Long time, no post, but I'm back today with a very special one for you all. I was recently provided with a copy of Naomi Katz's book, 'Beautiful: Being an Empowered Young Woman', and wanted to share with you, the amazing lessons and advice I took away from reading it.
Naomi Katz is the founder and director of the 'Beautiful Project', which works to enhance the self-confidence of women and girls. She is also a teacher and writer, who has had over 15 years of experience in working with girls, and thus holds many pearls of wisdom which she imparts to young women through 'Beautiful: Being an Empowered Young Woman'. Katz discusses the different issues young women encounter during adolescence, and seeks to empower girls in dealing with these problems. Such problems include issues with body image, the media, relationships, and peer pressure, to name a few. Each chapter covers a different issue and is accompanied by excerpts by real young women, who share their opinions and experiences navigating the adolescent world. Such excerpts and Katz's invaluable advice, illustrate to teenage girls that they are not alone in dealing with these problems, and that there are ways to manage them.
One of my favourite chapters in 'Beautiful: Being an Empowered Young Woman' is Chapter One, titled 'That Crazy Teenage World'. Katz's anecdotes about her adolescent experience, and her exploration of the different problems teenagers face, such as stress and seeking to fit in, really align with some of the experiences I encountered during high school, and are still relevant to my life today. Her tips for managing these issues, such as dealing with stress, are extremely useful for all young girls who are attempting to make sense of the teenage world and their place in it. 'Beautiful: Being an Empowered Young Woman', is therefore the perfect guide for adolescents.
Reading the various excerpts from teenage girls and learning about their own experiences as young females, really helps in understanding that all people have their insecurities and can struggle with fitting in or developing their own sense of identity. This really helps in realising that these difficulties are experienced by so many others, thus you are not alone. No one is perfect, and everyone is going through their own struggles.
A piece of advice that really stuck with me from the book is that to really get through hard times and to combat all the influences which seek to change you, like the media, friends, and others, you must be "true to the self in your heart" (pg 25). I know this sounds a bit cliché, but I think it is so important, and it is a theme which is recurring throughout the book. Whether you are faced with the problems of peer pressure or seeking to fit into a friendship group, the most important thing you can do is listen to yourself and your heart, and do what you think is right.
'Beautiful: Being an Empowered Young Woman' is such a powerful and inspiring book, which really helped shape my perspective on my self and the way I see the world and the different issues that confront me. I would definitely recommend it to you guys and I hope that you can take from it what I did. Make sure to also check out the 'Beautiful Project' website, to discover how YOU can help other girls empower and strengthen themselves.
'Beautiful: Being an Empowered Young Woman' can be purchased on Amazon, but you can also preview the first chapter on the 'Beautiful Project' website!
Thanks for Reading,