How can I be more confident this new school year?

After this summer I will be heading into 8th grade. Last year in 7th grade, I felt like NO ONE had a clue who I was, but everyone knew who my best friend was. Also, every guy in the grade liked my BFF! I love my best girl and all, but seeing that she was pretty much a celebrity at our school and I was just a blade of grass gives me very low confidence and self esteem.
Next year I would really like a little more confidence and popularity and date a normal guy. What should I do? Grow my hair out and get highlights? Dress better? All I need is advice on how to be more confident.

Hey chica,
Whoa there! No need to do anything too drastic! It's true that to be popular you need confidence, but that doesn't mean you've gotta change yourself entirely. Everyone has different ways of gaining confidence, so the trick is to find what works best for you. Keep reading to check out different ways to gain confidence.
First off, try using imitation. No, this doesn't mean you should try to be something you're not. Instead, observe how the popular kids are confident. Then, see if you have a similar aspect that can help you with your confidence. For example, think about your friend for a moment. What made her so confident that everyone liked her? Was it the way she treated others? The way she talked? Sense of humor? In other words, take a good look at others and then a good look at yourself to find a part of you that people can admire.
Now you might be thinking, what if it was her looks that gave her popularity and confidence? If that is what you're thinking, then don't. Anyone can have the latest clothes, pretty makeup, or silky hair, but that doesn't give you any of the things you want. It's how comfortable you feel in your skin that determines how you carry yourself and how confident you feel around others. You can change the way you look on the outside (and c'mon, who doesn't like a change now and then?), just don't rely on that to change how you feel inside.
After you find what makes you feel comfortable, it's time to do a little makeover inside your head. For instance, the most important part about confidence is optimism. Tell yourself that anything is possible and stay positive. Believing that you are a blade of grass won't help. Believe that you are so much more and don't let your BFF's popularity get to you. That's something that's not under your control and something that shouldn't affect the way you feel inside.
Finally, when school starts up again, don't limit yourself to the people you know. Join a new club and sit at different lunch tables every now and then. This will let you practice your confidence around others and let others know how great you are.

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by Jean Lee | 2/1/2016
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