Featured Female: Stacey Lender
Our mission at the Girls Leadership League is to contribute to more confident and sparkly girls. What advice would your big girl self-give your teen/tween self about confidence? What advice would your big girl self give your teen/tween self about confidence?
People who say they wake up feeling confident every day are full of it. It might sound (and feel) corny, but positive self-talk actually works. Saying, “I am strong. I am brave. I can do this.” helps make it true – even if you don’t believe it. Fake it ‘til you make it! (A rare instance where fake can be a good thing.)
In my classes we teach young girls to create a Friendship Recipe of traits they are looking for in a true friend… What characteristics would be in your friendship recipe?
I don’t love cooking so the word ‘recipe’ makes me cringe…but when it comes to true friends, it’s all about finding people who accept you for who you are, and are there for you no matter what.
We believe strong family values and consistency are important in creating confident kids…What was one of your favorite family traditions from your childhood? What new traditions have you started with your own family?
Every year for our birthdays, my parents gave me and my brother the gift of Broadway show tickets. I remember seeing my first show when I was six – My Fair Lady – and I’ve saved the Playbill of every show I’ve seen since. This early exposure sparked an interest that eventually led to my career in live entertainment marketing, and I feel lucky to now be raising my family just a few subway stops from the Theater District. We go to shows as a family as often as we can (mostly musicals), and look for discounts on playbill.com and broadwaybox.com.
We teach our girls the importance of accepting oneself even when you don’t feel so sparkly…How do you respond when you receive a compliment? Tell us about this.
I just say thank you!
We believe pursing a passion is a great way to build confidence for girls… If you had free time to pursue a “passion project” what would it be? (i.e. something outside your regular work and leisure activities. For example, learning to knit or building a piece of furniture)
No one ‘has’ free time: You have to make time for the things that are important to you and make you happy. Eight years ago I had an idea for a story – I’d always loved writing, but hadn’t written anything since college (besides in my journal). I signed up for a class at my local JCC on Wednesday nights called ‘How to Write a Novel’ and discovered that I really enjoyed the writing process. I fit writing in the edges between work and family, and I am beyond thrilled that my first novel CITY MOUSE is now being published. What started as a passion project turned into something bigger than I ever dreamed it would!
An important skill we teach our girls is how to identify how she feels about a situation and ask for what she needs to make it better… How good are you at communicating what you feel and asking for what you need with others?
Being assertive has always been something that comes naturally to me. If you don’t ask, you don’t get!
Social Media is now a fact of life… Social Media… Love it or Love Hating It?
Love it (when my daughters help me with it).
What do you do to help balance your digital life and you’re your “real life”? Any tips to share?
My iPhone is a ubiquitous (and useful) part of my life, and I’ve recently entered a stage of digital acceptance. It’s truly amazing that I can hail a car, order soap, and communicate with someone halfway across the world all with a device I can hold in the palm of my hand! My new view is to stop fighting with my kids (and myself) about balance, and to embrace our electronic companions. (But keep them out of the bedroom.)
When you look out into the world, who do you see as great role models for girls?
Female comedians are fierce and fearless – Samantha Bee is a great example of a woman who is speaking her mind and breaking through.
Can you think of a mistake that you made that led to great things – an important learning or a new direction?
I am hoping that any mistakes I made today answering these questions will lead me to something unexpectedly amazing!
We see fear as normal and a sign that you are pushing yourself to grow … Do you have any tips for pushing through fear?
I felt like the entire writing process was an exercise in getting through fear – never having done something like this before, I would stare at the blank page and wonder, “what if what I write isn’t good enough?” I was lucky to find a wonderful mentor and a supportive group of writers who reassured me that every creative endeavor includes feelings of doubt – especially projects that take years to complete. Knowing I was not alone helped me make it through to the finish line.