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When Your Self-Esteem Is on an All-Time Low

As cliché as it may be, you just don't know how lovely you are.
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Being a teen is harder in the age of social media. There are photos of people everywhere flaunting their OOTDs, grades in school, extra-curricular activities, travels, and whatever it is that they're busy with. With everything that's popping on your Feeds, it's hard not to feel the pressure of keeping up with these people. It's also hard to not feel like you're enough, that you're supposed to do something post-worthy in your life. We know and we understand the pressures you're going through, Candy Girls.

Believe it or not, our dear girls, you are not alone in this battle. You are not alone in figuring out who you are and who you're meant to be. These Candy Girls have written all about it in our Candy Feels section, so in case you need a reminder today that you're doing fine being who you are, here are their experiences on how they overcame that feeling of not being enough.

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HaydeeThe Day I Told Myself That It's Okay to Be Me

"Once in my life, I wished I were someone else. Someone who has a perfect heart, mind, and body. Someone with a pleasing personality that’s accompanied by a brilliant mind. Someone who's bold, great, free, and incredible—unlike me. Then on a cold 3AM morning, I woke myself up and told myself that I need to love myself.

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"Simplicity. Simplicity is not about wearing simple clothes. It's not about not putting on makeup. It's not about letting go of my desire to fix myself the way I want to every day. Simplicity. It is simply being true to myself. It's about showing the world who I am and letting them know that I'm simple this way. I don't have to add or subtract something from myself just to have someone who will appreciate my simplicity."

"Simplicity. It is simply being true to myself. It's about showing the world who I am and letting them know that I'm simple this way. I don't have to add or subtract something from myself just to have someone who will appreciate my simplicity."

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The Blind Pretender: To the Girl Who Never Found Herself Beautiful

"To you who never got chosen by someone you love, who always makes the first move so that your crush can notice you, to you who always wonders why your friends effortlessly get their wants and demands while you strive hard to get yours. This is for the girl who did her best to look presentable and pretty but can't pass the standards of others.

"You're not just beautiful. You are majestic, resplendent, and sophisticated. Someone out there loves you dearly, please don't forget that. Please don't change yourself to be someone that society expects you to be. Don't expect someone to give you happiness because you're the one who needs to create it. You are you and you don't need their words to describe you."

AudreyYou Have to Dare to Be Different

"It may be a good thing to be one with the crowd, but it is the best feeling when we are one with ourselves."

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"It takes courage to finally accept that what we like may not be what everybody adores. It may be difficult to feel different, but the end result will always make us realize that the only life we have to have control over is ours, that living for ourselves is more important than living for the sake of everyone's standards.

"Trends will always be a part of our society. But that does not mean we have to always go with the flow. The flow may be a hindrance to expressing our personalities, and a barrier to letting our hidden talents show. We won't hurt anyone if we change a little something in our lives, since it's not theirs. So dare to be different. Besides, I don't think anyone would go blind over a neon-neon combination."

Tell us your stories, too, Candy Girls. We'd want to hear what you have to say about life, college, politics, and feminism! You can send us you submissions via Candy Feels.

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About the author
Ayessa De La Peña
Candymag.com Assistant Section Editor
I am Candymag.com's resident fangirl and ~*feelings*~ girl. When I'm not busy researching about what to write next on the website, I sleep, read books, and re-watch episodes of Friends.
VIEW OTHER ARTICLES FROM Ayessa

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If you know me, and know me well, I am not the biggest fan of idyllic lifestyles. With a Type A personality, I act immediately upon whatever challenge that needs to be addressed. I actually enjoy keeping my mind preoccupied: doing university work in my favourite cafe then running errands around town, grocery shopping here, updating my accounts there, photocopying documents on the way down the street - all just in time before having a glass of champagne at the bar with my friends come evening.

And so, you could imagine my bewilderment when the next challenge to be faced was an extensive self-quarantine protocol. I didn’t know what to do when my greatest responsibility in this situation was to do nothing at all. My first few attempts to combat my consternation were very much rooted in distraction and imagination. My distractions involved conducting research, writing songs, calling family and friends, filming videos, and eating chocolate! My imaginations and fantasies were centred on travelling, shopping, even clubbing (which I rarely do) for when they find a cure to COVID-19. I did anything and everything that could be considered constructive in order to pass the time, mainly hoping I could just undertake the basic human necessities to survive - that is, eat and sleep the day through - until the next day comes, until the world is closer to becoming a better place, until quarantine ends, until my flight follows through, until I see my family and friends again.

Days in self-isolation and suspended flights turned to weeks and turned to months. By the third extension here in Spain where I study Fashion Business, I had to tell myself this shall be my new normal now, that I was blessed to be healthy, that I was tired of merely existing and missed what it was like to actually live - even if just within four walls. Little by little, I began to find significance in the simple occurrences of the day: the soft glare of the rising sun beaming golden streaks through my bedroom window upon waking up, the fragrance of freshly washed bed sheets that I had painstakingly hung to fit a relatively small clothes rack without crumpling them, the crunch and tanginess of warm toasted bread topped with raspberry marmalade, the buzzing sound of a phone call from home just waiting to be answered, to the caress of a fuzzy sweater to keep warm at night. I realised, “What pleasures to be enjoyed in the pause of slow living!” Through this continued pause, which I loathed at first, I began to appreciate each moment of the day rather than wish it would pass more swiftly, moments I had overlooked so often before the lockdown. I started to find that the challenge of self-isolation was never to pause both the regular routines of life as well as the positive emotions that came with these - as initially, I thought it meant to pause all happiness, so as to withstand a time of endurance in hopes for a better tomorrow, much like a form of delaying gratification. Life is just too fragile these days to delay gratification any further.

Life has paused, but it has not stopped. Believe that like any punctuation mark in a sentence, the pause will provide the right timing of things to take place. Till then, let us not waste our time waiting. Instead, we could be in the moment, seek substance in simplicity (that is, in what we already have), And enjoy the pleasure in pause. “Practice the Pause. When in doubt, pause. When angry, pause. When tired, pause. When stressed, pause. And when you pause, pray.”

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