Courage Integrity Assertiveness Confidence Restraint

Friday, October 7, 2011

Bullying!... it's Journal Entry Friday!

THE GOAL OF A BULLY IS TO BREAK YOU! break your spirit shatter your self-confidence. break the image in your mind of who you are. chip away at the strength you have to one day be the best YOU you can be. overpower you to make themselves feel better. pull you down so low that they will be above you.

But the truth of the matter is - bullies are the lowest on humanity's totem pole
Their bellies touch the ground.
You can't get lower than  that.

No matter what they will say about you after you leave.
You know who you are.
You know you have what is missing from their lives.
You know by walking away you are stronger than they will ever be.

Pray for their pain to cease so they can see the beauty the hate keeps them from finding.

Write a letter to a bully who has targeted you.
He/she will never see this letter.
But your words will bless you and take the edge off the pain they have caused.

Tell them why their hate won't scathe you anymore...
Explain to them what your life has that makes it easy to walk away from them...

Write a letter to yourself and praise the beautiful young woman you are!
Give yourself compliments you may never have heard.
Highlight the things that bring beauty into your life.
Celebrate that beauty!

I know many of you are hurting everyday b/c of the words or actions by another teen. I know it hurts.

But just remember:

"The days will come when you don't have the strength
When all you hear is you're not worth anything
Wondering if you ever could be loved
And if they truly saw your heart they'd see too much
You're beautiful You're beautiful
You are made so much more than all of this..."

Here's your journal page:

Monday, October 3, 2011

I take OFFENSE... and so should YOU

So, I was out with a good friend the other day and she asked me if I had seen a certain movie. I hadn't. I asked her what the language was like b/c I thought I had heard it was chockful of the F-bomb. She said yeah it was but we were grown ups so it was still a funny movie.

As my brain tried to make sense of what she said, I gave her my reason for not having any interest in seeing this movie.

"The people I surround myself with do not use that kind of language so when I hear it, it offends me. It wouldn't be enjoyable for me to sit through a movie like that."

She rolled her eyes.

This made me think.

It made me realize how "normal" our society has made offensive slurs, language and ideals.

And that was an "aha" moment for me as to the downfall of our youth's morals.

I have heard parents justify letting their children see a movie because, "It's not like they don't hear that language at the lunch table." Sure. Maybe that's true. But as a  mom, I am not there to condone that behavior so that justification really does not make much sense.

I know a school guidance counsellor who will not allow students to swear in her office. If they swear, they have to get up, leaver her office, walk back in, apologize and start the conversation over withOUT using that language. Those who complain about this rule often say, "Miss So-and-So doesn't care when we swear in her classroom!" So, if this counsellor cringed through the language b/c other teachers did, she would soon become desensitized and less offended at that language...and the cycle would continue.

So, I want you to think about the friends you are affecting with your offensive language, the hate you spread, the gossip you choose to continue, the rumors you add a little meat to, the dirty jokes you laugh at..... at one point in your life these things made you cringe. You might not remember that. But I promise you, you did.

So, what in your life have you become desensitized to?

Pinpointing these things and using them as a guide to set your boundaries is like dusting and vaccuuming all the grime out of your life.

From time to time we need to do a little Spring Cleaning in our souls...

What will you wash away today?

I would LOVE if you commented on this post... share your thoughts... you can always remain anonymous!!

Friday, September 23, 2011

TOXIC PEOPLE, TOXIC SITUATIONS... it's Journal Entry Friday

Toxic - acting as or having the effect of a poison; poisonous, harmful or deadly, likely to cause significant loss to the holder

So, read that definition and be honest with yourself. Today we will start identifying the things in your life that are TOXIC!

It could be a friendship, an acquaintance, a website, a job, one of your classmates, a boyfriend, a family member, something you are doing to your body, the thoughts in your mind or ARE YOU being toxic to someone else?

One of our older girls on A Girl's Gathering shared how she dealt with her TOXIC situation just last night...

"Girls today took a lot of strength for me to do but I did it, today I quit my job! I am ready to move on to the next chapter of my life and that drama filled place is not where it's at!"

All of the comments she received were supportive virtual high fives! We all knew she did the right thing! But how many of us would have been strong enough to pull away from something like she did?

Sometimes that toxic situation is our closest friend, a family member or the boy we have been dating for a long time. Don't fool yourself into believing that if it would be difficult to walk away, then it's not TOXIC. Many girls fall into this trap, especially with boys! We think that if it's going to hurt, then it must be the wrong choice when, in fact, sometimes the BEST decisions HURT THE MOST!

You know what relationships are like poison in your life. What relationship or situation just seems to suck the life out of you? Who are you with when you feel at your lowest? In what situation do you find yourself doing things that are far from who people believe you to be?

It's time to start doing some soul searching...

Make a list of situations where you made some (or thought about it) bad choices...
Jot down the thoughts you are entertaining that seem ok until you imagine yourself admitting them out loud...

Then make a plan for how you will walk away! It could just save your life.

If you don't have anyone to talk to about this, come join the conversation on A Girl's Gathering or email me privately at

Use the journal page below to take this first step to save yourself from the drama of toxic relationships and situations!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Demi Lovato and BULLYING

You wanna talk ROLE MODEL?

Demi Lovato discusses her struggles very openly on Ellen. She takes the hand she was dealt and turns it into a way to bless others.

Demi also admits that her almost-near-death struggles are directly related to the bullying she suffered in school. The mean words and hateful comments from her peers almost destroyed her even after she had hit the big time. Bullying is SERIOUS! Whether it's done in person or online... it can truly take the life out of you.

But what is so refreshing to see is someone as HUGE as Demi Lovato being REAL... being HUMAN!
We are all human and this celebrity takes that very seriously. There is no pretending with this pop star. She is REAL, she is AUTHENTIC and there is something to be said for her strength and resolve.
If you missed her conversation with Ellen, check it out here:

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Girl with SCARS...Journal Entry #6

Dear Journal,

I've realized that there really can never be a ending to these feelings..

You never just wake up and feel amazing again..

That's just not the way life is..

Each day is a struggle, but everyone handles it different..

Some people have different struggles, some just can't handle life..

It's a constant climb up a slippery slope..

Can anyone make it to the top? Does anyone even want to? What's it like up there? I'm sure there are a lot of people up there, cheering us all on..

Maybe we're so far down, we can't hear them..

But just because we can't hear them, does that mean their there? I guess it's the same with depression..

Even if I can't feel it, I just kind of KNOW that it's there..

But I have the choice to give up and slide voluntarily down that slippery slope to the sharp rocks below..

Or I could look my demons right in the eye and say, "I will be strong, I won't back down, you've made me small, but I won't submit anymore.."

it's gonna be harder saying that, but I just keep thinking, that at my funeral, whenever it may be, I don't want them to say, "she succumbed to her demons, she let them have her.."

I want them to say " she struggled, but she never stopped fighting.."

Monday, September 12, 2011

Hey! Hey!

Sometimes you just want to S.C.R.E.A.M!

How many times has an adult said, "You can't worry about what other people think!"

DON'T WORRY ABOUT IT?! Wouldn't it be easier to herd 100 cats into a garage filled with Great Danes?

Well, for me, it makes it easier when I am struggling with something to remember that I am NOT ALONE. Right? Think of something you struggle with or worry about.... do you honestly think you are the ONLY person who feels this way?

We are in this together, right? There's always going to be someone who shares your insecurity, your fears, your struggles.

I always encourage girls to STICK TOGETHER - we are SISTERS in this thing called LIFE! We need to ban together and HOLD ON, cuz it's gonna be a wild ride.

This is what girls are starting to feel through my workshops - it's a safe zone. No judging. No cliques. Just OPEN, HONEST REAL GIRLS! And it is so refreshing!

This video is for you! SUPERCHICK is one of my favorite bands! Enjoy this song! And live it!


Friday, September 9, 2011

THINK before you ACT... it's Journal Entry Friday!

Have you ever acted on impulse and then had to live with regret? Sometimes it's a small mistake and sometimes it is life-changing. When I was in high school, my friends and I regularly talked about how awesome it would be if we could have ONE REWIND for every perplexing scenario.

So, you hear that the boy you like might be asking someone else to Prom. So, if we had this ONE REWIND, we could ask him to Prom before he asks the other girl and if the result is mortifying, we could REWIND, not ask him and move on.

Or, if you were considering sacrificing one of the personal boundaries you had set for yourself you could cross that line, see what the result was and REWIND if it proved itself to be a boundary that shouldn't be crossed.

OK, WAKE UP! No more daydreaming.

Life isn't like that - we learn by trial and error. If it doesn't work, don't do it again.

"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." ~Albert Einstein

But what about the FIRST time we are faced with those situations or scenarios? How do you decide what the right choice is? Is it even POSSIBLE to know what the right decision is?

I can promise you that if you sit down and write out what your PERSONAL BOUNDARIES are and you LIVE THOSE BOUNDARIES - those "what if" scenarios won't seem so daunting. The RIGHT choice will just stand right out.

Jenna chose to cross a boundary she thought she had securely set:

"It's not like one day you decide to get pregnant. It's a series of compromises, small decisions that lead to a big consequence; and that moment when you find out you're having a baby, everything changes forever. I got pregnant the first night I had sex. That one night of drinking with my friends changed the course of my life forever...if you don't stay closely connected to God and have a strong accountability in your life, what seems like tiny physical compromises in a relationship can lead to huge regrets."

So, I ask you all the time to think about your boundaries but this time I want you to make those boundaries CONCRETE! But here's the catch... you need to be consistent in those boundaries in THOUGHT, WORD and ACTION. So, your journal entries will look like this:

Boundary ---->
Thought ---->
Word ----->

Then you will repeat these 4 things down the page - one set of 4 for each boundary you will set.

Here's an example on GOSSIP:

Boundary ----> No gossiping.
Thought ----> When someone tells me something about someone else, I need to realize it is not FACT unless I hear it directly FROM the person the gossip is about
Word -----> I will not spread gossip or tell info about someone else that is not in that person's best interest
Action-----> I will tell others to STOP when I am privy to gossip and I will speak my mind on how hurtful those words can be to the person who is not even there to stand up for themself or tell their side

Now, it's your turn.

Use the journal page below if you don't have your own journal and start SETTING YOUR BOUNDARIES that will keep you from having REGRET!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Girl with SCARS...Journal Entry #5

Dear journal,
Every day is simply a memory, yesterday seems so long ago, but it's really only hours ago.

But hours can be a long time, if you are waiting for something. It always takes longer.

I'm waiting for life. A better life. If I decided to get better, and someone asked me the next day when I stopped hurting myself, I could honestly say "a long time ago." time is just like that, I guess...

What would it be like to honestly be "fine"? I wonder if it would be nice, not to feel all the hurt. I wish I could just erase it from memory, and never remember it again.  

Maybe I could smile without that little voice in the back of my head asking me "are you really smiling because your happy? Or because it relieves everyone else and its just what they want to see..."

Gosh, I hate that voice..

Friday, September 2, 2011

COURAGE: it's Journal Exercise Friday

Yesterday's post was a short "get ya going" kind of discussion on preparing yourself for situations where you will need courage. Read about it HERE.

You know that there will be situations, at least weekly and sometimes daily that will call for you to do the right thing. But doing the right thing isn't always so easy, is it? Just like any other situation you have to prepare for, you need to practice your response so it comes naturally. You want it to become second-nature.

Yesterday I talked about SMALL STEPS, how to start nurturing your COURAGE without even needing to utter a word. Walking away from a situation you don't agree with is a great first step. And simple!

LARGE LEAPS are the next things that you will work up to. This is where you will start putting your feelings into words and sharing how you feel verbally. This is difficult to do so what makes it easier? Practice. Practice. Practice. Does that mean you have to be in the same awful situation 100 times before you get it right? Nope. It means you become a really good script writer. What? Yes, script writing!

This is one of my favorite things I teach girls to do. If you think you can't take anymore drama, but you only think of the perfect thing to say AFTER the drama is over, or you flip out and then spend the next two weeks mending the wounds you created with your temper then you are a perfect candidate for a script!

You know the typical situations that require a response that you are never prepared to give. Maybe it's an annoying person at school that uses you as the brunt of their jokes or gossip. Maybe it's a boy who pressures you in ways you feel are unacceptable. Each of you will have different scenarios so there is no ONE script I can give you to solve your problem. This is part of courage, where you step up and script your life.

A couple weeks ago I was talking to a girl who was having a situation come up with boys at school who were mocking her  and making her feel stupid in front of other people. She felt this situation was happening because she is a peacemaker - she is someone, like me, who HATES confrontation, HATES to have arguments, HATES drama. She was an easy target because she would never 'come back' with anything - she would ignore their words but soon be in private in tears with embarrassment.

She said that when this was happening she always wished she had the perfect thing to say when people do that so she would come out on top. She would stand up for herself and in her own way. Not out of anger, not through tears, but in that moment that is just too difficult to comprise that kind of response. The natural response would be to flip out and end up becoming more of a target.

So, we wrote a script. Something that got her feelings across simply and respectfully (because no matter how badly someone disrespects you, it is never a good idea to play that same card in your response) and most importantly to her, calmly and without need for drama.

"You know, when you feel the need to belittle someone and make them feel stupid, it shows that you are weak and have to make someone else look as little as you feel. I feel bad for you. You should talk to someone about that."

This is a TRUTH, it is RESPECTFUL and it was in the CALM STYLE that is her personality.

Now what? Does she write it on her arm everyday  in preparation for the next time he picks on her?

What does an actor do when the producer mails her the script? She practices. She learns her lines.

I told this sweet girl I was scripting with to practice this in the shower, while driving to school, before she goes to sleep. Out loud. You need to physically SAY these words, you need to HEAR yourself saying them. The more your let your brain and your mouth OWN your scripted responses, the EASIER it will be to say it to that person that needs to hear it.

This is such a fun EMPOWERING exercise!!! Now it's your turn.

Below is a journal page from the book - print it out and start journalling your scripts - you may have many or just one. But write it out. It doesn't need to be long. Simple and to the point is always better.

Fridays are going to be Journal Exercise Days, so get a folder, designate it as your Butterfly Girlz journal and print out the journal pages. Do the exercise. And as ALWAYS, share what you are thinking, how the exercises worked for you (or DIDN'T work) - I LOVE FEEDBACK!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Girl with SCARS...Journal Entry #4

Journal entry #4

Dear Journal,

I'm sitting in my room with my earphones in, listening to music, trying to NOT listen to my parents arguing. That's all they seem to do lately. And when they aren't together, all I hear is them griping about each other.

My dads job takes him away sometimes, and a few times I think my mom insinuated that my dad was sneaking off to see some other woman. That hurts me when i hear it. But I'm preparing myself ahead of time. If they separate (which is looking more and more likely) then I need to decide who I'm going to stay with...

Probably mom. But maybe dad. I'm not sure.

I can't tell anyone that my parents are fighting like this. I can tell them they are fighting, but I can't get into details. They wouldn't understand. They'd think I'm overreacting. But they don't understand what it's like when the only thing you hear all day is arguing.

When my dad and mom aren't arguing, it's my sisters or sometimes even me! I'm getting so sick of it! Cant they just... Stop?

When I do my school, I get so stressed. I can't concentrate! No one understands. My mom, again, believes I'm just being lazy.

But she doesn't know what it's like when all you want to do is collapse and let the world drain out of you. When you just can't go on, but you have to anyways. It's so hard!

But... I can't explain that to anyone. Because no one understands.

I'm alone...

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Wear your heart on your... shirt!

When you have something to say... say it loud.

"Live by example or step aside so someone else can." - the butterfly girlz

Order your very own BUTTERFLY GIRLZ T-shirt while you still have school shopping to do!

All proceeds benefit "Butterfly Girlz" and "the gathering" programs and workshops.

Pass it on.

Click on the shirt and order yours now!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Kindergarten could teach us ALOT...

As I put my baby boy on the bus this morning for his first day of Kindergarten, I was reminded of a book by Robert Fulghum that I have kept close to my heart for almost two decades.

I thought it was appropriate on what may be your FIRST DAY of school.

As you read these things, please THINK about them... one at a time... so simple, yet so poignant!

We could all learn a few things from our nearest Kindergartener... just not the picking-the-nose part!


[Source: "ALL I REALLY NEED TO KNOW I LEARNED IN KINDERGARTEN" by Robert Fulghum.  See his web site at  ]
(a guide for Global Leadership)

All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sand pile at school.
These are the things I learned:
  • Share everything.
  • Play fair.
  • Don't hit people.
  • Put things back where you found them.
  • Clean up your own mess.
  • Don't take things that aren't yours.
  • Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.
  • Wash your hands before you eat.
  • Flush.
  • Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
  • Live a balanced life - learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
  • Take a nap every afternoon.
  • When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together.
  • Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup: the roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
  • Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup - they all die. So do we.
  • And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned - the biggest word of all - LOOK.
Everything you need to know is in there somewhere. The Golden Rule and love and basic sanitation. Ecology and politics and equality and sane living.

Take any one of those items and extrapolate it into sophisticated adult terms and apply it to your family life or your work or government or your world and it holds true and clear and firm.

Think what a better world it would be if we all - the whole world - had cookies and milk at about 3 o'clock in the afternoon and then lay down with our blankies for a nap. Or if all governments had as a basic policy to always put things back where they found them and to clean up their own mess.

And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when you go out in the world, it is best to hold hands and stick together.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Girl with SCARS...Journal Entry #3

Journal entry #2

Dear Journal,
Well, today's a new day, pretty much the same as the last.. People are rushing, rushing, complaining, arguing, and criticizing... Am I wrong to just sit and watch? It seems lately I'm too tired to do anything but watch.. Why am I so tired lately? I mean, I'm tired of living, tired of fighting with myself, tired of tossing and turning night after night, trying to get these feelings out of my head.. That's mostly why my mom complains.. She thinks I'm lazy.. I guess I am.. But I feel so weak and helpless. I don't feel like I'm good enough for anything else... Can I just scream at the world, and make it stop? Can someone please stop this roller coaster called life? I'd like to get off now...

Friday, August 19, 2011

What's your SHIRT say?... it's Journal Entry Friday!

So, wouldn't it be cool if we could have our personality strengths on our clothing so people who only notice someone's looks could have a quick peek inside our soul before they started making their judgements?

This shirt is the one I designed and is on cafepress showing what The Butterfly Girlz as a group stand for.

What would your shirt say?

Have you ever thought of the things you stand for? Have you ever wished you KNEW what you stood for? Sometimes if you jot down the things you dislike about humanity, you can turn those around into the things you WANT to stand for.

For example, do you hate when people lie? Then you can stand for TRUTH. Do you have trouble trusting people who cheat? Then you can stand for INTEGRITY. And so on.

This week's journal assignment is for you to DESIGN YOUR OWN SHIRT with what you STAND for! This could be really cool, considering you can upload designs to cafepress and then order your OWN shirt to wear proudly! SOOOOO COOOL!

As always, copy and print the journal page or use your own journal for your sketches, PLEASE leave a link where we can all see your designs!

Now, get ready, get set, DRAW!!!


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Girl with SCARS...Journal Entry #2

I am thrilled to introduce the second installment of the newest feature on The Butterfly Girlz Blog, "Girl with SCARS," which is a series of journal entries that will amaze you. These journal entries are REAL, truly from a young girls journal. 'Girl with SCARS' writes these journal entries as a way of healing. Some are painful, some are sad and all will leave you wanting more.

Please give a Butterfly Girlz welcome to our anonymous teen writer who prefers, 'Girl with SCARS,' to her own name.

Journal Entry #2

Dear Journal,
Normally when you see someone, "hey! How are you?" is the most popular starting sentence, to which one usually answers with "fine." or "great!" or something along the lines of that.. Usually the person asking the question is satisfied with the pretty boring usual answer, although they sometimes get a puzzled, thoughtful look on their faces, like they're considering asking you again for confirmation as to if you are truly 'fine.' If that happens, I usually decide that it's about time to change the subject. I can fake being 'great' when asked once, but after the second time, my mind starts questioning me.. "should I trust them and tell them that I'm really feeling horrible? What if they start asking more questions? Can I think of solutions to best/worst case scenarios? " if I decide that the person in question is reliable, then I confide that I am terrible, then topics get deep, and I end up telling more than I wanted to.. Usually I end up regretting it... You see, I have trust issues.. But not you're average run-of-the-mill "I can't trust anyone" trust issues.. Mine are more of the opposite actually.. I trust people too easily, and they usually let me down... But its like, I want to trust SOMEONE out there, so I let my walls down, and people return my trust for more hurt... Which ends up making me have the average run-of-the-mill trust issues.. It's quite complex actually...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

SKUNKS - they just spread the stink!

So, I have been thinking alot about SKUNKS.


I don't dislike the skunks, I guess.

But I do hate their STINK!

Here's the thing with SKUNKS:
  • they are carnivores - out for blood
  • they are sneaky and only lurk in the shadows - They simply aren't a very brave species because you rarely see them out from under a safe cover and when you do, they are running to hide behind something else
  • when threatened the SPRAY - a small amount goes a long way, their negative stench can be smelled for miles and can reach farther in a short amount of time than they could go on foot
  • they are the chief carrier of rabies - They are quick spread disease among their kind as well as other species who cross their paths
  • they have these really nasty sharp claws that they use to dig - They can find things below the surface by digging deeper than most species would care to take the time to do
  • they are loners - they can "coexist" with other carnivores but rarely allow themselves "close" to others of their kind or other species
  • we ignore them - we stay out of their way and we don't get sprayed, right?
So, you are asking.... why the conversation about SKUNKS?!

Think about the last person who said something unkind to you that was just UNCALLED FOR... SKUNK!

Think about that comment posted on your facebook that hurt.... SKUNK!

Think about the girl in school who always has a negative comment about other people... SKUNK!

Now, go back and re-read the description of SKUNKS and put those people in your mind in place of a furry little animal.

I have thought about this for a long time...

People who put others down, make fun of people, bully, etc are PUBLICLY ADMITTING that they have low self esteem.

They might as well have a shirt made:

So, when these kinds of people cross your path - although it is sad to watch them head down a dangerous path - sometimes it is best to just head the other way. Ignore. Look away. Avoid. Just like you would if they had a long black and white tail and a REALLY stinky BUTT!

So, this has me thinking:
Could we change the way we think about people who bully? What if we actually started to SEE their actions as a cry for help? Instead of seeing them as strong - their actions prove that they are weak - so, what if that's how we started to see them?

I am NOT suggesting that the rest of us start feeling SUPERIOR! I am just wondering if the bullies realized that their actions were alerting people that THEY THEMSELVES are INSECURE - maybe they would stop.

Maybe if more people knew that bullying was actually a clinical symptom of depression (this is true!), the kids who bully would get help quicker and before the problem got worse. Before they hurt someone or themselves. Maybe the bullies wouldn't act out if they knew WE knew what those actions were saying about the state of mind they were in.

So, this logo needs an acronym - what could the letters S.K.U.N.K stand for that would get this point across in a respectful yet creative way?

The person who comes up with the BEST acronym wins THE FIRST T-SHIRT of its kind with YOUR acronym on it!

Send your entries in the comments section!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Soul Surfer and it's Journal Entry Friday!

This movie was incredible! I cried through the whole thing - just so incredibly moved. I think the thing that had me the most choked up was that the story is TRUE. Absolutely TRUE!

SOUL SURFER is the inspiring true story of teen surfer Bethany Hamilton, who lost her arm in a shark attack and courageously overcame all odds to become a champion again, inspiring millions worldwide through the love of her family, her sheer determination, and her unwavering faith in Jesus Christ. The film features an all-star cast, including AnnaSophia Robb and Helen Hunt, with Carrie Underwood in her film debut, and Dennis Quaid. (borrowed from Soul Surfer website)

My favorite line from the movie was after she lost her arm her dad was helping her try to get up on her board again and he was warning her that it wouldn't be easy. She said, "I don't need easy, I need possible."

"I don't need easy, I need possible."
What in your life isn't easy... but is still possible?

Your journal entry assignment is to come up with this list. If at all possible, I would suggest watching the movie JUST before making your list. The trauma and struggles that Bethany Hamilton endured are sure to put your life's drama into perspective.

I want to challenge you to put your list somewhere where you will see it EVERYDAY to keep your mind focused on the fact that what is possible isn't always easy!

What is possible isn't always easy!

I would love if you shared some of your list with us in the comments.

As always, feel free to print out this journal page to complete the assignment.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Introducing: Girl with SCARS...Journal Entry #1

I am thrilled to introduce the newest feature on The Butterfly Girlz Blog, "Girl with SCARS," which is a series of journal entries that will amaze you. These journal entries are REAL, truly from a young girls journal. 'Girl with SCARS' writes these journal entries as a way of healing. Some are painful, some are sad and all will leave you wanting more.

Please give a Butterfly Girlz welcome to our anonymous teen writer who prefers, 'Girl with SCARS,' to her own name.

Journal Entry #1

Dear Journal,
I was making cookies with my grandma today, and I was scraping the cookies off the baking sheet and placing them on paper towels on the counter... As my grandma walked off towards the dining room to read more of her book, she stated over her shoulder, "just don't burn yourself!" I wanted to reply with "I usually try not to burn myself grandma." but before I opened my mouth, my mind went back to the first time I hurt myself, myself... I had burned myself..

Why? I look down onto the innocent hair tool in my hand. Why? I try to control the shaking inside as I slip my wrist in-between the straighteners bars. Why? I wait to feel the heat, the heat that promises to relieve my pain. Why? I close my eyes tight and brace myself. Why? My skin tingles under the warmth.

Then it's over. I stare at the red mark on my wrist. Did I really just allow that to happen? Did I really just do that? As I stare at the red fading back to my normal skin tone, I breathe heavily.

What have I done?

Friday, August 5, 2011

Be a Songwriter! It's Journal Entry Friday!

Well, Wednesday I posted Demi Lovato's video SKYSCRAPER. I think this song is SO RAW and SO RELEVANT for so many girls today. Demi's life has turned upside down while her fans watch and she has pulled herself up and started to heal with us as her audience.

As I watched the video for the first time all I could think was how HEALING it must have been to literally let it all out on camera. Her face, her voice, her clenched fists all say, "This has n't been easy, but I will survive!"

Think of the worst thing you have ever been through - maybe you are going through it right now - wouldn't it be amazing to let go of all the pain and fill the air around you will words that will help you to heal?

Picture yourself on the set of that video, put YOU in the spotlight instead of Demi and watch the video play out in your mind...(don't let the "I don't have her voice" thought even enter your this exercise you DO have her voice) the camera has just YOUR face in its gaze, YOU are screaming out YOUR pain, YOUR tears come, YOUR fists are clenched and it's YOUR feet walking on broken glass.... the camera pans back and it is YOU letting go of all the pain and all the turmoil...

Now, I can't promise you a video crew and a multi-million dollar video out of this but writing YOUR song would be amazing, wouldn't it?

So, for your journal entry this week, I want you to model a song after Demi's - use the tune and her lyrics as your guide but change the words into YOUR OWN.

Skies are crying, I am watching
Catching teardrops in my hands
Only silence, as it's ending, like we never had a chance.
Do you have to make me feel like there's nothing left of me?

You can take everything I have
You can break everything I am
Like I'm made of glass
Like I'm made of paper
Go on and try to tear me down
I will be rising from the ground
Like a skyscraper, like a skyscraper

As the smoke clears
I awaken and untangle you from me
Would it make you feel better to watch me while I bleed
All my windows still are broken but I'm standing on my feet
You can take everything I have
You can break everything I am
Like I'm made of glass
Like I'm made of paper
Go on and try to tear me down
I will be rising from the ground
Like a skyscraper, like a skyscraper

Go run run run I'm gonna stay right here
Watch you disappear yeah
Go run run run yeah it's a long way down
But I'm closer to the clouds up here

You can take everything I have
You can break everything I am
Like I'm made of glass
Like I'm made of paper
Go on and try to tear me down
I will be rising from the ground
Like a skyscraper, like a skyscraper
Like a skyscraper, like a skyscraper
Like a skyscraper

I WOULD LOVE LOVE LOVE to see what you have written if you are comfortable sharing! Please leave it as a comment so others can see your heart - I think you will find this exercise VERY freeing! I am excited to see what your heart tells you!

And, as always, feel free to print and use the journal page provided!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Monday, August 1, 2011

Are you a FACEBOOK fake?

Facebook says, "How you present yourself on Facebook says a lot about who you are—just like what you say and do at school or with your friends. In all public places, online and off, it’s important to represent yourself as the kind of person you want to be."

So, WHO are YOU?
Take a peek back through the last couple days of your facebook use... how did you portray yourself?

Did you use foul/offensive language?
Did you threaten someone?
Did you post personal information about yourself or someone else?

Now, here's a real meter for how you are portraying yourself...
Think of someone who thinks you are the greatest - a grandmother, the little girl you babysit for, your little sister or the lady from church...
Now. go back and peek at the last couple days of what you have posted... on yours and the walls of your "friends" - would that person think the SAME way about you after reading those posts?

If the answer is "yes" then you are AWESOME at staying TRUE to WHO you ARE!
If the answer is "ugh..not-so-much" then you have a little work to do, some changes to make... maybe even some apologies to take care of.

There is a lot more info on facebook's SAFETY page about how to use facebook RESPONSIBLY!
You should check it out.
Here is a link directly to the SAFETY FOR TEENS page on Facebook. Check it out!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Spill it! ... It's Journal Entry Friday!

We had a great conversation over on "the gathering" yesterday concerning what girls do to each other. So, it would make sense that today we journal on the same subject.

If you did not read the post from yesterday, please go check it out - it will make you think and you will get more out of the journaling you do today.

This assignment will be simple in explanation but could take you all day... a couple of days... the rest of the summer to complete - depending on how you choose to digest it.

First, I want you to find a quiet place with your journal. I want you to get comfortable, close your eyes and clear your mind. Now, I want you to run through the girls who influence your life... friends, not-so-much-friends, acquaintances, teammates, siblings, etc. Just let their faces run through your mind like you are flipping through a photo book...

Second, I want you to jot down the names of the girls who showed up in your mind's photo book first... let's say you make a list of 10 to start... you can add names as you go along, but let's start with 10.

Third, look over the names you jotted down and choose the one that pops off the page first. Maybe this name pops off the page because she is your most loyal friend or maybe one of those names jumps out at you because of what you are going through with that girl. Take that name and start a new page by writing her name at the top.

Fourth, SPILL IT! Start writing EVERYTHING that is in your mind and your heart right this minute as you focus on the mental picture of your relationship with this girl. Just write. Don't stop. Don't edit. This is NOT for her... this is for YOU... ONLY! When you are finished, cross that person's name off the list.

Fifth, move onto the next name that pops off the page. Repeat Step 4.

This will be quite emotional for some of those names on your list. You may need a break after just a couple names. Some of you may need a break after the first one. But I urge you to finish. Don't stop before you have done this exercise for each name on the list - and, yes, your list may grow as you work through each name.

Why take the time to do this?

It is easy to stuff your emotions. When we stuff our emotions we ACT OUT in ways we wouldn't normally out of frustration over emotions we have not dealt with. We can become the MEAN GIRL simply because we have pent up frustration over something trivial and we will never know WHY we "turned" on the girl we once labeled as BFF seemingly without provocation. You deserve to know. SHE deserves to know.

It is also a good idea to get in touch with those deep feelings you have toward your TRUE friends. Those girls who you consider your non-biological sisters are part of who you are and knowing your deepest feelings about them helps to strengthen your relationship.

Some of what you write you may deem worthy of sharing with some of the girls on your list. Of course, this is when you edit and re-write. I hope you will choose to share these words with those girls in a face-to-face manner... even if you keep your letter with you as a cheat sheet. If she is worth your time to write all you did, she is worth hearing your voice affirm your friendship!

Some of what you write you may choose to destroy as a way of letting go of the frustration that person has caused you. Letting go of these feelings is a way to truly let go of a friendship that is toxic. You can tear, burn, flush these letters and vow to yourself to not look back... let it go for REAL.

This is an exercise that will make you grow, help you deal and bless you beyond anything you could imagine. Suggest this exercise to some of those friends you will be writing to... you may be pleasantly surprised as to what comes your way after they finish their list.

A word of CAUTION: DO NOT share your writing with anyone (or anywhere... no facebook, formspring, texts, etc) other than the person it was written for. Your integrity in this assignment is crucial. If you wouldn't want someone sharing their deepest personal feelings about you with others, then don't do it to someone else.

Save and print the journal page below if you need to:

Comments are always welcome!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Why are GIRLS so mean?

"What girls do to each other is beyond description. No chinese torture comes close." ~ Tori Amos

You call your best friend to tell her your biggest news and before you have a chance to gush, she blurts out, "Jamie told me that you told her that I wasn't your real BFF!" And the insane drama begins... you end up hanging up in tears and you have no idea if she will even speak to you again... sounds familiar?
We are having a LIVE conversation right now over on "the gathering" and girls are spewing why they think there is so much drama between girls.

Apparently, we are finding through our conversation that it is largely related to JEALOUSY!

Ahhh, the big green monster of JEALOUSY! Could someone please just put that thing out of its misery already?

Girls feel the need to say exactly what is on their mind with NO use of any filter... unfortunately what they are not seeing is how UGLY their words and are. It is sad to me to hear about girls who turn on each other almost overnight and it all ends up being over petty things... friendships are such a gift and some girls treat their friends as if they were disposable.

SOME people allow themselves to process their feelings BEFORE blurting them out! That's a good use of a FILTER... we are all human and we all have thoughts we would rather not admit to - it's what you DO with those thoughts that can make you look bad.

Being a teen girl isn't easy. It is downright painful.

"We can all become obsessed with looking better than the next girl and if things go her way instead of yours (guy you like asks her out instead of you) we become jealous and hurt because we don't feel like we're good enough so we become angry and that makes us pick out all the bad things about that person (even if it's not true) and we end up saying things we regret/don't mean." - Elizabeth, 17

So, what are some things you do to keep from hurting your friends when you are feeling bad about yourself?

JOURNAL!!!!! Write it all down, get it all out, deal with your own issues before you make more for someone else! You don't like the way you are feeling on the inside so why would you do that to someone else?

Be honest - does it REALLY make you feel better when you throw someone under the bus? Because it doesn't make you LOOK better. Those actions are UGLY and if you are striving for BEAUTY you have missed the boat by a long shot.

Project yourself ahead 10 years - what kinds of memories do you want to have of your teens? How do you want to remember yourself? Do you want to remember being the friend everyone could rely on or the friend that treated everyone badly to make herself feel better?

Who do you need to apologize to today?

If someone needs to apologize to YOU... put a link to this post on your facebook and see what happens.

Girl drama is just as Tori Amos says, TORTURE!

Don't do it.

It's quite ugly!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Just the Way She Is Day... Awesome amounts of FUN!

Last week we celebrated the very first JUST THE WAY SHE IS DAY with a special FUN DAY CELEBRATION with 32 girls ages 7-17! The theme of the day was loving ourselves just the way we are and not allowing the media to make us feel that WHO we are is a result of what we look like.

The girls had a blast chatting about how the media makes us feel. We talked about how we all come in different shapes and sizes and our differences are beautiful! If we were all carbon copies of each other life would  be SO boring!

We played crazy games, ate a lot of yummy food and sweated in the 100 degree weather!

I have gotten some amazing feedback from moms whose daughters enjoyed the day. Can't wait for our next event.

Check out the LOCAL EVENTS tab at the top of the page to take part in the next event!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Girl POWER... it's Journal Entry Friday (early)

Yesterday at our JUST THE WAY SHE IS event our discussion turned in a direction that I think warranted the good long chat we ended up having. I thought since I didn't post yesterday (because my house was filled with 30-some amazing young ladies) I would post the revelation we had. Then I thought this would be a great journal exercise - but I was so pumped about it, I didn't want to wait until tomorrow to post it - I wanted to give it to you So, it's Journal Entry Thursday...

There is a thing I like to call GIRL POWER! It's a real thing. It's a phenomenon that is not seen too often these days. It is something worth bringing back. It is the mentality that as women, we are all in this thing called life TOGETHER - not pitted against one another. It is the notion that we are all sisters and should be building each other up, not tearing each other apart.

Yesterday, I said this, "Together as a sisterhood of girls we can lift each other up and bring out each other's inner strengths and beauty." After I said it, I immediately felt the need to elaborate because the whole day was about what the media feeds us and how much of it is LIES.

Mean girls are promoted on TV as strong. They are always the popular girls. The head cheerleader who is dating the quarterback. She is the one all her cronies strive to be like.

It is easy to decide you like the POWER that comes along with making someone feel bad. Some personalities find this kind of power addicting. It only takes one time to crush someone with your words. And for some girls, whether you like to admit it or not, it feels good. The automatically feel bigger and better. Before they know it, they are just what the media created them to be.

The sad part is, they have been deceived. There is NO power in acting like this.

True GIRL POWER is working together as a sisterhood of girls by lifting each other up and bring out each other's inner strengths and beauty.

This is how we strengthen our wings so we can fly!

The most painful thing for me to see is the attack mode some girls jump into as soon as they feel they have been wronged. Suddenly the girl you divulged your deepest secrets to has now decided that something you did warrants her gathering some other girls from your circle, telling them HER side of the story and creating an opposing team. Girls! This is NOT how it works! These actions show your immaturity, NOT your strength. These actions have ramifications you are NOT ready for. These actions turn you into a MEAN GIRL! Is that the label you want?

One of my favorite quotes is, "Be the friend you would want to have!"

It's HARDER to stick it out with a friend through the tough times. It's HARDER to say, "I was wrong and I am sorry."

There's no POWER in being mean. Anyone can be a MEAN GIRL! It doesn't take much. A bad attitude and a gutter mouth.

But there is STRENGTH in being a SISTER!

This week's journal exercise is for you to decide if you are a MEAN GIRL or a TRUE SISTER?

Pretend you are one of your friends... and write a letter to YOU from HER shoes about the kind of friend you are. What this letter is lacking will be your clues as to the character traits you need to work on.