Let’s Teach Girls to Be Somebodies

Lessons in life tend to have the nasty little habit of tiptoeing up to you and gut punching you out of nowhere. I liken it to a bit of a realization brick aimed straight for your noggin, (…to put it gently, of course). I’ve recently had the pleasure of testing out that hypothesis of mine, and spoiler alert: I was totally right.

I wasn’t looking for a lesson on society that fateful Monday. But that Monday I got one anyway, and it came in the form of a conversation with my  seven-year-old niece a few months ago that really got me thinking…And not in the way I was happy about.

That Monday, I came down from school, my niece and my dad waiting for me by the car. She was bouncing up and down, in her little first grader way, smiling ear to ear. She proudly displayed to me her newest artistic endeavor of a rocket ship hurdling through space. “You can have it, Hannie! Do you want it?”

“I would LOVE it! It’s beautiful…” I smiled at her and got into the car, being sure to dote on it even more, in my typical proud-aunt nature.

While driving down the road, we fell into our normal discussions. You know, how our days were, what new things she was learning at school… when, all of the sudden she proceeds to tell me about the newest developments in first grader gossip- a little boy in her class liked her! I giggled and made sure to remind her she was far too young to have a boyfriend. Wait until you’re older!

“Like when I’m sixteen?” She asked, inquisitively.

“Maybe!”

“How old are you, again, Hannie?”

I inwardly cringed, knowing exactly where this conversation was heading. “I’m 18.”

“Well, then why don’t YOU have a boyfriend? You’re 18, you should have one.”

“You have to wait for the right person,” I replied to her. “I haven’t found the right person yet.”

“Well, why don’t you? You’re 18.”

This persistent question, after all was said and answered, struck me the wrong way. This is a seven-year-old little girl that seemed absolutely bamboozled, not even being able to grasp why someone wouldn’t have a boyfriend at any given time. We kept talking and it seemed she could not fathom the idea of being older and not having a boyfriend.

As the conversation progressed, it seemed this little seven-year-old had already bought into the dreaded lie that many of us women tend to fall into: That we *gasp* need a guy in order to make us happy or complete. If you don’t see that as a societal issue, then it’s okay. We’ll work on that.

By my niece asking this seemingly innocent (yet quite intrusive) question, it revealed something very alarming. A worldview forming already, filled to the brim with all-too-serious implications.

If these young girls continue to believe what society, and perhaps the people around them are teaching them, this will not bode well. The belief that we are not anybody unless we have somebody is a destructive lie being circulated around the populace. A majority of growing up and becoming comfortable with who we are as a person comes from times where we are single. In all honesty, in order to have a healthy steady relationship later on, we must know ourselves and be independent in who we are.

I want to challenge head-on this belief of always needing somebody.

I believe instead of indoctrinating girls that the end-all in life is to settle for quantity of guys and not for quality, we need to tell girls to wait for someone that is worth their time. Knowing yourself and your value is the only way a relationship will really work in the end.

Your sole focus should be on being a somebody, not on being somebody’s. (That’s how the quote goes, right)? I love it.

Many times we love to blame society as a whole, instead of recognizing society is made up of us- everyday people. This means we must make a stand and do whatever we can do to help girls around us, and better ourselves, with the right beliefs.

All those who consist within society (news flash: that’s everyone) need to take a good look at the consequences of what we teach to our youth. Now, I’m only 18, but it’s taken years to realize some of these things for myself, realizing I can be completely content at whatever phase in life.

If we pressure girls to simply be in a relationship for the sole sake of being in a relationship, then we are more often than not pressuring them to settle for people who do not treat them right, and do not care for the greater good of them as individuals.

OR, on the other hand, it pressures girls that every friendship with a guy needs to be, or become, something more.

Not so. I’m a firm believer you need some brothers to have your back. No matter who makes fun of you for it…because, believe it or not, people can be pretty cruel about that, too.

So, how do we teach girls to be somebodies? Or better yet, how do we re-teach ourselves, after years of continually finding our value in a relationship status (or lack thereof)?

Well, first off…

We are responsible for our own happiness

Yes, you will find your person that you instantly just click with! BUT- at the end of the day- YOU alone are the person that can make or break you. YOU are responsible for your happy. Do not base it off of anything or anyone you can lose. And do not base your happiness off of whether you are in a relationship or not.  That will only lead to disappointment.

Know Your Worth

If nobody has ever told you before, you have value. And our value has nothing to do with how great we are at things, or how pretty we are, or the fact that we can juggle ten oranges at one time. (Good thing, because I can’t even juggle a schedule).

Our worth is completely independent from us. So, what does that mean? It means we have worth because we are humans, beautifully and wonderfully made. That’s apart from anything foolish you’ve ever done, or said, or thought. It’s easy to say that…but to act it and remind ourselves that?

Hm. That’s when things get tricky.

You are your own person

You may think this one is a no-brainer, but a lot rides on the full understanding of this belief.

We are individuals responsible for our own happiness, growth, and feelings of being fulfilled in life. If you are looking to find your identity in someone else, that’s not going to do you well. (Oops, I spilled the beans). Yes, our significant others should be people we feel happy around, and that encourage us to be better than we were yesterday. BUT- there is a distinct difference of finding someone that make you happy, and finding your happiness in people.

If we look for a relationship like this, what happens when the hard times come? We run away…because aren’t relationships supposed to be sunshine and roses? Nope. The ones worth it, are the ones worth fighting for.

Before getting to know anyone else, you should know YOURSELF

Before going into a relationship, we should always have a firm grasp on who we are, our values, our beliefs, our intentions…all of it. If you don’t have a good grasp on any of these things, you’re more than likely walking into a relationship blind as a bat.

Be PATIENT

Remember what I said about earlier- the whole pressure from outside sources thing? Well, guess what. IT’S A HUGE DEAL. So, don’t let yourself get pushed around into going along with something for the sake of obligation, or pressure. You’re in charge of your own life, dear. Remember, never go along with something just out of the feeling that you “need a boyfriend”.

Patience is key. And hey- guess what! I’m learning this, too! College is coming up, and I’m going to have to take my own advice. So, you’re not alone if you’re reteaching yourself that you’re a somebody without a somebody.

Quality over quantity.

I hope this post got you thinking and that we can spread this message to all you beautiful souls! (Hey, guess what, fellas)? Honestly, this message that I just said…not gender specific. I recommend it to all humans! Just felt that it was on my heart to write this.

Hannah

 

Curious about the blog this post originated from? Just click that nifty ol’ link provided below!

https://wordsmithobservations.wordpress.com/

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If You’re Passing through the Waters…

I don’t know why I had the urge to write this tonight. It kind of washed over me, like something I knew I had to do. I mean- I haven’t written a blog post in months, but tonight…it’s something I’m doing.

I hope this blog post meets you right where you’re at. Maybe you’re feeling great- I’m glad! Maybe you’re not feeling anything in particular. Maybe you’re feeling the whole world crash around you, and you don’t know why…or you know exactly why.

The thing is, I don’t know you’re situation. All I know is that when we go through heartbreaking moments, moments when we have little to no peace, moments when we are being challenged in all we are and all we stand for, we often feel like the pain will never end, that we’ll just be stuck in it forever. We feel like we are alone in our suffering, and that no one understands. How wrong we are, my friend.

The truth is, there are many of us who feel the same way, we just never speak up. We feel that people won’t look at us the same way when they see us in our struggling moments. Maybe that is the case, but I want to tell you something…nothing in your life happens on accident. I don’t know your worldview, what you believe, what you put your hope in. But I trust that God has an infinitely bigger plan for you than you do yourself right now.

And because nothing happens on accident, as I stated earlier…your story, however unique and tough that may be, was meant to happen just the way it did. Maybe to grow you as an individual, maybe so that you can be challenged in your beliefs, maybe so you can use your pain and lessons to help other people who are going through similar, maybe we won’t completely know why! But-we can take comfort that nothing is going to go to waste!

These waves that are tossing you about tonight, they aren’t meant to drown you, my friend. They’re meant to make you a better swimmer.

So, no. You aren’t alone tonight if you feel like you’re barely getting by. You’re not alone in all those tough moments that no one else sees, and all the pain no one else knows you endure. You’re only being made stronger by the trials that you are going through, and while each wave takes us, we can have full confidence that we will be growing through it all.

Isaiah 43:1-2 says,

“…Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
    I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
    and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
    and the flame shall not consume you.”

When we place our trust not in ourselves, but onto the God who formed us and takes care of us, we are made that much stronger by His power. The chains that once kept us from being free are released, and we can live happier, more joyful lives, trusting the Lord with all our cares. He promises you won’t drown. He will lift you up through it all.

Your trusty blogger (who seriously needs to find time to blog more),

Hannah

 

Curious about the blog this post originated from? Feel free to check it out 🙂

https://wordsmithobservations.wordpress.com/

The Company We Keep

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the many harsh yet valuable lessons I’ve learned over the course of my years on this big swirling green and blue rock called Earth. One specific lesson that has come to mind lately has been the importance of the people you choose to hang around with, and the importance that they are quality humans.

I mean, in my wise old age of 17 and three quarters I’m pretty much a life expert by now, right? I never make ANY mistakes. Whew- just at the top of my game. (I sure hope you get sarcasm).

But, in all honesty, I don’t think anyone is an “expert” on life from the get-go. You learn as you live, from experience, from happiness, from struggle, from basically everything you go through. You just grow, (if you’re open to growing). And, most importantly, if a lesson you’ve learned could help someone out, don’t hesitate to pass it along the line!

What has become so much clearer to me over the years, is what a HUGE roll the people in our everyday life play. Yes, that’s right! Your parents, your friends, your teachers, that weird mailman that gives you your Kohls coupons in the mail… they all matter. A lot more than we usually recognize.

I have heard once that you become most like the five people closest to you. Whether that be mannerisms, habits, speech, attitude, worldview, positivity..you name it. It may be a saying that holds no real scientific research or discovery, but I have noticed how much it rings true to life.

It’s not an instant change. Usually, it’s not a conscious change. either. It’s a gradual thing, that makes you look back and think to yourself, “Woah. I’m kinda different.” Essentially, what it boils down to is a little word called growth. As humans we are always soaking in what’s around us. You’ve heard how kids are “sponges” because of that very reason. I have the firm belief that we never grow out of the “sponge” stage. Everything we choose to take part in, the people we choose as our friends, the family we have, the movies we watch, the music we listen to ALL affect us as humans, whether we realize it or not.

It can either be growth into a well-rounded person, a productive citizen, a wise individual..Or it could be growth backwards, in areas that are destructive. That’s why we have to choose carefully, and guard ourselves from this. We have to remember who we are.

I had a friend. Let’s call them “Vince”… and Vince was a friend from childhood. I’ve always known Vince, always loved them like family. Vince and I were super tight. Vince was motivated, fun, and had lots of potential for the future, but kind of had the tendency to follow the crowd. Well, Vince started hanging out with some people that weren’t the best. And the changes started, little by little. First, Vince started swearing more (no judgement to anyone who swears…This just really wasn’t at all like Vince). And I think “Ok. That’s kind of weird and unexpected of them.” Then the other seemingly little things started to change, too. The movies and the shows and the music they listen to change. Then, the wild behavior started (recorded on social media, to make things worse) and I got worried (May I also add we are also teenagers). I told them lovingly, what’s going on, Vince? This isn’t like you. Are you okay? Vince said they were fine. Things go on, and eventually I confront Vince in the continued behavior that was happening, in a loving but firm way.

But Vince, instead of seeing the concern and the love of a friend, took everyone’s concern as judgement, clinging even closer to the other friends that were fostering this destructive behavior.

This was over the course of one year. It was a complete 180 from the “Vince” I knew all my life.

We need to be careful. This is a great illustration to hold tight to, to remind you just how important it is for you to choose those who will lift you up, to spend your life around. You need good friends, ones who aren’t just there for the next drink, but who are there for the ups and downs. Who aren’t afraid to tell you how things are, who will hold you accountable, and will love you through your struggle.

Although, there are other aspects to what I’m speaking of. It may not be that the people around you are leading you in the wrong direction, like Vince’s friends. It may be that the people around you are sources of negativity to you. Either way, this is harmful.

It’s harder if people that you have no choice but to be around are the ones dragging you down. None of us here on this earth get to choose our families. I was blessed for the most part with very supportive and loving parents, but not everyone is.

In those situations where the people around you feel like a rain cloud over your sunny day, try your best to guard yourself from the negativity. Don’t let it seep into your perspective. Do your best to be a light in their lives, and don’t let that pessimistic mentality sink into your thinking. I’m a very empathetic and feeling person, so I have to be careful about taking someone else’s problem and treating them as my own. I often do that with my friends or my family until the problems become a burden on myself. It’s good I care about people. BUT- there needs to be a limit to the caring. I can give advice, I can talk with them about things, but it’s up to them to make a change. That’s important for you all to remind yourself as well.

Be careful in choosing who has the privilege of knowing you, or who will have any influence in your growth as a person- positive or negative. You need people that want to see you succeed in life, and be the best person that you can be.

So, there. That’s my little spiel for the day. I feel that this is something not reflected on enough by today’s youth, or by anyone else, for that matter.

And if you’re the one that needs to do the changing, the one that is the gray cloud, or the one that seems to be going a little out of control…Be intentional in change. Realize your weakness, and make an effort for the better. It takes time, and it takes work to change for the better, but it is never impossible. The people that say “People don’t change” don’t truly know people. We all need to strive toward happiness, instead of feeling the victim of an unchanging circumstance.

P.S. I so love that I’m back on the roll of blogging, and will post some more later in the week. I think my next post will just be something fun, giving a shout out to all the awesome unrecognized songs that I jam to daily. You may not know this, but music is a huge part of me. (I kinda love it).

Thanks for reading! I want you guys to know that sometimes the topics I write, I am often preaching it to myself, as well, to remind myself of the truth. Keep learning, keep growing.

Hannah

 

P.S. Here’s a link to my blog Wordsmith Observations, where you can find my other posts! Feel free to take a look around 🙂

https://wordsmithobservations.wordpress.com/

To Everyone Growing Up…

 

It’s okay to mourn growing older. (Temporarily).

Childhood is precious and it’s special and it’s magical and imaginative.

But newsflash: those warning you of the “real world” and how awful adulthood is going to be are the ones that are doing adulthood wrong. You don’t have to lose that optimism and that light. That light and that love for life

In some ways, it is the most pure form of living.

So don’t grow up. Yes, grow. But grow responsible. Grow taller. Grow stronger. Grow in all other areas, but don’t grow cold. Don’t grow numb. Don’t grow critical. Don’t grow complacent.

Keep that best version of you that believes in something, that kid that knew they’d be a cool adult, and never let them go.

There are countless numbers of bitter people in the world that could tell you what adulthood means for them.

But listen…growing up shouldn’t be the end to your happy. It should be a continuation of it, an even freer happy. Life is all in the perspective.

Love,

Hannah (a fellow grower-upper…)

 

P.S. Here is a link to my blog Wordsmith Observations, where you can find my other posts! Feel free to take a look around 🙂

https://wordsmithobservations.wordpress.com/

Reminders for the Valentine-less (A Day After)

ers for the Valentine-less

Hey, you. Yes. I’m indeed talking to you. The poor sap hugging that greasy Taco Bell bag, while scrolling pathetically through all those cute couples’ Valentine’s Day pictures on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, whatever your form of torture may be…oh. Wait. Was I was talking about myself again?..Well, I’m sure there’s more than just one person that can empathize with this scenario, so let’s continue.

This post is to my fellow Valentine-less people out there: I know you’ve probably gone the majority of the day thinking you’re a complete loser that’s never going to find someone (especially since I only just got around to posting this little piece of insight at 10 o’clock at night)….but hey. At least you’re going to be able to see this eventually.  And at least we’ll all gain some insight on what could have been a pretty discouraging day, overall.

Now…first thing we have in common? We are single on a day society particularly likes throwing it in our faces. But let’s not be bitter, shall we? Valentine’s Day is actually a very good thing, it just takes some patience, perspective, and survival skills that rival MacGyver’s. No biggie, right?!

Wrong.

But, look at it this way- all that doesn’t have to be a bad thing! As a kid at school said today, “Valentine’s Day is Independence Day for a single person!” Of course, we all thought it was a corny joke at the time, but ya know. I’m rolling with it.

So, to ease your pain a bit, let’s go over some of the very important and helpful reasons why it might actually be kinda sorta a good thing that you’re still as single as a Pringle on Valentine’s Day this year! *insert timely cringe at my own jokes*

The Economic Benefits

Well, for starters, you didn’t have to go buy anyone chocolates today, now did you? So, yayy! You aren’t even more broke than you were before! God’s had mercy on you and especially your wallet. Looks like you won’t have to resort to the life of a hobo just yet!

Less Stress

It’s funny…life is a lot less complicated when you only have to worry about yourself and your twelve cats.

But- joking aside, it is true. Some people go for years and years from person to person, not truly knowing who they are without someone else. I’m grateful that I have this time just for me, myself, and I to figure out who I am and what I need in someone else. Truth is, you’re just learning how to make it on your own. It’s a life skill that’ll always come in handy. Another reason why you should never down yourself for being single. You don’t need someone else to make you happy. If you think that way, you’ll be on a constant emotional roller coaster.

Cultivating Friendships

You won’t have the temptation to overlook all your friends for your significant other, which is something I see all too much.

Actually, this will cultivate friendships and you will have even more time for friends and family, which is always a good thing, as long as you pick the right people to spend your time with.

Pursuit of Dreams/ Less Distraction

And now that you have more time on your hands, what’s holding you back on that dream of yours? Time management is everything and positive thinking doesn’t hurt, either. Focus all that extra attention on what will take you far in life. So what if that person you were talking to probably doesn’t like you back? You’re stronger than letting that get to you and you’ll turn it into a great thing.

Ultimately, this could mean less distraction for schooling, for work, for life in general.

And…Last but Not Least! Preparation for Your Significant Other

Having that wait and anticipation for the perfect guy or girl to come into your life will make it that much more meaningful. Look at all the reasons I stated before…ALL of that is preparing you for that one person that’s going to turn your life upside down, in a good way.

So, don’t ever beat yourself up about being single. Even on Valentine’s Day. It stinks, but just remember- you never know who’s going to walk into your life, so be patient, and always remember to have a sense of humor about it!

Welp, folks. That’s about all the Valentine’s Day talk I can take for today! Thanks for reading and make sure to like, follow, comment, whatever you all feel like doing in this situation.

Your blogger,

Hannah

 

P.S. I know this is the day after Valentines Day that you’ll be seeing this one on the Success Inspirers World, but, trust me… it holds just as much significance as it would yesterday! I hope you enjoyed, and I’ll put a link down to my blog where the original post I published yesterday is located. Go ahead and look around, like, follow, comment, whatever your little heart desires and I’d like to get around to seeing your work, as well! Thanks again! 

https://wordsmithobservations.wordpress.com/

Growth, Trees, and what? Patience??

 

This was written two days ago in the morning, looking out on the wonderful landscape of my high school campus. Insight is always helpful when starting off your day:

“The trees are winding and twisting every which way. They grow however they grow, effortlessly. Without a care in the world, they trust the tale of time to show them who they’ll be.

Patience. The tree has patience like no other. It cannot see itself growing. Actually, to HIM it seems like he’s forever rooted in one place. With no change to come.

But slowly, it realizes that there is meaning to the life even the smallest and the lowest of us are granted. Just takes trust.”

dscn1964
These are some pictures I have taken at my high school’s campus last year, in the founding year of the school.

tree

 

Your trusty ol’ blogger signing out,

Hannah

(Here is a link to the site where the more in-depth original post is located! Look around, like, follow, whatever your little heart desires and I can hopefully take a look at your blogs, too!)

https://wordsmithobservations.wordpress.com/

Hoodies, Apple Cider, and Campfires Galore (A Welcoming to Fall)

A post by Success Inspirers’ World Team member

“And the sun took a step back, the leaves lulled themselves to sleep and Autumn was awakened.”

Raquel Franco

It’s no surprise that I’m just a little bit happy completely PSYCHED for fall, and seeing as how last week was officially the first day of this lovely season, it’s only appropriate to have an appreciation post, no?

But first, Imma be real with you. Fall hasn’t always had the same attraction to me as it does now. Actually, I never really had much of an opinion on the season until I had gotten older. I’m an only child (except for an adoptive brother that moved out very early in my life) so fall wasn’t highlighted by stories of raking leaves and jumping in with all 11 of my siblings. It was more or less just cold weather and pumpkins…and lots of em.

However, over the years, by and by, I’ve developed a real and deep appreciation for fall in all its glory. It’s easy to say I’ve slowly fallen in love with everything it has to offer. I love the crisp leaves that rustle underneath my shoes as I walk, I love the rich splendor and color that meet my eyes as I walk outdoors, I love how nature falls in the most beautiful way possible during this time and I’m left in awe.

There is so much to be happy about if you take the time to appreciate the little things. There’s fresh apple cider during a good barn party, the pies that you and your friends will make together, the sports game you will watch in the evenings while bundled up in a fuzzy blanket to lessen the cold, and it just seems like the world starts to slow down for a bit, even if for the slightest amount of time, in the fall. You get to appreciate aspects of life a lot more.

Let’s go ahead and list a few more of my favorite parts of fall that we can look forward to in the up and coming months.

Ahem..

#1 – Thanksgiving (I live in the United States)

For real, though, do I even really have to elaborate on this one?? Just the thought of Thanksgiving is making my mouth water. Pies, stuffing, casseroles, yeah. You get the picture. It’s one big fiasco of good eating, especially in my family, that has country roots. I’m convinced that growing up in the country helps homemaking skills.

#2 – Chilly Weather!

Alright. You can stop giving me that look. I’m feeling the judgment radiating through the screen before I even publish this! I know that chilly weather isn’t always that much fun at the time, but compared to our summer scorch fests, I’d take a fuzzy scarf and beanie any day over slowly boiling in Vitamin D, thank you very much.

#3 – Scented Candles

I’m sincerely sorry. I’m going to give the common girl answer (don’t worry, there will be more of those to come!) and say scented candles. Because, really, who can’t resist the smell of sugar cookies and pumpkin pie wafting from a melted wax? Name the person, and I will be shocked.

#4 – Cappuccinos

See? I warned you. We’ve got another cliche answer on our hands, ladies and gents. You know what, though? I’m going to own it and wear this cliche answer with pride. Cappuccinos in the fall time = the perfect combination. The cold weather mixed with a good steaming cup of joe is the BEST way to start the day off right.

#5 –  Campfires

Fall is one of the best times of the year to do campfires with friends and family. Why? Well, my friends, I’ll tell you…by fall, all the evil little mutant bugs that enjoy making our lives miserable will be dying off *YAY* and bug bites become much less common. This makes for a much happier Hannah when it comes time to gather round the fire and tell scary stories.

#6 – MY BIRTHDAY!

Eyyy, well lookie there. My birthday is in fall, too! And if that’s not a reason to like fall at least a little more, I don’t know what is!

#7 – The Beautiful Foliage

As I said before, nature is at one of its most beautiful parts of Autumn. Photography will be a cinch since everywhere you look the world will be your own personal canvas of color to capture.

Well, it’s ten o’clock at night as I am writing this, and I think I’ve officially finished up with my little nod toward fall. I know this isn’t what I normally write (I normally don’t write in list format)…only if it’s an award post, but trust me, I’m getting used to junior year’s work and am starting to have much more time for blogging. So, hold on to your seats, folks! There will be more material to come very soon

What are some of YOUR favorite parts of Autumn? List them all down in the comment box! I would be curious to see everything!

In conclusion, thank you sticking around to read through this lil’ ol’ welcoming to fall. I wish you all a very lovely day and a HUNDRED cappuccinos and bonfires in your near future!

What?! It’s the best blessing I could fathom.

Until next time,

Hannah

P.S. Here’s a link back to my original blog Wordsmith Observations. If you want to know any more about me or my blog- check out my “About” page!

https://wordsmithobservations.wordpress.com/

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