When we think about strength, we usually think about being physically strong. But strength is about so much more than how much you can lift, or your endurance in a 5K race.
Sometimes strength looks like courage. Sometimes strength means being the bigger person. Sometimes your strength is found in your vulnerability.
At one time or another, we’ve all been discouraged. We’ve struggled, felt lost, been lonely or scared. It’s in those moments that we find out how strong we really are. And in that strength, we find opportunities to grow and thrive — if we’re given the support and encouragement we need.
There may be no time more delicate than the formative years of childhood and adolescence. Those middle school years are when it seems impossible to explain how you’re feeling and every decision feels paramount.
In Secret Deodorant’s new spot “Raising Daughters,” soccer legend Abby Wambach shares the advice she would give to her 13-year-old self:
Her advice is powerful, like when she says, “Pass the ball more. It takes a bigger person to help someone else score.” And when she advises that “a true champion is someone who champions others.”
Her words had us wondering what advice we’d give our younger selves, knowing what we know now. How would we shape the lives of the women we would become? Or better yet, what advice would we give our daughters?
Here’s some of our most heartfelt advice for strong women and girls everywhere:
1. It’s OK to be different. Uniqueness is beautiful. Love the things that make you unique, and welcome differences in others.
2. Be scared, but do it anyway. It’s outside of your comfort zone where you’ll find your strength, but this is how you learn and grow.
3. Kindness always matters. No one is ever too important not to be kind.
4. Think before you speak. Be careful with your words, because once you put them into the world, you can’t take them back.
5. Don’t fear failure. Failure is one of the most important parts of success. When you fail, don’t let it discourage you. Learn from it, get back up, and try again.
6. Don’t fear success either. It can be tough when you worry you won’t live up to the expectations of others (or yourself). You’ll continue to succeed and to fail, but the important thing is never to stop trying.
7. The success of others doesn’t take away from your own. Never let jealousy or insecurity keep you from encouraging and supporting others. There’s plenty of success and opportunity to go around.
8. Be a friend. Treat others the way you’d like to be treated. That means reaching out to someone in times of need.
9. Things aren’t always as they seem. Sometimes the bully is mean because she’s actually hurting and scared. Don’t make assumptions.
10. Don’t forget to take care of yourself. Buy the dress you love and wear it every chance you get. Take time for you, and do things that make your heart happy.
11. Speak up. Never hesitate to speak up for others. Use your strength, determination, and voice to advocate for the people around you.
12. You’re amazing. And anyone who doesn’t realize that isn’t worth your time. Full stop.
13. You’re stronger than you realize. We’ve all survived heartache that we were sure we’d never make it through. Don’t give up. You got this.
Part of being a strong woman means raising strong girls. And part of being a strong girl means having the strength to support and encourage other girls around you.
We should all strive to empower strong girls everywhere. Because they’ll become strong women who will make the world a better place.
Secret Deodorant is the first and only antiperspirant brand designed specifically for women. The brand, which has always proudly supported women’s advancement, celebrates women who are #AllStrengthNoSweat — those who boldly pursue their passions without “sweating” the obstacles in their path.