A Letter To My 13-Year-Old Self

A Letter To My 13-Year-Old Self

You are SO much more than you believe
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To my 13-year-old self,

There are many things I know now that I wish I had known when I was your age. Yes, every lesson learned is all but a part of life, however, there are certain things that would have been helpful to know as I battled through those awkward, uncomfortable, and emotional teenage years that you are just beginning. If there is one thing I have learned since my young teenage years, that I pray to God you will realize sooner, is to know your self worth. Know your self worth. It will change your whole perspective on your innocent, beautiful life.

Don't pay attention to the other girls in your class talking about their boyfriends and how you need to have one. You don't. Don't pay attention to them when they tell you that you have to dress, act, and look a certain way to win the attention of boys. You don't. Don't pay attention to boys. Not yet, anyway. These years are about becoming comfortable with the skin that you are in, not dwelling on some boy who isn't going to matter weeks or months down the road. Be the girl that realizes young that she damn well does not need a boy to make her happy. Be the girl that forms enough confidence young to dress how she likes, act how she likes, and do what she likes because those are the things that her happy. Be the girl that other girls wish they could be like because you are that amazing; don't be the girl wishing she was everyone else. Know that who you are is more than enough and that you don't need anyone else to complete you.

Don't let people walk all over you; stand up for yourself. You are so, so much more than you would ever believe. Maybe you aren't like everyone else, so what? The world would be a much more boring place if everyone walked around like clones of each other. If someone hurts your feelings, stand up for yourself. If someone makes you mad, tell them how you feel. If you let people get away with stepping on your toes, they're going to keep on doing it until they break them. Fight back, get your hands a little dirty, don't be afraid to feel emotions that scare you, they will only make you stronger. Know that you are better than the words people speak about you.

Don't ever feel as though you are not beautiful. You won't ever have the most perfect skin, or the best hair, or a flawless body, but what you do have is beauty in itself. Your teeth with braces? They're beautiful. Your eyes covered with glasses? They're gorgeous. The pimples on your face? They show that you are human. Always remember that looks are not everything, not even close. You are beautiful because of the heart beating within your chest, the kindness that radiates from within it, and the goodness you serve throughout the world. Please know that you are enough.

Cherish this time,

Your future self

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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Summer And Jobs

Working summers doesn't have to be tedious.

Aasayed
Aasayed
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Like many other college students, I was ready for summer but was kinda bummed that I had to work. Its not that I didn't like where I was working, I actually was really lucky to be working in a hospital environment but I just hated being alone all summer from 9-5. I've had this job for a few years now and a few other paid interns came and went but I never really connected with any of them. This year is different though.

I got really lucky to have another intern work with me that was very similar to me. The tasks we got were always simple but they were made to be more fun because I got to do them while talking with someone else. Now I actually enjoy and look forward to going to work.

The key to finding a good job is finding one that you enjoy doing and one that will help you gain knowledge that will help you out with future career plans. Working with friends also make tasks enjoyable! I would be careful with working with your friend however because if your job needs you to be serious and focused, being around your best friends may distract you from that.

Another thing that definitely makes summer jobs more enjoyable are taking breaks! It is your summer vacation after all! I'm not saying don't take a day off just to sit around, but if you make plans with family and friends, take a Friday off and enjoy the warm weather and good company! Employers understand that us college students and on break and have lives, they are usually very lenient with days off!

If you have to do a summer job to make money to live off of or pay for college, the best thing to do is look at the big picture. If you don't enjoy your job but can't afford to quit, remember that the money if going to help you out a lot. Also, this job is probably only for the summer right? So it's not permanent my friend! Get through these annoying few weeks and you will be back at college, taking steps for a bigger and brighter future.

Summer jobs are tough, I know, but make the most of it! And don't forget to enjoy it whenever you can!!!

Aasayed
Aasayed

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