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Confidence

  • Articles, Confidence, Music

    June Playlist (Pride Month)

    Pride Playlist
    (parental advisory)

    1. Girls/Girls/Boys – Panic! At The Disco
    – this is a song basically about how a girl and guy can be bisexual. I really like the beat and it is a very catchy song.

    2. Honey – Kehlani
    – I love Kehlani!! She is an amazing artist and this song is literally amazing. It’s basically her talking about her feelings towards other women and how she thinks they are beautiful. It’s a soft beautiful song and it will never not be beautiful in my opinion.

    3. Same Love- Macklemore X Mary Lambert
    – In this song, Macklemore tells a story about someone dealing with coming out and events that have occurred after they did come out. It tells that you can accept yourself if others don’t. Mary LAmbert’s vocals are wonderful also she sounds like an angel. (top on my list!!)

    4. Girls – Girl In Red
    – In ‘GIRLS” girl in red talks about hiding her feelings for other girls and debating if she should hide them and how she wrapped them up inside. She expresses how she really feels this way but she shouldn’t and she can’t help her feelings and that it’s not a phase. overall, a rocking song.

    5. Curious – Hayley Kiyoko
    – This song is a hit from the beginning to the end. She talks about another female companion that moves on to a guy but she’s curious if she is really happy in that relationship and if it’s serious, She also brings up their old times and old things they used to do but in the end she says she can handle it.

    6. Girls Like Girls – Hayley Kiyoko
    – This is yet another Hayley Kiyoko hit! She basically is saying that girls like girls just like boys do and people should just be okay with it. Which, I totally agree. Girls can like Girls just like Boys can and it shouldn’t be a problem.

    7. Born This Way – Lady Gaga
    – Now I’m sure many people know why this is on this list and it doesn’t need an explanation but for the people who don’t I’ll gladly explain. Lady Gaga as the icon she expresses that we are all the same girl, boy, gay, straight, etc. We are all the same and being apart of the LGBTQ+ community isn’t a choice, it’s simply the way we were born.

    8. Bloom – Troye Sivan
    – This is just a great LGBTQ love song that just gets your blood pumping. The lyrics, beat, his voice is the perfect package deal.

    9. HIM – Sam Smith
    – “HIM” is a song about Sam talking to the ‘holy father’ about his secret. The secret about him being gay and how he can’t that he is in love with another man. He also mentions that shouldn’t mean that God shouldn’t love him any different and that he hopes he doesn’t hate him for ut and how god shouldn’t care for him for it.

    10. Cool For The Summer – Demi Lovato
    – In this song, Demi is talking about how this summer she is exploring her sexuality and trying new things. People shouldn’t be scared or ashamed to explore their sexuality.

    11. What I Need – Hayley Kiyoko X Kehlani
    – Two beautiful artists coming together making great music is what this track is. They both express their love and needs from their female lovers. It is a great song just to dance and sing along to and I’d be surprised if you do listen to it and don’t do any of those things.

    12. Bonus Track: Dancing Queen – ABBA
    – not an LGBTQ+ song but come on.. this song will is a HIT to play at any place or party.

  • Confidence, Fashion, GirlSpring.com, Lifestyle

    A Peek into the World of Pageants: Miss Alabama Outstanding Teen

    The girls I’ve met through Miss Alabama and Miss America’s Outstanding Teen organization have become some of my dearest friends. I just competed for the title of Miss Alabama’s Outstanding Teen. Although I did not walk away with the pageant title, I had the best weekend of my life, and I got to witness one of my dearest friends getting crowned.  The weekend layout is super busy, but it’s a good busy. The phases of competition include a private interview, fitness, talent, evening gown, and an onstage question.

    Image of Sophia Porrill at a pageant.

    Months before competition begins all of the girls involved meet at orientation.  It was such a daunting day for me, being my first orientation. Everyone I met the day of orientation was so nice and understanding. Everyone arrives in shifts. First, you turn in all of the paperwork and then you head back to get headshots taken for the judges’ books.  After you get your headshot taken you get sized for your fitness outfit. After you get done with all of that, then you wait for the meeting to get started.  During the meeting, we draw which number we will compete with and the director goes over the rules.

    Two months later we check in the Friday night before the pageant.  Friday night is such a crazy night! Over half of the girls interview on Friday night, then the last few interview on Saturday morning.  Also Friday night you practice your talent, run through fitness, and you learn the opening and closing numbers. I interviewed on Saturday morning, which in retrospect was a good idea for me.  At orientation, everyone picked their spots, and when picking their spots they found out when they competed. I liked the order I competed and I think it was best suited for me.

    On Saturday, all of the girls competed in the preliminary competitions, and then on Sunday, we found out who the top 20 were.  Although my name was not called for the top 20, I still had the best weekend. No matter win or lose, rain or shine, the girls I competed with on the Miss Alabama’s Outstanding Teen stage will forever be my dearest friends.  The directors and volunteers at the Miss Alabama’s Outstanding Teen pageant are some of the absolute best people I’ve ever met. They work so hard to make sure that everything goes off almost perfectly, and they are some of the most hardworking people ever. I am so thankful that I got to work with them at the pageant. To say that the Miss Alabama’s Outstanding Teen organization shaped me into who I am today is an understatement. When I think back to the past year, I am so happy that I got to do it with the best girls ever.

    Want to know more about Pageants? Check out “The Life of a Pageant Girl!”

  • College, Confidence, Dating, GirlSpring.com, Goals, Mental Health

    From Girl to Woman: 10 Things I Wish I Had Known Before I was 20

    There was something significant about the year that I turned 20 in which a lot of things clicked and finally made sense. I realized that I actually don’t know everything, and things could have gone a bit easier for me had I listened to those with my best interests in mind. Learning from one’s mistakes is a big part of life, which is why I have made a list of 10 lessons that I have already learned for you:

    !. It is O.K. to ask for what you believe that you deserve.

    It is easy to get taken advantage of when you are young and naïve. If you have a feeling that you are being treated unfairly, speak up. Whether it is by a teacher, parent, boss, friends or whoever, do not hesitate to calmly say, “I feel like I am receiving the recognition or treatment that I deserve, and here are the reasons why.” People are not always going to have your feelings or interests in mind, so do not be afraid to remind them to be considerate of you.

    2. What is on your resume is important.

    Now, colleges definitely take your GPA and standardized test scores into consideration during the application process, but your resume is what makes you stand out from the thousands of other kids that are just as much or more qualified as you are. You will have a resume that will be continuously updated for the rest of your working life. Therefore, do not hesitate to start getting involved and take advantage of the activities your school and community provide. Even if you spend your free time working, that reflects your time commitment and work ethic on your resume. College admission and jobs want to see how YOU utilize your talents and time other than schoolwork.

    3. Take care of your vehicle. Just do it.

    This may seem like a lame piece of advice, and hopefully you will not stop reading after this, but if you own a car… please take care of it. Keep up with scheduled oil changes and know what kind of gas your car uses. Little things like that will keep your car running for much longer and save you a lot of money and tears. I destroyed the transmission on my first car because I did not know that diesel fuel was only for special vehicles like semi-trucks. It was expensive and embarrassing.

    You are so lucky to even be able to own a vehicle as a teenager, so do not take it for granted ladies.

    4. Save money… seriously.

    What is obvious to some people is a lesson for the rest of us. I may have had a job of some sort since I was 16 years old, but I never saved a dime of those paychecks. Understanding monetary value came late for me, and for years I would just spend my money on every whim without thinking about how it could benefit me in the future. People are not lying when they say hindsight is 20/20. In fact, go to a bank as soon as you can and open a savings account. It takes about 20 minutes to open one and you can begin by saving 25% of every check or allowance you receive. You will thank yourself one day.

    5. Friends and family are more important than boyfriends/girlfriends. Period.

    Your first love is a great thing. Whether or not you have your first love interest during your teenage years, it is critical to remember what is actually important. Your first serious boyfriend/girlfriend/love interest is probably not going to last. Anything can happen, and who will you turn to when things go sour and you have neglected everyone else important in your life? Friends and family are the most consistent forms of relationships, even if the people who fill those roles change. Hopefully, you will always have a support system, but you are not always going to have a significant other.

    6.  Remember that you are not the center of the universe.

    Yes, it is necessary to set goals and strive towards whatever form of self-actualization you desire for yourself. Still, don’t forget that you are sharing this planet with billions of other people. Being courteous and kind to others will always set you apart from the masses. Remind yourself to ask other people how they are doing and make an effort to remember names. Send a thank you note after birthdays or holidays. Show people that you care.

    7. Don’t forget about personal hygiene please.

    Maybe it’s just me, but I tend to avoid those who knock me off of my feet every time I’m within a 3-foot radius of them. Dirty fingernails, stinky sweat and evil breath should disappear as soon as playground days are over. There is just simply no excuse anymore unless you are being active or doing manual labor. Cleaning yourself up when you go in public is just good practice. If I am too lazy to shower (which happens more than I would like to admit) I spray in some dry shampoo in my hair, put deodorant on, brush my teeth and spritz on some perfume before walking out of the door.

    8. Now is better than later when it comes to failure.

    It is inevitable that you are going to make mistakes and experience failure. However, the way you go about these experiences is what determines self-improvement. Very few people are just handed success and happiness, and adolescence is the best time to start figuring out what you are able to do. It will benefit you more in the future if you go ahead and discover your limitations and talents. Go try out for the debate team. Who knows- maybe you are a natural-born lawyer, or maybe your talents lie elsewhere.

    9. Don’t sweat the small stuff- life is all about ups and downs.

    Every person on this planet has problems that are relevant to their own circumstances and individualism. However, try not to dwell too much on the negative. Life is supposed to suck sometimes, because that is what makes it feel so great when things are actually going right. A wise Delta agent once approached me while I was crying at the airport after a terrible day and said that “life likes to kick you in the butt one day so you can wake up stronger the next”. Then she proceeded to waive my bag fee. Even small acts of kindness like that show that good still exists in the world. Just don’t forget that life really does have a way of working out sometimes, despite how grim it may seem in the moment.

    10. Learn when it is your fault and how to admit it.

    Some people never learn how to recognize their own fault in a situation. Growth as a person stems from self-awareness. Therefore, learning from one’s own mistakes is a part of that process. People tend to blame others because it is easier than experiencing the consequences of their actions. Next time you receive a bad grade or hurt someone’s feelings, maybe stop and think about what you could have done to avoid that reaction instead of making up excuses. Once I started telling myself that I could have tried more or that joke was too far, I began to stop repeating those mistakes. Acknowledging your faults and weaknesses is the foundation of self-improvement.

  • Articles, Body Image, Confidence, Fashion, Home Life, Mental Health

    How to Turn a Bad Day Around

    Girl down in the dumps

    There are lots of ways for a day to go bad: school, bad break ups, and even family drama can turn a standard day into a nightmare. Sometimes life can get really frustrating to the point where you just want to stay in bed for the rest of the day. Through self-care, like this routine on www.girlspring.com, you can feel good in the long run, sometimes all you need is an instant pick-me-up to straighten out the day. 

    Here’s a list of things you can do to get your bad day back on track.

    Have a good laugh

    Laughing is hard, especially if you’re not in the mood for it – but sometimes that’s all you need to drive the negative vibes away. There is even scientific evidence to back this up, with NBC News reporting that smiling can trick the brain into happiness. The news site reported that smiling “spurs a chemical reaction in the brain, releasing certain hormones including dopamine and serotonin.” The hormones you need to make you happy. If you feel like you need a quick chuckle, Buzzfeed is full of jokes, as is Tumblr, Reddit and Twitter. There are many ways to pick yourself up and a quick internet search could put a smile back on your face in no time.

    Exercise

    We know what you’re thinking: who needs exercise? It’s tedious, sweaty and an absolute chore. Well, who said anything about push-ups? Exercise can be something as fun as ice skating, swimming or biking around the neighborhood. Exercise is a refreshing way to boost your mood. Very Well Health explains that you only need to do 30 minutes a day to get the benefits, particularly when it comes to improving your mood. It can even be something as simple as walking the dog.

    Wear your favorite clothes

    Clothes are like a second skin, and can affect or even reflect your mood for the day. A study by the University of Queensland showed that we either dress how we’d like to feel, or, more often than not, how we’d like others to think we’re feeling. This is why going out can be such a chore, especially if you’re having a bad day. The trick is to have go-to clothes for going out and clothes for staying at home. If you are at home, relax in the comfiest clothes you can. Sometimes all you need to do is put on your favorite comfy pants to lift your mood. The stretchy bootcut yoga pants on Woman Within are made from a soft knit material and have an elastic waist in order to provide maximum comfort – the definition of home relaxation. The clothes you wear at home should be easy to slip into and you shouldn’t have to worry about how they will fit your body.

    Meet friends

    On the other hand you could go out. And why do it alone when you can invite a couple of friends? Go out and see a movie – or invite them over for some pizza. This isn’t about forgetting what ruined your day, but creating new memories that will top any bad experience. That way when you look back, the first thing you’ll remember is how much of a good day it was.

    Treat yourself

    Craving for some sugar? Get a tub of ice cream. Something greasy? Order pizza. Or maybe it’s been a while since you did your nails. Treating yourself doesn’t have to be expensive. There are plenty of things to do at home, like a skin-care routine, watch TV or take a long nap that will help lift your mood. In the chaos of the life, sometimes the best thing you can do is find some quality time for yourself. It is a good way to recharge your batteries, especially after a really bad day.

  • Articles, Confidence, GirlSpring.com

    A Mother’s Day Collaborative

    Mother's Day

    In preparation for Mother’s Day, we asked members of GirlSpring’s Springboarders teen leadership group to write about their mothers through some writing prompts. We were pretty impressed with the answers and we want to meet these moms because they sound pretty awesome! 

    My mom is special because…

    My mom is special because she does not talk to a lot of people, but everyone likes her. She doesn’t eat the most, but she’s addicted to coffee. She doesn’t say a lot, but she make me laugh. She doesn’t always get the jokes I tell, but she smiles anyway. She doesn’t like the songs I listen to, but she plays them anyway. My mom is special because she tries to do everything. Alex’ah Boone

    My mom is special because she is very smart and always willing to learn. My mom can easily pick up on a skill and I admire that about her. Although she can’t help me with my algebra and French, she knows so much about the world and facts about things that shock me to this day. Liana Mozee

    Even though all moms are special, I think that my mom is extra special (I might be a little biased). She’s truly one of the smartest, strongest, and most patient people I know. I’ll admit that at times, I can be a lot to deal with. I’m moody and indecisive and extremely messy. Yet, on top of all her other responsibilities, my mom is always there when I need her. How she does it is beyond me. My mom really is the person I can rely on most in my life. Rachel Reese

    I think my mom is special because she is very loving and caring about letting me and my sisters express ourselves freely. Although, she is very religious she still loves me no different than my sisters and treats us the same. With it being three teenagers in one house with completely different personalities, she still shows us the same amount of discipline, care, love and of course support. She pushes us to be ourselves and follow our dreams and I wouldn’t trade her for the world. Brittney Hawkins

    My mother would rather have a _______ than flowers and chocolate 

    My mother would rather have a soundproof bedroom,than flowers an chocolate.That is because my mom loves her family so much,that she allows the children to share their loud ideas instead of shutting down their creativity. She wants the room, to be soundproof because she likes her peace and quiet when she’s thinking about the ones she gave birth to. Instead I will give her something else because despite all the screaming children, she loves when we make her laugh. Alex’ah Boone

    My mom would rather have art than flowers and chocolate because, as an artist herself, she deeply appreciates the beauty and meaning behind art, as well as the care put into making it. She loves to look at art in art museums and galleries, so art would be a great gift for her. Chloe Bloodworth

    If I were a mom for a day

    If I were mom for a day, besides telling everyone what to do, I would cook my favorite dinner, which is breakfast. I would cook enough for a football team just because I can. After I do all the cooking, I will make my children clean it all up. I would then start a how to be a cool mom instagram page. Alex’ah Boone

    If I were mom for a day: I’d do everything the same (or try to). I would love my kids unconditionally and nonstop, I would care for all their needs and wants, and I would make sure they live a life where they will love all and themselves as much I’ll love them (but of course I’ll be 5x worse, because my moms definitely a pro at this). Liana Mozee

    The best advice my mom ever gave me is…

    The best advice my mom has given me is to have love and respect for myself. She constantly reminds me of this and always has which has shaped me to the girl I am today. When I was younger I didn’t really understand the meaning behind it but now and the more I learn and grow I do. This one thing will forever be with me and it is the best advice she has ever given me. Brittney Hawkins

    Although it might sound cliche, the best advice that my mother has given me would be to believe in myself. Even though my mom has always been there to advocate for me when others might think I’m a lost cause, she’s also quick to remind me that she won’t always be around to defend me. She often says that if I believe in myself, everyone else will too (and if they don’t, it’s their loss). My mom constantly encourages to be confident in myself and chase my dreams. Rachel Reese

    If I could make a meal for my mom…

    If I were to make a special Mother’s Day dinner, I would make scallops and crab cakes. My mom adores seafood! For dessert, I would make lemon vanilla ice cream and I would giver her black licorice as an extra treat. Chloe Bloodworth

    If I could plan what to do for Mother’s Day with unlimited budget…

    If I had the money, I would take my mom to Paris for a Mother’s Day week trip. She loves the city and has said she could’ve stayed in Paris for weeks. I would take her to eat chocolate mousse and see many art museums. Chloe Bloodworth


    Write a poem about your mom…

    My mom controls my life like no other
    Only she does it with love and care 
    The way she make sure I’m okay at school and home
    Her calm voice when she disagrees with something dumb I did 
    Everything she does makes me better, and it’s clear to see 
    Ruling has never been so amazing for me

    Liana Mozee

    What’s the most poignant memory you have of your mom

    My mom has always been a super fun and outgoing person. Nothing fazes her and she’s always willing to put herself out there even in situations where others would be uncomfortable. I remember in fourth grade, going to carol at a retirement home during Christmas with my Girl Scout troop. All of us were really nervous and hesitant to sing. When it seemed as though all hope for a successful performance was lost, my mother swooped in and saved the day. She started to sing and, soon enough, everyone joined her (even the audience). By the end of the performance, I felt like my mom was a superhero. She really saved the day! Rachel Reese

    What is a life changing moment you’ve had with your mom?

    One of the most life turning moments with my mom was when I was placed and released from the hospital. Me being placed in the hospital was a big turning point in both of our lives, and when I got out we both just put everything on the table and even though it was a tough situation to deal with it weirdly brought us closer. Ever since then I’ve felt like I could tell her mostly any and everything. She has the biggest role in my life and I don’t know what I would do without her.  Brittney Hawkins

    Readers — how would you answer these questions? If you haven’t gotten your mom a gift yet, what about writing these out with your own answers and framing it? What a great gift! Need other gift ideas?

    Check out https://www.girlspring.com/mothers-day-gift-guide/

  • Confidence

    Please Don’t Tell Me to Smile

    Please Don't Tell Me To Smile

    Please Don’t Tell Me to Smile

    My Thoughts on Being Approachable

    Approachable. Is that what I need to be?

    No more of my time will be spent agonizing over comments that I am snobby, bitchy, and unapproachable. However, I think I’m over that now.

    I’ve been told that I come off as distant – uninterested in getting closer.

    The truth is, I don’t like attention from people I don’t like. That is what I’m uninterested in. It doesn’t appeal to me. I value my privacy and my space, and I’m prepared to give it up for a select few. It’s not because I think I’m better than anyone.

    I’m nice. As well as polite, curious, considerate and understanding. If you talk to me, you will see that I’m far from cruel. Anyone who wishes can approach me, and I’ll treat them with kindness.

    However, I admire and encourage attention from a select few.

    Why is this wrong?

    Why do I need to make myself available to the world, or to anyone who wishes?

    I am not a 24/7 gas station. I’m a person.

    Nor am I the door to a home – open, closed, locked; difficult, pliable.

    I don’t exist only to tend a doorstep.

    I don’t need to be decorated and passive.

    Show me a man under scrutiny for being unapproachable. Or is that unnecessary, since he is always the one who approaches?

    He walks, he chooses, and I sit?

    I will manage the door to myself however I wish.

    Most of all I wish to never be a door.

    I am a walking, living thing.

  • Body Image, Confidence, Health

    My Fitness Journey

    My Fitness Journey

    Learning the Difference Between Self-Sabotage and Self-Care

    When I was 14 I decided to make a change. Chubby and tired of being labeled “the chubby friend”, I started a 30-day workout video called “30 Day Shred” by Julian Michaels. I also downloaded the My Fitness Pal app to count calories. All of this was completely new to me and I had zero knowledge of working out or healthy eating.

    However, I did know that the Google search results on “how to lose 20 pounds in a week” were not working.

    Within the first week of counting calories and working out, I noticed results. Because I was in the ninth grade, my metabolism was probably in its prime. I just needed to put in a little effort because of bad genes. Thanks, Mom and Dad. Without realizing it, I lost 30 pounds in a month! Often, I lost motivation and did not want to work out, but watching the scale go down helped me to persevere.

    If you know anything about counting calories – you know that once you factor your weight loss, it lowers your calorie intake and so on. Ultimately, this created an obsessive behavior. As the weight continued dropping, I managed to still see myself as the chubby, 130-pound girl I was determined to erase.

    I was miserable. I constantly thought about food, and wouldn’t hang out with friends if I hadn’t worked out. If I missed one day of working out, I felt like I had gained 5 pounds. If I ate more than 2 slices of pizza I would take laxatives to make up for it. After diving straight into an incredibly unhealthy mentality, I didn’t eat cake on my birthday because I was afraid it would make me fat. I was afraid of food and terrified of gaining any weight.

    This went on for a while until I was miserable enough to confess to my sister – which wasn’t much of a confession because all I ever talked about was food and working out so she had already noticed.

    My mentality was so messed up. I started to research on maintaining my weight and tried to find stories about people who had gone through the same thing. I found nothing.

    It wasn’t until I came across a girl on Instagram who had just finished a workout guide called BBG. Grace had abs and that was what I was striving for. I worked hard and wanted abs to prove it. So I started doing BBG and I did not like it, at all. I thought the workouts were boring because I was a runner. I didn’t finish BBG but I continued to follow Grace and her fitness journey. BBG lead her to fall in love with lifting weights and cured her unhealthy relationship with food.

    Finally, I found my solution to this madness. Although the weight room was unfamiliar to me, I threw myself in. To be honest, I was clueless and felt like a man. Eventually, I  learned the correct form, put my headphones in and pretended to know what I was doing – using the Nike Training app as my guide. I fell in love with the gym. It became my stress reliever and my favorite part of the day. My body was sore, but seriously who doesn’t like that feeling? I felt so strong but just wanted to transform my body.

    Weight lifting resolved my eating issues. I fell in love with healthy eating and learned how to balance my meals and fuel my body according to my new active lifestyle. I stopped counting calories and solely focused on how my body felt and the nutrients I was consuming.

    It is incredible the way my body has transformed. Now, I workout 4-6 days a week and love it. Also, I’m much stronger and am learning a lot about form and technique with the help of Youtube and Instagram. It is crazy what you can accomplish if you just change your mentality. 

    Be healthy and take care of your body! WE can do anything. Girl power!