From time to time, I write to my teenage granddaughter. This post goes to a special fourteen-year-old I love.
To a large extent, a person’s accomplishments depend on the self-confidence enjoyed by that individual. A terrible, awful, frightening truth guarantees that choices about building or damaging self-confidence must be made repeatedly. Every single day, you will choose to see yourself as a victim or as a seeker of growth and adventure. Since one’s past can usually predict the future, let’s consider two memories I have from your first fourteen years ~
On many occasions when you were young, you put on dramatizations for Grandpa and me. You showed no hesitation. You fainted, wept, raged, smiled and enthused as you frequently changed characters. It was all I could do to keep up with you. Did a video slow you down? Not for a second. You relished showing off in front of the camera. I never saw a hint of shyness.
Fast forward to last year when you decided to make the Bowie Band. You had been told that summer camp would be grueling, long, hot, and hard. You did not flinch. Not only did you participate in a very demanding camp; you engaged in optional exercises and movement drills. You faced tryouts with courage, marched onto the field at football games, and made first chair in the freshman band. The fourteen year old before us today stands tall.
I’ve watched you learn and I’ve seen you grow. On many occasions, I’ve been thrilled at your ability to walk through frightening and disagreeable situations such as moving to a new home, finishing your cob oven, and speaking at your Silver Award ceremony. These positive experiences now become resources on which you can build.
As you continue your life’s journey, you know there will be additional challenges. I suggest two ways you can accelerate your growth.
The first will be to remember and acknowledge your many successes. Remind yourself of your triumphs. Build on your strengths and growth.
The second action involves going the extra mile by engaging in self-talk. The conversations you hold inside your own head carry more importance than any pep talk anyone else can provide. Your family, teachers and friends believe in you. Our convictions will never be enough. Your own self-encouragement will be the extra mile that will make astounding differences.
Based on your first fourteen years, I predict that you will increasingly become a giant surprise to yourself. I see a strong, resilient young woman with enough inner strength to develop a rod of steel that permeates your consciousness. Use words of enthusiasm tainted with love and purpose to continue your attainment of self-confidence. Your choices about what you say to yourself will make all the difference. You Go Girl!