Wellness Coach Deborah Kesten shares how young women can build good self-esteem.
The real question is, you know, when I am speaking with teenage cousins of mine and they are telling me about their boyfriends, I listen and I am very polite and I am kind of in coaching mode, on one level with no judgment. And after I listen, understanding and remembering painfully well and all too well what it was like to be a teenager, which is when girls, typically at about 11 start their self-esteem, you might know this. statistically there girls’ self-esteem plummets at about 11, 12, 13 years old; that’s in the literature.
And so when I am listening to teenage cousins, particularly girls, talking with me about their boyfriends and dating and I am hearing their stories, I listen and then I say okay, and they kind of get jolted. “I have a question for you, and it’s not going to be easy for you to hear what I am saying. I would like to know what you want and what you need. I don’t care what your boyfriend wants and your boyfriend needs. What do you want and what do you need? And is your boyfriend the kind of guy who can give it to you and care about it?” And they just go blank.
And to me, that is what is the kind of thinking that would be beneficial for in terms of, particularly with girls, in terms of, I don’t want to say building self-esteem, but living in a frame of mind that includes self-esteem. Caring about yourself and observing other people in terms of who they are and how they are and really asking yourself, “Is this the kind of person I want to include in my life and spend time with?” And that to me is what self-esteem would mean and how it would feel, and the action and thought that would be behind living in a place filled with self-esteem, living a life that is filled with self-esteem.
About Deborah Kesten, M.P.H.:
Deborah Kesten, M.P.H., is an international nutrition and lifestyle researcher and educator, with a specialty in preventing and reversing obesity and heart disease. She was the nutritionist on Dr. Dean Ornish’s first clinical trial for reversing heart disease through lifestyle changes, and Director of Nutrition on similar research at cardiovascular clinics in Europe. More recently, she has created the pioneering Enlightened Diet, a “whole person” optimal eating and weight loss program, the results of which were published in the peer-reviewed medical journal Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing. With more than 200 published health articles, she is the award-winning author of The Enlightened Diet, Feeding the Body, Nourishing the Soul and The Healing Secrets of Food, a comprehensive, evidence-based nutrition program about the power of food to heal physically, emotionally, spiritually, and socially.