Today marks the first day of #AntiBullyingWeek – a week that reminds us how important it is to #BeKind and #ChooseRespect always!

We thought this week would be the perfect time to speak to some amazing, influential women and pick their brains on the issue of bullying, self-esteem and overcoming insecurities.

So, first up we have the INCREDIBLE, beautiful Stephi La Reine!

 If you’re a keen Instagrammer- you’ve probably already noticed Stephi’s colourful, vibrant pics pop up a few times on the explore page.

Stephi is from Claughton on the Wirral and began blogging as a way to pass the time during her summer break from university. Her amazing, head-turning rainbow coloured hair and eclectic fashion sense got her noticed initially, and since then she’s built an online kingdom of fashion, beauty and music lovers.

Stephi has had the opportunity to travel around the world on all-expenses-paid trips, and can often be found attending VIP parties!

However, Stephi’s blog also covers deeper, more personal issues- the ‘life’ section of her blog includes topics such as ‘How To Be a Happier Person’ and ‘Things I Would Tell My Teen Self’. We absolutely love how open and honest Stephi is as a person, and we applaud the fact that she isn’t afraid to spread a message of positivity, self-love and girl power.

So today, we share Stephi’s thoughts on a topic that is extremely close to both her and our hearts here at Sunkissed, and we really hope that her incredible, insightful answers can help anyone who needs a bit of advice this week…

1. We love your colourful, positive blog/SM feeds and amazing sense of style! Has there ever been a time when you’ve struggled with insecurity or low self-esteem? 

Thank you! I actually spent all of my teen-hood feeling insecure. When you're a teen, you're in a constant battle with your identity. 

School expects one thing from you, your friends another, and your hormones are going wild. So you can feel very victimised, it’s a perfectly normal feeling that every teenager suffers from, eventually. With love, support and positive thinking it is possible to get through some of your darkest moments, and make your life full of rainbows and sunshine. 

I completely flipped my insecurity by looking into mindfulness, it’s life changing and gives you a very positive outlook on everything. It brings out the best in you, and makes you shine and focus on the goodness in yourself and others.

It made me change my lifestyle, so instead of looking at the girls in magazines, and wondering “Why don’t I look as pretty as those models?” I told myself that I am beautiful in my own way, and thought of all the lovely qualities I liked about myself. It’s not being big-headed, it’s having self love for who you are. 

By simply telling yourself that you love you, and praising yourself for great things that you do you’ll naturally perk up. However having communication with others is equally as important as trying to solve your insecurities yourself. Make time to talk to someone who you can trust and vent to. It’s amazing how much better you feel once you’ve vocalised it to someone else. You’re never alone, and there is always support - in school, at home, with your friends, make time to talk. 

 

 

2. What does girl power mean to you?

Girl power to me is always supporting your friends in their passions, spreading love and happiness to improve their lives as much as yours. 

I believe having girl power and girl friendship can change the world for the better if we all respect each other. Never beat another girl down, raise her up and make her feel wonderful for the great things she does. 

 

 3. What advice would you give to someone who is facing bullying?

I was severely bullied throughout high school for being an individual, having different music taste and I never stood up for myself as I was shy, quiet and just liked to get on with my own things. That immediately stops after high school, because people won’t tolerate a bully in the work place or as a friend. In todays society we praise individuals for their differences, whether that’s their taste in music, clothes or passions.

However the best piece of advice is that you should never ever lower yourself to their level, by insulting or hitting back. 

Later in life they’ll probably still be the same, and never find love or happiness because they’re negative. So hang in tight, tell yourself just how much of a nice person you are, that you don’t bully others. So keep pursuing your passions, and continue to love, respect so others will too! 

 

 

 4. Who do you look up to and find especially inspirational?

I find anyone who dares to be different inspirational. I often look to musicians and artists as they spend their life being who they want to be, and not who they have to be. David Bowie, Joan Jett, Andy Warhol, JK Rowling; they all had vision and wasn’t afraid to show it to the world. They changed the world, changed lives (including mine!) And still continue to inspire millions of people every day. 

 

5. Do you have a favourite quote/motto on self-love or empowerment?

You’re a work of art. Not everyone will understand you, but the ones who do will never forget you. 

 

Thanks for reading- if you’re currently facing bullying and need to speak to someone, don’t be afraid to reach out for help. Speak to a friend, family member or teacher- or call 0845 22 55 787 <3

Don’t forget to follow Stephi’s blog www.stephilareine.com and follow her on Instagram @stephilareine

xx