As Adios Barbie continues to evolve, we have decided to expand our site to include voices of various ages and it starts with today’s post. We would like to introduce you to Becca Wertheim, the 19-year-old author of Live High on Life for Teens, which she wrote during her junior year of high school at 16 years of age. Currently, she lives in North Carolina, in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains and attends UNC-Asheville, where is studying to become a school teacher. Aside from teaching, she has big dreams for the future. She plans on speaking at events and conferences to empower more teens, expanding her organization, and writing more books. The young author hopes to impact teens around the world by sharing simple ways to live a life full of happiness.
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Feeling confident and beautiful 100% of the time is far from easy. Words, actions, and opinions of others constantly contribute to the way we shape our personal perspective of our appearance. Friends, family, peers, and people in the media may make us feel as though we have to look a certain way or strive to have a certain body. But when it really comes down to it, we’re the ones who ultimately determine how we feel about ourselves. We can’t let others negatively impact our self-esteem! You may be thinking, “Wow, that’s so much easier said than done.” I totally agree. It’s not always easy to be at peace with our body and appearance, but there are several things we can do to make it a little bit easier. Here are three ways to boost your self-esteem and happiness.
1. Don’t compare yourself to others!
Every single day, we are bombarded with images, videos, advertisements, and messages that try to define and describe the “perfect” look. We live in a society where appearance is a top priority for many, and sometimes it’s easy to get sucked into the whole “looks are everything” mentality. As if having high self-esteem isn’t hard enough, the media makes it even harder for us to feel good about our bodies. Photo editing and computer alterations make it pretty simple for the media to create whatever body type and image they’d like. In addition to being tempted to compare ourselves to our peers, friends, and family, it’s also really tempting to compare ourselves to people in the media. We may think, “OMG, she’s so much prettier than me” or “I really wish I looked like her!” But if we repeatedly wish to change the way we look, we lose touch with who we truly are and end up harming the relationship we have with ourselves.
When we stop comparing our appearance to others, we come to love and appreciate all the things that make each and every one of us uniquely beautiful. One quote I really like is, “Be yourself; who else is better qualified?” Not only does this quote apply to personality and character, but it applies to body image as well. No one will ever look exactly like you. You’re beautiful in your own way and it’s important to embrace the things that make you unique! So the next time you catch yourself comparing your body or appearance to someone else, stop and think, “Wow she’s pretty. But I’m pretty too! I’m not comparable. I’m uniquely beautiful in my own way.”
2. Surround yourself with people who raise your self-esteem!
I have a friend who used to date a guy who repeatedly told her that she was ugly. When she first told me about the things he’d said to her, I was so angry! I couldn’t believe that a boyfriend would ever say those things to his girlfriend, and the saddest part was that she actually began to believe him. She is such a beautiful person, inside and out, but she was surrounded by someone who made her feel otherwise, and eventually, those cruel words started going to her head and her self-esteem dropped. She was spending all her time with someone who was constantly putting her down, and in turn, she began putting herself down, too.
They aren’t dating anymore, but I’ll never forget how much his words impacted and shaped the way she viewed her body and herself. When we hang around people like that — people who make negative comments, or say hurtful things – we’re hurting ourselves. Remember, people who truly care about us are going to want to lift us higher and make us feel better about ourselves. So, surround yourself with positive people.
If you have someone in your life that brings you down, talk to them and tell them how you feel. Let them know that you don’t appreciate being around their negative comments and constant put-downs. If it’s not someone that you feel comfortable talking to, or if you do talk to them and things don’t seem to get better, then start spending time with others who actually lift you up, remind you that you’re beautiful, and contribute to your positive self-esteem. Always remember that you should never settle for less. You deserve the best! Block out negativity. Any time someone says or does something that brings you down, ignore it. You are the one who ultimately decides how you feel about your body – not anybody else! Remember that you deserve to live a life full of confidence and happiness, surrounded by people who make you feel good about being you!
3. Go beyond just thinking that you’re beautiful … believe it!
Being able to tell yourself “I’m beautiful” or “I’m happy with my body” is such a positive thing. When you’re able to make confident, positive statements like that, it’s something to be proud of. But just saying them to yourself isn’t always enough – it’s important to actually believe them. When you believe that you’re beautiful, negative thoughts have a difficult time of sneaking into your head. Believing is so much more powerful than simply thinking. So how can you do that? How can you truly believe that you’re amazing just by being you?
Well, it’s not always easy, and it doesn’t happen overnight. It may take time, but eventually you’ll become a believer in your own beauty. Every single time you look in the mirror or think about the way you look, say to yourself, “I’m beautiful. I am unique and I’m happy with who I am. I am beautiful in my own way. And I believe that.”
Because you are.
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For more tips on how to truly love yourself and raise your self-esteem, check out Becca’s new book, Live High on Life for Teens. To learn more about her mission behind inspiring others, visit www.livehighonlife.com