When Star Wars heroine Rey finally steps into her Jedi power it's only once she's pushed passed her own insecurities.
Her mentor, Princess Leia's advice to her before this pivotal moment:
"never be afraid of who you are"
Our resident emotional intelligence expert Laura Chappell says this is a move Tweens need to make sooner rather than later in their quest for MORE JOY and living their best life.
How to hold true to you? Read on heros..
Who am I?
Not an easy one to answer!
Tween + Teenage is a time of growing independence. And as part of that growth humans (psychologically speaking) start to explore their identity. In lay-speak that's: thinking about who are and what made you that way.
It’s a time of change and exploration. You’ll experiment with different looks - altering your hair, makeup and clothes…likely on a regular basis. You’ll try new hobbies and interests; seek out novel approaches to familiar situations; question the world around you and push boundaries you previously just accepted. These are all a normal part of self-discovery.
What makes a challenging situation more complicated, is while you are finding ‘YOU’, other people will try to influence the person you become. Sound familiar?
They may be those closest to you - family; teachers, coaches, or mentors; peers; club, church or community members…even people you don’t like. They will all have beliefs about what is best for you, about who they think you are, or who they believe you should be. And it can be very overwhelming! The opinions of these often, well-meaning people, might start to confuse you. You may change the type of person you truly want to be, to make other people happy.
So why does expressing yourself, and staying true to YOU feel so hard at times?
The answer in psychological terms is: sameness feels safe.
But here’s what’s interesting…the Cambridge Dictionary defines ‘identity’ as the following:
'Who a person is, or the qualities of a person or group that makes them different’.
So, by definition, not only is it OK to be different, you are meant to be different. It’s what makes you, YOU.
And REAL talk: people will challenge you in big and small ways your whole life. Sometimes they may not even know they're doing it. But in owning your truth you build resilience - an inner shield - to defend yourself from being bothered about that. And the Tweendom's no better time to start!
My HOT 3 REMINDERS in staying true to you are:
1. Hang out with people who accept you for who you are.
..who champion you instead of criticise.
If you find you're always being criticised you're in the wrong circle.
2. Bullies and haters will not be remembered at the end of the day.
You have to be something, achieve something, stand for something in your own right in this life. That's what lasts. Going back to the above dictionary definition, that's what defines us!
True power lies in being brave. Being your best. And being there for your brothers and sisters so they're there for you too when the time comes. Not in dragging others down.
Segue way to...
3. Yes it's a meme but finding + Being YOU, really IS your super power.
Find that power in your Tweens, and use it with KINDness, and you're in for higher self esteem, more confidence, higher chances of performing well... (the research studies list goes on).
Basically you're in for More Joy and success in the days ahead.
And that's what we all want right?
TWEENS TO THE FRONT.
Find your force.