By Danielle Meeker, Regular ContributorOctober 23, 2015
image via mettahu.wordpress.com
I saw a little girl the other day wearing a shirt with this message on it: Girls must be given room to develop their personalities. I loved it. I want all little girls to have a shirt with a message like that in their closet and to wear it all the time with confidence, because it’s completely true!
As a society, messages are constantly being pumped into the minds of girls.
What little girl needs to be told who to hang out with, what toys to play with, or how to dress when she hasn’t even reached puberty?! Even when she does reach puberty and goes to middle school, high school, and beyond, she still needs room to grow and be herself!
When I was 11, I had tried almost every sport, activity, and adventure you could think of. I tried some, quit some, really loved some, and continued to do some all the way through college. Looking back, I’m so glad my parents, friends, and teachers let me try things and figure out exactly what I liked. There was no guilt when I wanted to quit soccer, because I hated running. My parents didn’t force me to keep taking piano lessons when my schedule got crazy with things I wanted to do more. Nobody pushed me to take dance classes or sew or do things I didn’t want to do based on what their vision of me was. I was able to become my own person.
Every girl is different. Something you may love, your best friend might want nothing to do with. And you know what? That’s ok!
So many influences get pumped your way, it can be hard to sort through all of them. The media wants girls to be a certain way, your parents might have a vision for you, and even your friends are going to try to influence your decisions, but at the end of the day, you gotta be you! Go stretch those wings and fly. Wherever you land, as long as it makes you happy, that’s all that matters.
How do you stay true to yourself when others try to influence you? How do you make sure you have room to grow?
Danielle has a BA in English, emphasis in Creative Writing. She is a marine mammal trainer on Oahu, working with dolphins, sea lions and penguins. She loves singing, photography, iced coffee, and everything water related. Check out her YouTube channel DanielleMeekerTalks and Instagram @dmeekertalks.
Every girl is a work in progress. If you need more help, click here.