Raising Entrepreneurial Girls


Want your girl to be mentally tough? Grit and resilience are essential tools.

 “Gritty people have a growth mindset; when bad things happen, they don’t give up.” – Angela Duckworth

Angela Duckworth, bestselling author of Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance and the psychologist behind 2013’s viral grit TED Talk, defines grit as “passion and perseverance for long-term goals.” Duckworth explains that with grit, people become more resilient in the face of adversity. With grit and resilience as her superpowers, your girl is less likely to lose heart when things don’t go her way. Instead, she’ll see failure as a stepping stone to success.

Here are some practical ways you can help your girl build grit and resilience through the new year and for years to come.


  1. Ask her about her dreams and goals – Get to know your girl’s interests, dreams, and goals. And whenever your girl shares her excitement, applaud her efforts in pursuing these passions. You could even suggest a dream board or roadmap as visualization tools for her passions, dreams, and goals.
  2. Encourage her to step out of her comfort zone   Duckworth recommends that parents or guardians give their kids opportunities to pursue at least one challenging activity that requires practice and discipline to get them out of their comfort zone. Why? So, your girl learns discipline and how to focus on her efforts.
  3. Let her get frustrated and fail from time to time – Discomfort and frustrations are part of the process of attaining a goal or trying something new. Resist the impulse to “rescue” your girl whenever she struggles with a new skill, activity, sport, or entrepreneurial venture. Struggling and failing are important ways for her to develop resilience. Trust that she will figure things out for herself and push through the discomfort.
  4. Share stories of gritty and resilient people – Your girl can find inspiration in the success of others. Publications with entrepreneurial or leadership themes offer positive examples of people who had to deal with less-than-ideal scenarios but pulled through, thanks to grit and resilience. Your girl can also look to motivational books and advice from young girl entrepreneurs for more inspiration.
  5. Discuss the growth mindset – Share what Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck, author of Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, says about a growth mindset and its opposite, a fixed mindset. Explain to your girl that with a growth mindset, she will believe that her traits are not set in stone and that she can develop her skills and abilities through effort, hard work, and persistence. On the other hand, a fixed mindset believes that success depends on one’s intelligence or talent and cannot be changed. Use the example of a baby. No one looks at a baby and thinks that the baby is dumb because it doesn’t know how to walk. It just hasn’t learned how to yet! With a growth mindset, your girl can crawl, walk, or even run to master new opportunities.
  6. Be gritty and resilient yourself – Actions speak louder than words. Take on tasks and activities that are beyond your comfort zone. Show your girl how you recover even after you falter. When you model resilience for your girl, your girl can mirror your growth mindset and be less fearful of making mistakes or failing.

Encourage your girl to have “passion and perseverance toward long-term goals” in 2022. Yes, every girl is different, and each kid or teen grows and gains skills at their own pace. And some are naturally more gritty and resilient than others. But if your girl adopts the tips and activities listed above, she can definitely improve her grit and strengthen her resilience. Soon enough, she’ll have what it takes to succeed in school, life in general, and the bright future she sets her sights on.

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