I have something I’d like to admit. Once upon a time, I, too, was a middle school girl. I bet if you ask any woman you know, they’ll admit that they once were, too. Shocking, huh?
Now, if you can find any one of them who will tell you that these were their favorite years of growing up, when they felt most confident and like they truly fit in, I’d love to know about it!
Let’s be honest, middle school is tough. My heart often goes out to girls that I see at this age because it can be such an unfortunately awkward stage in life.
May I offer a word of advice? Be Nice.
First, be nice to your self. Smile when you look in the mirror. It will light your face up far better than any make-up ever will. Stop beating yourself up for something awkward you said or did. If anyone else noticed, they have probably already forgotten. Therefore, you should too. Remind yourself of the good that is within you everyday. Surround yourself with people who are kind and make you feel good about yourself. Keep friends that make you feel good about who you are when you are with them. Don’t worry about the rest. If people are snide or rude or mean, that is their flaw and has nothing to do with you.
Second, be nice to your friends. Believe it or not, the girl that seems so confident sitting next to you probably shares your same insecurities. So, be a real friend. Invite that girl to join your group or do something with just the two of you. Be the kind of friend that you want to have at your side. Don’t desert your friend if she does something that others poke fun at. Good friends are worth sticking by. Some of your friends are likely to be with you for many years to come. I still have some of my friends from this age, and they have grown up to be wonderful women. Others won’t, and that is OK. If you no longer enjoy each others company and aren’t as close, no big deal. There is no need for name-calling or back-stabbing.
Third, be nice to the rest. This will carry you far in life. When someone drops their books, help pick them up. While people will soon forget the embarrassing thing you did yesterday, they will remember your kindness. I moved late in elementary school and can still tell you who my first friend was. I was the new kid and she was nice to me.
Be that girl. Be the one who looks in the mirror and is kind to the person reflected back (zits and all), the one who stands by her friends, and the first to help lend a hand. Encourage your friends to do the same. This might just make your school and your world a nicer and better place to be.
An all grown up middle school girl