reason that meme stuck with me and I’m like, okay, Beard’s only in this house now. Feared or mullet. Oh my gosh, man. I was passionate about it before it needs to be over. But now that unders being associated with a mullet, it’s like, I think this is what happened to me.
Yes, exactly. Black and white. Now there’s no middle ground. All right. Early bird or night owl. Neither. I get eight to 10 hours. I get eight to 10 hours of sleep. Every night I go to bed around 10 30 and I wake up around 6 30, 7, so eight and a half hours of sleep, which I don’t consider either one. I mean, that’s not staying up very late and that’s not getting up very early.
So my framework, which we’ll talk about a little bit is the fiercest framework. And the S at the end is about sleep habits and how that is foundational to our health. And the earlier we can learn that, especially as our brains are developing for the age of 25, the better off we’re going to be a lifelong.
So I preach it because I do it. So sleep habits, I’m excited. I’m excited for this highly a hundred percent agree with you. Alright. Pool or hot tub pool. Okay. Last question. Candy or popcorn? Popcorn. Popcorn. Yeah, it’s really funny when I ask this, like at the movies, candy or popcorn, and people say candy, everybody has, there is one candy that you get at the movies.
Like it’s your thing. Yeah. Interesting. I’m just not a CA yeah. I’m just not a buy food at the movies person, period. Cause you have to like mortgage your house. Like it’s going to take that second loan just to pick bags, put a water bottle. I actually, I. I know, so true. So you have went to the movies. Wait, say that again?
Back when we went to the movies switch. Yeah, for real. When’s the last time that happened. Yeah, that is so true. It’s been a very long time. So you’ve coached several thousand girls now through your program and impacted thousands more in your experience. I’m really curious to hear what is the most common problem or struggle that you have heard voiced from these girls?
This is really hard to boil down to one word, but is there a consistent theme that you could sum up in a word that you have heard voiced over the years from this demographic young girls it’s pressure. It’s pressure. And sometimes it’s academic pressure. Sometimes it’s parental pressure, sometimes their own inner sense of pressure.
Sometimes it’s peer pressure. And sometimes it fluctuates between all of those things within an hour. There’s so much going on inside of them. Yeah. And they fear that they are insane. And so they don’t tell others until it bursts until it bursts. And then we’re like, and. What did we do? We don’t know how to deal with this.
Okay. So the word pressure, this is resonating so much with me because I think of my daughter, who’s almost nine. So if we talk any grants for a second, I am 98%, three and 98% eight. I am super, super high in both. You are so hard to live with. Oh, my husband is not here right now, but he’s gay man, somewhere in his spirit.
Well, I tell you what I am it, what it makes me as a high-achieving Karen who’s been saved by the grace of Jesus. Thank you. That is basically what I am, but what’s fascinating is the integrator has been so helpful for me. So really interestingly, my husband is 95%, three and 95% nine. Ooh, we’re both. Ooh, I know we’re a fast that he’s a laid back achiever living.
That’s exactly what he is exactly what he is. But what has been really interesting is I have two girls and obviously we don’t ever want to reduce our children to a number. Right. But it has been so fascinating to see. My oldest is like a classic three. She is my achiever. She’s very much like the struggles that are described in the Instagram very much are her.
And then my youngest daughter is a classic eight. She’s only four, but she is like whole, the challenger. Like don’t you stay in the way. So what’s interesting is when you say pressure, I’m already seeing that in my nine-year-old. I can already see that sense and I feel it because that is a large part of who I am as well.
What questions should I be asking my daughter who has experienced such pressure? How do I. Alleviate some of that as a mom, because I’m a high achieving woman. Yeah. I like getting it, done. My husband getting the gold star for it. Yeah. And being recognized for your accomplishments. Absolutely. That’s so three and what’s interesting is my husband is kind of like that too, so I can easily see my daughter feeling the pressure and she is natured to feel it on top of it.
She pushes herself as well. So I am like making this very personal and asking what kind of questions can I be asking her to help alleviate some of that pressure and let her know that she is loved, not because of her achievements, but because she’s been made in God’s image. And what questions do I need to be asking?
I think the big thing, especially at that age is always kind of helping them to get to their why, why do I want to be on swim team and the lead in the play and. The best piano player, is it because I really sincerely enjoy all of those activities or is it because I love being the best at everything. And I love everyone praising me and I love everyone.
Whatever, not that there’s no judgment. That’s why you want to do it. How do you get up excited about every single one of those activities? If you weren’t getting an award at the end, if you wouldn’t have a standing ovation, when it was over, would you still have been glad that you did it not to say that you can’t do things sometimes?
You know what I mean? Like it’s not too. But to help her start to have those neural pathways of asking Purcell those questions. Because right now it’s all on you to sign her up, to take her there, to do the thing, whatever, by the time. And I have a client that is like this, who is a senior, who is on the varsity soccer team, who is editor of the school newspaper, who plays the flute, who has a part-time job at the YMCA who codes robots, and then teaches other people how to code robots on the weekend.
Plus has taken a double honors load this entire time, TAs for one of her teachers. I mean, literally like, I am not making up any of this and yet she comes just exhausted, right? Yeah. Yeah. And she knows like, in her mind, cognitively, she knows like this is too much, but she had to ask herself those questions, which is where I come in, which is great.
We work through it. It’s awesome. But why are we doing the things that we do. And when is it the three’s biggest problem is we don’t have hobbies. We just do things for what we get out of it. Yeah. We like to check off the boxes, get it done. Exactly. Enjoy of the achievement, put it on the resume, whatever it is.
And again, I never want to shame kids, especially for, because this is just how we’re wired and also nurtured, you know? Right. There’s no shame in it, but just helping them to ask the questions. And because I, as an adult, as an adult, three struggle with what do I do just for fun? What is just for me? What do I love?
Like when I read a book it’s to learn something and. Again, not that there’s anything wrong with that, but to the point where we burn out. Yeah. Because that’s where we’re at, because we haven’t stopped to reflect and ask ourselves why and take time to breathe. So just helping her learn how to ask those, why questions herself.
I think it’s huge. I love that. And I think part of the challenge, especially at this age again, I’m kind of my, daughter’s just on like the very beginning of this age group. I think it’s also constantly trying to be insightful watching for cues that she can’t verbalize, but trying to really assess does she truly loved this because she’s already, you know, she’s in performing arts, she plays the piano.
She wants to do everything, which I completely understand. Yeah. I was the same way, but I see there’s certain things that she does. And I don’t know that she truly loves it. It’s not necessarily bringing her life. But then at the same time, the balance is I’ll use music as a great example. Piano is really the first place that anybody who wants to be on stage, regardless of what you want to do, you need to play piano period.
You need to have some sort it’s an education. You don’t have to be a PNS, but it’s an education. Know how to read music, know how to develop your ear. Yeah, absolutely. My daughter loves the stage. She is a natural and I had to help her understand you don’t love the piano. I understand that. But if you want this, that you really love, then you do have to do this.
But one of the balances we came up with is she takes piano every other week, as opposed to every week, because I also recognize she doesn’t just love it. She absolutely loves the performing arts center that she goes to two hours a week to dance and act. Yeah. So I guess I’m verbally processing through what you’re saying and trying to find that balance where sometimes.
Kids do have to do the things they don’t absolutely love in order to get what they really do love. And so a lot of the times, yeah, a lot of times that’s true. And that is an interesting part about teaching personal development to kids who are still developing, figuring out who they are. We have to try all the things and we have to go to school and learn things like we were talking about.
I don’t know, sine cosine and tangent with my eighth grader the other day. Right. And she’s like, mom, have you ever used this? And I’m like, I swear, I got an instant headache just thinking about it. I was like, I swear, I have not. I said, but if you are interested in interior design and maybe you want to do some architecture, I think there are applications where that.
Come in handy in the future. I said, I don’t know. I said that being said, I remember sohcahtoa, which was like my pneumonic device for sine cosine and tangent. And I said, well, you paid much better. I’m like what? It says my pneumonic device. But anyway, but yes, we talk about it because my daughter also, she’s the two wing three, I’m a three wing tail and she’s attending totally see that.
Yeah. And also oldest child. So there’s that also, my second child is an eight, which is really interesting. We have a lot to talk about because she also loves the singing. She loves to performing the voice lessons, but sometimes the voice lessons get hard. When you get to a certain level, she’s almost 14 and there it’s not just singing for fun.
There’s some work that has to be done. And what I tell her is what you’ll find in life is this is going to sound a little crass. You have to eat the crap sandwich sometimes to get the dream. You have to love the goal enough to do the thing you don’t want to do to get to the goal and every dream worth having.
Has a crap sandwich along with it. And if you don’t love it enough to do that, then that’s not really what you want. It’s the same thing as getting a dog. You, you gotta eat the crap sandwich of getting the dog and if you’re not willing to, then you don’t want it that bad. And that’s okay too, because I think with the right support, you’re going to find whatever the thing is you love, but that is something.
And school is one of those things to some degree, because you want to be an adult that is responsible and on your own. Well, most places are going to make you show some sort of diploma certificate for that, right. To get to the next level and maybe multiple of those. So I think that concept expands to so many things, even outside of like achievement based topics.
I think even in relationships, this is true. I think about when I was a kid, like I got made fun of, I went through her things like I still have, everybody has had those experiences in some way, shape or form. And it’s a similar concept. Like I wasn’t just removed from the struggle. My parents were. They didn’t say this, but it was basically like, suck it up.
This is how people are going to yeah. Yeah. Like you have to find your value outside of that. You are loved you’re ours. Here’s all the things that make you so special. And I think it’s important to give that reinforcement, but it’s the same. What you’re saying is true for so many things that you have to go through the hard stuff in order to come out stronger, or you have to do the crappy things in order to get the goal that you want.
That concept of stop trying to skip the struggle and in order to get what you really. But I love the way you did it with the piano lessons. Have you found a way to make it work though? Because it’s not that she doesn’t have to do it, or she does have to do it in a certain way. You thought creatively, you were a problem solver.
She worked with you because I also think those hard things, we can put a lens on and say, what if this hard thing was fun? What would that look like? How can we make it more fun? Or how can we make it work in our lives? So that’s fun too. Well, I liked the problem solving statement because to actually go back.
So I was made fun of in middle school, on the bus, which is crazy when I think about it now, but I have these high school boys, they found out that I wanted to be a Virgin until I got married. Oh my gosh, never heard the end of it. I was a middle school girl. Can you imagine these high school guys? Like what, anyway.
So I started listening to CDs in the bus. That was my problem solving. It was like, okay. Really irritating. It also hurts, but I don’t need to sit and listen to it every time. So my solution was okay, the stinks. I can’t unhear it, but I’m going to listen to a CD. I don’t need to listen to this, the entire bus ride.
So anyway, yeah. Problem solving. It’s not all or nothing, but it’s not like my parents just drove me to school is where I’m getting at. Right. There was a middle ground and I chose to listen to, and you’re better off because of it. You’re better at problem solving skills. Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. So one of the habits that you coach your girls through, I did end up, I was a Virgin until I got married.
By the way, let’s throw that out there. That’s a whole nother conversation. I get a lot of eyebrow raises when I say that, but I made it. One of the habits you coach your girls through is called scheduling success. You’ve created this seven step method for them to practice. Tell me a little bit more about what this method is.
So this is my fiercest framework and the idea behind it is that these are the habits, attitudes, and mindsets that you need for success in anything, whether we’re talking about relationships or a big goal or dream or whatever it is, and to do a quick run down it, it follows the word fiercest F I E R C E S T.
So it’s eight. I’m like how many events I have to count. I have to count. And so it’s field. So having a daily morning gratitude practice, I am statements, which are your affirmations. And your mantra is like reminding yourself who you are, who you want to be, how you’re going to show up. He has exercised.
But I say that with a caveat in the sense that for when I’m teaching this, I talk about literally 60 seconds. Movement first thing in the morning to connect your mind, body and spirit. That’s what I’m talking about now. Hopefully that also extends into other areas of their life and may move more than that.
But that’s what the first eat. First thing in the morning is R is read. And again, this is not your school reading or a novel reading. This is read an idea or a thought or a passage. Like I personally read the Bible, but I tell them quotes or whatever, whatever works. And then what I want you to do when you read about it is think for a second, do I believe this?
And if I do, how does that impact how I’m going to live today? And so that’s what the read is again, very quick. So they had a gratitude statement. They’ve had an IAM, they’ve done 60 seconds of movement. They’ve read something short and quick and thought about it. The sea is creating. Because we are creative people like everyone is creative.
So whether that’s making a beautiful breakfast or putting together an outfit that they love or doing a little doodle or a sketch, whatever it is, singing a song, doing a dance, creating in some way, knowing that you have something to give the world, create encourage someone is the next E. So that’s all about just impacting someone else in a positive way.
Sleep is your sleep habits. So that’s not exactly that was kind of the night before, but it fits in the acronym very well there. And then T is trouble because you’re able to do all these things because you have the solid foundation that you are practicing. These things, you get to go out and make your specific brand of good trouble in this world.
What does that look like? You now have the confidence in the ability and everything you need to. Go make an impact, whatever that looks like. So that is what I teach them over the course of usually nine months, or we kind of tackle one of those topics a month in addition to the social sweet shop. So it’s kind of a nine month program that they get to go through and we really dig deep into those topics and the science behind why those things matter and work, not just like, oh, Aaron came up with this cute little acronym.
It’s like, these are the things that matter. And yeah. Yeah. And you talk about social media alone. We could do a whole nother podcast on, you have so many practical ways for parents to walk alongside your children where they’re not trying to do it themselves. What many people might not realize hearing this?
We’ve been talking primarily about your role with teenage girls, but you also offer support for parents, especially moms. Just tell me a little bit, women are the primary audience listening to this, and I really want, I want you all to hear this and to see this, if there’s a mom here really interested and there is surely, surely.
How can you support them when their child goes through this process? Because I think that’s the question is like, what does it involve? How much time commitment do I need to put into it? What is it asking of my daughter? Tell me a little about the practical. Aspect of justice. What does it look like? Right.
Yeah. Well, so what’s great about it is I have a virtual membership program. We meet three Sundays in the afternoons a month, and then I also have like a fun event that comes along with that. And then I have meetings for the moms as well, which are on Wednesday evenings. If they’re available, it’s totally up to them.
The way that I really combine the support, there’s kind of two ways that I combine the support of the moms and the daughters. And that is through our Facebook group where I post everything that I’m talking about with these girls. So if I showed them a Ted talk or if we addressed a specific. Situation or somebody had a very clear question.
They know all about what happened in the group so that they can continue those conversations at home. In addition, the cool part, what I think is really cool is I text the moms and the daughters every single day. So I have their cell phone numbers. I text them every day and it’s an encouraging word, or it’s a quote, or it’s a thought, or it’s a, what have you.
So they’re on the same page. They already have a connecting point. And especially as the girls get older, that’s really important to have that connection point. But the Wednesday nights with the moms are my time to just encourage them and remind them that they’re doing an awesome job and keep them feeling that this is a stage of life.
Yeah, no matter how good or how bad it is, this is a stage of life and we are going to get through it together. And we do a lot of problem solving. We do a lot of that type of thing as well, so, but I have a free and that support yeah. That support that you offer. So it’s three Sunday afternoons a month.
And then can they sign up for what’s the package look like? Do you sign up for a year? Do you sign up for. So we run the program September through may. And so if at any point girls can jump in because it’s a very welcoming group. All of the girls are very excited to be there and to meet new people and all of those types of things.
So you can jump in at any point we’re getting in November is our, I am month. December is our exercise month, but you get access to the entire library of videos prior to that, anytime that you jump in. They can also have one-on-one coaching with me, always. I’m always available for that opportunity as well, because especially as the girls get older, as they get into that 14, 15 year olds specifically, but even some of the younger kids, they have very personalized issues that they want to talk one-on-one with an adult about in a safe space.
And so I’m also available for that, but I was also going to say, I have a free group for moms as well, just called fierce moms where all of our moms together are supporting one another because I’ll have somebody come in there and ask about like, what does everybody know about period, underwear? You tell us what’s happening because we need to figure that out.
Or what is happening with this specific show? Are you letting your kids watch this? Should we be watching this what’s going on with this? Does anybody know anything about it? What books should I be giving them for Christmas, whatever. Like, those are the types of questions we ask and support each other on.
And that group is very. Protected because there’s a lot of girl, mom groups out on Facebook and the drama can escalate quickly. So I very much protect this group and it’s only positive. It’s only uplifting. It’s only encouraging. It’s only compassionate. There is zero of anything else in that group. So that’s always an option as well.
And then tell me again, the age range from the girls that you coach like, what’s the kind of, of that span starts as young as eight. I have girls eight through 16 in my groups. And so I have in-person groups as well that are here locally, as well as online groups. And then I do one-on-one coaching all the way up through college.
That’s awesome. So just to recap for people listening here, the bottom line is you can sign up for this program at any time, obviously when to get your daughter involved in this P S you’re signed up, you know, and then there’s free group options. There’s one-on-one coaching, but the minimal requirement is that you have three Sunday afternoons a month and it is virtual.
You do not have to be in Chicago. So this is really anybody listening to this daughter can sign up. And what I love about your structure is that there’s so much room here for parents to speak their values into the structure you are offering a scientifically based. Here are the things that we know work for you, but I love it because it gives a lot of freedom for parents to still be able to speak the value that they hold dear in their own families, which may look a little different from family to family.
Absolutely alongside. A structured, organized program, which is why I think this is going to continue to skyrocket. I want to let everyone know she is offering a free video course from others and their daughter’s called triumph together where you expand a little bit more on some of these things. This link is going to be on the show
Aaron’s website is WW dot Erin tar E R I N T a R And I just want to end with. You are known to say, I choose my thoughts to create my life and change the world. I am fierce. And you guys listening need to understand that I have seen her heart and just how fiercely passionate Erin is about your daughter.
She has been in tears talking about how passionate she is about this demographic. And it’s truly a blessing to have you in our lives. I haven’t even used your services yet, but I’m already putting your number on speed dial, but I just, I thank you for the way that you are serving our daughters and helping us as moms be able to navigate just all the pressures that we all are facing.
So I continue to pray, blessing over your business and over your heart, your family, your sweet girl. Um, thank you so much. I so appreciate it. It’s been an honor to be here and so fun. Always fun to connect and have good conversations about things that are important, the most important things to us.
Exactly. Right. Thanks so much, Aaron. Absolutely. Thank you so much for joining us for this episode of the imperfectly empowered podcast. It is my honor to be here with you. I am so grateful for each and every one of you. If you were watching on YouTube, be sure to click the subscribe button below. So you don’t miss a show and leave a comment with your thoughts from today’s episode below.
If you are listening via your preferred podcasting platform, would you help keep us on the air by rating our show and leaving an honest review of your thoughts from today in case you haven’t heard it lately, your story matters and you are loved. This is your host on a former, and I will see you here next time on the imperfectly empowered podcast.

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