Kimberly-Aja-south-africa
Behind The Scenes Family, Work & Life Love & Life

3 Lessons I Taught My Daughters

One of the most pleasurable parts about being a mother is watching your babies – those magnificently small, helpless gems of new life – grow into real, adult women.

As a mother, you grow older and wiser too. And from a distance, you watch as the young women you raised leave the nest and go out in the world, experience their own life dilemmas, and make their mark using their own talents.

I’ve learned a lot since I was a young mother with my baby girl in Minnesota, but there are a few lessons that I instinctively knew to impart to both of my girls.

1. YOU are the treasure

In life, we often seek outside of ourselves to find personal value through that great job or that amazing person.

We expect it to fill us up and make us feel valuable, make us feel loved, make us feel special, make us feel beautiful, make us feel like we are winning!

But in truth, YOU are the treasure.

You are that special thing you are looking for.

You don’t need to look further than inside yourself to know that you are the greatest treasure of all.

2. KNOW yourself: Learn your patterns, your good habits, your challenges, and your vulnerabilities ​

​P​ay attention to yourself ​without judgments​. Treat the challenging parts of who you are with care and patience.

You are an evolving project, discovering how to be the best person you can be. ​

Don’t feel compelled to change who you are to satisfy someone else. Grow for your own fulfillment.

​Push yourself in the right direction with gentle guidance, patience, and care.

​3. LOVE your body & care for your heart

From your  formation inside your mother’s womb to your final days on earth, your body will carry your spirit through life. Honor that.

Never speak negatively or hatefully about your body.

Your heart, which is the very core of your essence, should always be protected physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

Surround yourself with people who love and care for their bodies, and share your life with someone who cares for your heart in equal measure that you care for their heart.

These are my lessons to my girls.

What are yours?

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65 comments

  1. Shawn says:

    I always tell my daughter that she is special. God made us all that way. So, just because it is the perfect solution for your friends, it may not be for you and reverse.

    Follow your own thoughts and feelings. No other person not even mom can describe how you feel about something. Stay true to yourself.

    Your body is a treasure. It is not to viewed, played with or touched by anyone other than a Dr and for the purpose of that visit. If your eyes are bothering you, then your heart shouldn’t be checked.

    Just some -isms of my own.

  2. Shakia says:

    I have taught my children that nothing is giving to you. You have to work hard for what you want in life. That they have to want it for themselves, it’s not enough for me to want it for them. I have also taught them to not give excuses and take responsibility.

  3. Kkyslir says:

    I agree with what you have said. It took pray, listen, and watching others to grow me to the woman that I am for me to instill wisdom of this magnitude into my daughters. Self love and reflection, stand up for yourself, don’t accept someone’s bad opinion of you. Grow forward from your mistakes. Let go of anything/anyone that no longer serves you. Answer your calling. If you’re going to be a skater or a doctor, own a pet store or be a mother. Be the best to your capacity.

  4. Rosa says:

    This is beautiful and wise advice……. And never compromise your morals and standards to fit in or impress others……. People who truly love you and have your best interest will love you for who you are and what you represent.

  5. Leslie williams says:

    I taught my girls love u and respect yourself at all times, don’t rush life, you are beautiful and unique…..and never try and fit in also if u don’t feel welcome somewhere don’t never put your self in tht position if u can help it.

  6. catherine says:

    I have 2 nieces and a 4 year old daughter that I love more than anything in this world! I teach my daughter the same thing!
    Beauty comes from within. In order to love others we have to love ourselves. Thank you for sharing your lesson with us. I will use it with my daughter. My nieces are young adults now and I did teach them the same thing I’m now teaching my daughter.

  7. Ashlee says:

    A quote from Maya Angelou, “If you,know better, you do better.”
    Be a good role model.
    I know I can be whatever I want to be, if I work hard at it, I will be where I want to be.
    Can’t is a bad word, You Can! You will! You Must!
    Keep trying, don’t give up!

    These are some positive reinforcement I try to instill in my babies!!

  8. Dian Ritchie says:

    Thats so great Kimberly Elise and if more of us as mothers would teach our girls to value themselves and love who they are there would be less abuse of us as women. I don’t have any daughters, I have two sons and I teach them to be truthful and to be leaders, not followers and to treat young ladies as they would treat their mom and their female cousins who they grow up around and live like sisters and brothers.

  9. Deon says:

    This is a beautiful message my daughter’s are twins and one of my daughters is an artist beyond her time she can draw make things out of anything can sing and loves the artist fatai and has her own unique style and only 5 my other daughter rides skateboard and plays her guitar and they sit in their room and make their own music i am happy to be their mother and if u ask them they know how beautiful they are and how much i love them. BE BLESSED AND ENCOURAGED YOU ARE WONDERFUL AND DOING A WONDERFUL JOB WITH YOUR DAUGHTERS!

  10. Louisa Hill says:

    Thank you for sharing these great lessons. These are also the core lessons that I began to teach my daughter when she was very young. She’s older now and finding her own way, but she continues to honor and to chart her course with these core values as her foundation.
    By the way, your daughters are so beautiful just as you are.

  11. sibiya91@gmail.com says:

    That’s an amazing thing you are doing with your children. I wish I can really teach my little sister the same, she’s a teenager and really does not listen to anything I say and sometimes I feel like I use the wrong way to try to get her to behave, for example by saying something that is going to make her feel guilty of her action, but I don’t think that really works out. I really want to assist her and show her a good way of living and support, but sometimes I feel so helpless and I wonder if I am failing her. What worries me is that I will be looking after my late older sister’s son next year and I want to be a good parent to him, but how will I do that when I can’t handle my younger sister now? but I always believe that I will learn and I will be able to do it.

  12. Holly Parker says:

    Look to God and your faith. The one thing I did right was to insist my daughter go to church on Sundays and participate in Church activities. She has not departed in that to raise her son.

  13. Tinika Lillie Potts says:

    In honor of the life and love theme I would like to share the life and love nugget I teach my daughters….The life and love nugget is really simple and it is that it is impossible to live a successful life without love. That is love within us and love all around us :). Thank you for sharing it made me embrace ME as a mom treasure a little bit more.

  14. Antuan Sanders says:

    That’s exactly why your successful. I was born with number 1 figured out. It wasn’t till i hit 30 I understood the rest.

  15. Debora says:

    Thanks you for sharing…I needed to read that this morning. One of the things I taught my daughter was to treat others the way she wanted others to treat her with kindness & respect.

  16. Donna Smythe says:

    Those 3 lessons are strong beliefs that will carry them far and will help them in times of doubt. Will be able to be passed on to the generations to come, what a legacy. Thankyou.

  17. Patricia Lindsay says:

    I have one daughter and I am trying to teach her so many things but I do not want to overwhelm her. i teach her in strides.

    I post in her room that she is beautiful and i tell her almost everyday.

    I tell her that she should behave like a lady (she tends to not care how she sits or lays on the bed) I have to make her wear a lot of tights and shorts.

    I am teaching her to be focused on her goals and dreams and to realize that life doesn’t hand things to us we have to work hard for things.

    Any advice you can give will be welcomed. She is 13 years old and has an older brother 14 and her twin brother (they just turned 13 on October 12).

    Sincerely,

    Patricia

  18. I love that you’ve given your daughter’s a solid foundation ; you’ve showed them that they have worth in life and GOD made them unique and telling them to surround themselves with positive people ; most important putting GOD first he will pull them through this junction of time ” “

  19. Andrea Edwards says:

    Never search for love outside yourself, love everything about you and you will find true peace. You were wonderfully made with every perfect imperfection.

  20. Stephanie Seaberry says:

    Remember everyone has a story but make sure your is heard loud and clear never change your beliefs to compete with someone else remain your true self at all time’s love you more then anyone else ever could

  21. Stacey Francis says:

    This is beautiful. Thanks for sharing. You are my favorite actress of all times. You have this beautiful grace about you.
    Thanks for sharing this.
    I will share with my two gems.
    Continued blessings to you and yours.

  22. Raven Thompson says:

    I am adopting this to instill in my daughter. No one really ever explained it to me that way so I have made some mistakes along the way as an individual. So thank you for eloquently and plainly phrasing those lessons in that way because its duplicable and effective….

  23. The lesson I taught my children (daughter and sons) is this T.L. Osborn quote:
    “You are created in God’s image to share His love, purpose and creative plan. You are, therefore, infinitely valuable to Him.”

  24. Trennedy Jackson says:

    Well said my sister, our children are our future and we must give them the best of ourselves so that they can grow up and be productive in our society. Your daughters are beautiful princesses. I have one beautiful daughter who is my princess she sings in our choir at our church and she is on the praise team etc. I have one handsome son who is my prince he is in the navy I gave them a lot of love, support and encouragement. But must of all I introduce them to my Lord and savior Jesus Christ.

  25. Susan Phillips Schley says:

    I’m truly impressed with your entire write up. Prayerfully more mother/fathers with cohabitate your mission,desire, and understanding. I have 11 daughters & 3 sons. I live where you are with this spiritual aspect….THE TRUTH !

  26. I love you Kimberly you are a breath of fresh air and good model example for your children and the children all over the world…There are so many wonderful things we all can add to the list (1) Teach your children the Holy Bible, love your children enough to tell them the truth especially in a time we are living (2) Be not afraid, be the example that you are not a shame of…(3) The opposite of faith is fear…
    Having faith is having courage is seeing the end.
    Love You Always!

  27. I love you Kimberly you are a breath of fresh air and good model example for your children and the children all over the world…There are so many wonderful things we all can add to the list (1) Teach your children the Holy Bible, love your children enough to tell them the truth especially in a time we are living (2) Be not afraid, be the example that you are not a shame of…(3) The opposite of faith is fear…
    Having faith is having courage seeing the end.
    Love You Always!

  28. Toni Kelley says:

    I taught my daughter many important values. The first one to always keep God first,and never lose faith. Second you are always your first love. Third follow no ones foot steps cause you are a leader. I also taught my daughter to always be herself and follow your own heart. Teaching my daughter to reach her dreams and not someone else’s made her a great success!

  29. Hellen Neumbe says:

    Have loved the message, i have one daughter and have taught her to love ,appreciate herself,her body is the most pressurious thing God has given and shouldnt be missused. For marriage patner should seek God’s guidance.it remains entirely mothers responsibility of what kind of woman/man or family will our children have in the future. If every mother could read your lessons….

  30. CHRISTOPHER says:

    Good morning Kimberly.
    I wasn’t fortunate to have raised my children. I have a son and a daughter from two different women, who ironically, both chose not to tell me about my children. I have only recently found out about them after they each became adults and searched for their father.
    Never the less, my lessons would have been very similar! I strongly believe that a relationship with God through Jesus Christ is core! We know how to love ourselves and others from this and our whole belief system of values, character and morals are developed from here. Even to the growth and health of our bodies, relationships and spirit. Are we perfect, no, but we learn that as well.

  31. Deborah says:

    I really enjoy reading your posts about your personal journey of life lessons regarding your career and outside of your career. You have great insight and reflection. I have two daughters (age 11 and 6 yrs) who I really enjoy sharing my life lessons with. Actually, if you ask them both, they would probably say that I repeat myself WAY too often about things I’ve experienced and gone through! But the lessons I share with my two lovelies are: 1) Do your best, look your best and be your best. I am always giving advice to my oldest about striving for excellence and doing her best work in school and in everything she does. (ex; regarding hygiene, being a positive role model among her peers, etc.) 2) Don’t rush to grow up! Enjoy being a kid; a pre-teen and a little girl. Don’t always try to fit in with everyone. Just do YOU and to be comfortable in their skin. 3) I teach both of my girls to be kind and respectful to others. The world is not so kind as we know, but I always say to them to be nice and kind to people anyway. That their character and integrity will go along way.

    1. Kimberly Elise ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

      Deborah, those are great lessons. Such important lessons. I hope you’re teaching your girls a foundation of self-love, forever and always.

      Our girls need to love themselves when the world doesn’t love them back.

      Love & life, Kimberly.

  32. Mildred says:

    I love being a mother. The sum total of what I have advised my children are as follows:
    1. Love the Lord with all your heart
    2. As your parents we love you and always love you more than anyone else
    3. If you have done your best then you can do no more
    4. Always be truthful
    5. Advice is free, even if you dont need it accept it
    6. Getting a formal education should never be underestimated

  33. Patricia R. Blandford says:

    Out of ten children, seven girls and three boys, what our mother taught us was not only what she would say but by the example she showed. She lived the life before us that she preached. The message she preached was “JESUS”. The rest fell into place. Some of the specifics of her message was treat everybody right. After teaching us right from wrong she said always choose right. Last, if you don’t go to church, you ain’t going nowhere else :-).

  34. You will find some fascinating points in time in this article but I do not know if I see all of them center to heart. There is certainly some validity but I will take hold opinion until I look into it further. Superior write-up , thanks and we want more!

  35. Kimberly Elise ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Thank you everyone for contributing. I think this is an important conversation we all needed to have as mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, neighbors. Let’s keep the dialogue going.

  36. Chantel says:

    Our Mother taught us to love ourselves, respect ourselves and others and take care of ourselves inside (spiritually) and outside (physically). We were taught that nobody will love us if we do not love ourselves and that will show on the outside if we are doing all of the above. I am 15 my sisters are 20, 22 and 23 and we live by our parents advice. I am still growing but I see it in my sisters they have become great women and the best big sisters to me 🙂

    Please donate to help our Mom she has #breastcancer & needs surgery thank you http://www.gofundme.com/efhkc4

  37. Necollia J says:

    Hi Kimberly,

    I absolutely adore you. I am a young mother , 24, of 2 Beautiful girls – ages 2 and 5. As they grow I search for valuable lessons to teach my girls so they can be better women than I and choose to do greater things. Your values have touched me and made me want to value these in my life. I strive to be the best and teach my girls the best. Right now my focus for them is: Education, Love and Spritual love. Even though they are young, they are intelligent. I thank you and love you for these core values. Thank you

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