InStyle has teamed up with the nonprofit organization I Am That Girl to chat frankly with celebrities about issues affecting girls’ self-esteem. Inside the February issue of InStyle, now available on newsstands and for digital download, actress and documentary producer ('Hot Girls Wanted') Rashida Jones fills I Am That Girl's Emily Greener in on the perks of aging and what it’s like to have fellow funny lady Amy Poehler for a BFF.
In our selfie-obsessed world, we’re constantly thinking about how we present ourselves on social media. How do you remain focused on being true to yourself?
I try to keep my inner dialogue centered on the positive things happening in my life rather than on what other people think about me or how I look.
Did you struggle with how you were perceived growing up?
I had a lot of anxiety, especially about boys. I was sensitive, so when guys teased me, I took it very personally. If I could have a conversation with my 15-year-old self, I’d explain that when it comes to self-worth, there’s nothing a significant other can give you that you can’t give yourself. That takes a long time to learn—I’m almost 40, and I’m just realizing it now.
As an adult, do you still have days when you don’t feel confident?
Of course. Nobody stares in the mirror every morning and thinks, Wow, I’m so happy with this face. I definitely have insecurities about aging because I’m not the type of person who will inject something into her face or have surgery to stay youthful-looking.
How do you counteract those feelings of insecurity?
By surrounding myself with good friends. I work in a competitive business where money is the main driver for many people, so rather than getting caught up in that, I try to connect with individuals who share my values. Amy Poehler and I have been friends longer than we’ve been working together, and we always say we’re "chosen family." We have our own language, which makes it easy to catch up; even when we’re super-busy, we can get up to speed in about four text messages.
You and Amy are both girl bosses in your own right. Do you feel pressure working in a media climate where women are sometimes underrepresented?
I’ve never been made to feel that being a woman was a handicap. I’m very proud of my womanhood, and I find strength in being surrounded by ladies. I grew up with sisters—our age range spans 40 years. So I lived with a very diverse group of personalities, and we formed a very tight bond as a result.
You’re working on the script for Toy Story 4 and starring in the new TBS series Angie Tribeca. How do you balance it all?
I’m very grateful that I have a lot going on, but I have a tendency to overextend myself. I’ve learned that I have to say no to some opportunities or else I’ll collapse. We live in a capitalist country and the goal is to have as much as you can, but that makes me feel manic.
What do you consider your greatest strength?
I can be dropped in a room and speak with just about anybody. I love the idea of being in a place where people might seem stiff or snooty and trying to break them down a bit.
If you could tell young girls everywhere one thing, what would it be?
You are complex, and you are multidimensional. The sooner you start to embrace that, the sooner you’ll be OK with yourself.
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