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Kayla Tandy

Maintaining a healthy self-esteem

Do you know what self-esteem means? To us, it means valuing and respecting yourself. If you have a healthy self-esteem, you feel good about yourself as a person and are able to think positively and deal better with stress. If you have low self-esteem, you may feel bad about yourself a lot of the time, which isn’t much fun. 

Here to tell us how she maintains a healthy self-esteem is Kayla Tandy. Kayla is a typical teen, just like lots of our readers. She knows that great ways to boost your self-esteem include taking steps to be healthy, getting support from friends, and finding things you’re good at and enjoy. To learn more, read Kayla’s interview.

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How old are you?

I’m 16.

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What are your interests and hobbies?

I enjoy field hockey and playing the bagpipes.

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Taking care of yourself can certainly help boost your self-esteem. What do you do to stay active?

When I’m not playing field hockey, I work out and run on a daily basis. 

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Eating healthy is important, too. What’s your favorite healthy snack?

I love green apples with Asiago cheese and peanut butter.

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What does good self-esteem mean to you?

To me, it means having confidence and accepting who you are.

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How do you deal with stressful situations?

When I’m in a stressful situation, I call my best friend Emily and explain exactly how I am feeling. Emily and I usually talk about it and make a plan for how we can make the situation less stressful. Most of the time, just getting things off my chest and hearing Emily reassure me that she’s by my side no matter what is enough to relieve most of the stress.

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What qualities do you look for in your friends, and why are these qualities important?

For me, loyalty, kindness, humor, and positivity are really important, because keeping uplifting, genuinely good people in your life not only makes you strive to become a better person, but keeps you beautiful on the inside. 

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What are some things you like about yourself?

I like my ability to speak my mind and stand up for myself and what I stand for, as well as my ability to make others smile.

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When you start to doubt yourself, how do you turn it around?

When I start to doubt myself, I remember why I made the decision to do what I’m doing and use that as motivation.

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What advice would you give to other girls to help them think more positively about themselves?   

I would advise others to avoid overthinking their flaws and focusing on negative thoughts. Instead, concentrate your energy on doing more of what makes you happy and betters you as a person.

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That’s great advice! Why do you think it’s often so hard for girls to think positively about themselves?

I think it is difficult for girls to think positively about themselves because there is a constant self-comparison to other girls, whether it be their clothes or how pretty they are. This comparison becomes toxic to a girl’s self-confidence. 

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Take it from Kayla, surrounding yourself with positive people can help you feel good about yourself. Plus, healthy relationships are fun! Your support system is always there for you and so are we. To learn more about building a healthy self-esteem, visit our section on Your feelings.

Content last reviewed January 24, 2014
Page last updated January 27, 2014

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health.

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