Emma Watson may be the picture of female empowerment and maturity at this point in her life, but that doesn’t mean she didn’t stumble and struggle along the way. As most of us can attest, insecurities, body image issues and crippling self-doubt are par for the course as a teenager and young adult-add to that a spotlight on your every move and it becomes clear why even Emma Watson was not immune to the anxieties of adolescence.
In a recent interview with Esquire UK, the actress and activist opened up about the lapse in confidence that she experienced in her early twenties:
I, as a 21-year-old, was riddled with insecurity and self-critiquing. Some of my friends still are. I realized that I didn’t like friends taking photos of me when I wasn’t working and I actually got in a fight about this issue. And I wondered, why is this bothering me? Why does this make me so insecure? And I realized it’s because I can’t even reconcile myself with my own image on the front of these magazines.Comparing myself to how I look, when I’ve gone through all of that makeup and styling, in my normal life is… just… I can’t live up to it. I was like, ‘Holy shit! If that’s how I feel – and I get to be the person who’s on the cover of those magazines – how’s anyone else meant to cope?’
Watson goes on to explain that familiar transition that happens as you get older and learn to accept and love yourself as your are:
It’s unbelievable. Switching from that to being like: ‘Oh, I actually operate in a system that’s fucked. I’m not fucked, the system’s fucked. OK.’ And, ironically, it’s probably made me more beautiful and more confident as a result because I’m not carrying that anxiety any more.
If you needed another reason to admire her, this should do the trick.