Empower Your Female Friends And Boost Your Own Confidence

Women are taught that appearance is everything, which is absolutely untrue. Empower your female friends and you will feel enormous boost of confidence afterwards.

I’ve seen many pre-teen and teenage girls questioning themselves lately because they look up to celebrities or models and think: “I have to be like them to be pretty”, or “This is what I have to do to be successful”. There’s nothing wrong with looking up to celebrities as long as it’s for the right reasons.

There are plenty of actors who do great humanitarian work or are proud feminists like Emma Watson, Malala Yousafzai and Angelina Jolie. But, for the most part, these aren’t the women I see girls trying to emulate.

We live in a society where physical beauty, above many traits, is considered the most important thing you can possess. It’s important for the everyday women like you and I to be an example for young women, to show them that women are strong, intelligent and beautiful in their own ways. Here are a few things you can do or teach your female friends to empower them.

1. Appearance isn’t everything – be kind to your body.

Four best friends hugging each other

Despite what society has drilled into us through the media over the years, you don’t have to look a certain way to be considered beautiful. It’s important to love our bodies and treat them well, so we need to stop comparing ourselves to others. Young women need to know that they’re perfect just by being who they are; they don’t need to look like a model or their favorite celebrity to be happy or feel worth something.

I’ve challenged myself lately to compliment my female friends on their intelligence, their kindness and anything else that doesn’t have to do with the way they look. It’s much more fulfilling to hear someone tell you that they value your honesty or trustworthiness instead of hearing that you look like you’ve lost weight or did a great job filling in your eyebrows.

2. Stop using the phrase “That’s for boys”.

I’ve known women who own businesses, design buildings, work on cars and even play football. One of the most crippling things you can tell a young woman is that she shouldn’t do something because it’s for boys. If every woman listened to someone who told them not to do something because it isn’t feminine, then we would be even further away from gender equality than we are today.

Young women should be encouraged to follow their dreams, to do what they love and to be their own person. Let her wear masculine clothes if it makes her comfortable, and let her make her own decisions.

We need to stop limiting young women by telling them what they can or can’t do. Instead, we need to let them know that anything is possible and that women are just as capable as men are.

3. Female intelligence is attractive.

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard someone say, “Boys don’t like girls who are smarter than them”, I’d have enough money to buy the Doc Martens I’ve been eyeing for months!

We need to get rid of the concept that women who intimidate men need to dumb themselves down or lower their ambitions to please others. If being an intelligent female “bothers” someone then that is their problem, not yours.

Every time someone tells me that my success, accomplishments or the way I carry myself is intimidating, I make it a point to ask them why. Most of the time, their answer is, “I don’t know”. There is no good reason for someone to make your intelligence seem invalid. Intelligence is attractive – don’t let anyone convince you otherwise!

4. If your friends aren’t nice, they’re not worth your time.

Young women in conflict

I had two really good female friends from middle school through my freshmen year of high school. I was so caught up in retaining friends that it took a long time for me to realize that neither of them was a good person. They weren’t there for me when I needed advice or help and they were cruel to other people.

As a young woman, I felt lost when I let those friends go, but it was my mom who encouraged me to find people who were more like me. Had it not been for her advice, I don’t know what I would have done and I don’t know if I would have sought out new friends.

It’s important to encourage young women to end toxic friendships and to find people whose values line up with theirs. Meaningful friendships can make the challenges young women face much easier to deal with. Be a mentor to young women if they don’t have someone to guide them.

5. Make decisions for yourself.

Peer pressure can be crippling sometimes, and at some point or another we’ve all been tempted to give in. We need to teach young women to question if they are doing something to please themselves or to please someone else.

It’s healthy to ask other people for their advice if you need help in making a decision, but at the end of the day, only you know what is going to be best for you. When I’m facing a big decision, I always ask my closest friends what they think I should do and I take their advice into consideration, but I don’t always follow it.

When it comes to young women and the major decisions they face mentally and physically, they need to know that the decision is theirs not someone else’s.

How do you try to empower your female friends?

About the author

Colleen Wuertz

I am a 21 year old English student and radio intern who spends most of my time writing stories and conquering the world one concert at a time. My personal motto, "Do whatever makes you happy and don't apologize for it".

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