As a child in elementary school, American recording artist, Lizzie Sider, was teased and bullied by her peers. Sider endured years of emotional and verbal bullying in school, and it would often send her home in tears.
“I would come home crying almost every day. It was hard for me because I didn’t understand why I was the target; I was a normal kid who was always kind to everyone,” explains Sider. “And the thing is, I loved my school. I had a great time growing up there; I developed close relationships with my teachers, took advantage of the sports and arts opportunities that were available, and made some great friends, including my best friend, to this day. And although my principal and teachers tried to talk to my class about respect, kindness, and anti-bullying, it just didn’t click with the students who were bullying me.”
One morning, as Sider was leaving her house for school, her dad, Don Sider, told her to remember that “nobody has the power to ruin your day.” Though it puzzled her at first, over time, Sider began to realize the importance of that statement.
“I think that back then, what I learned from that statement was to not let those bullies get to me. By my shyness and outward expression of sorrow as a result of their teasing, I was giving them all the power. To place the power back in my hands, all I needed to do was show them that they could not knock me down by their ridiculing words or actions. After practicing this for a while, the bullying stopped. I finally learned that it was okay to be my proud self, at school.”
In October of 2011, Sider teamed up with country star, Jamie O’Neal, to write a few songs, one of which would become Sider’s empowering and confident anthem, “Butterfly.” Sider’s experiences in elementary school inspired the main message within “Butterfly.”
“My story is unique, because it is mine, but it is really a universal story that Jamie and I wanted to use to empower individuals all around the world, young and old. We have all been through times of struggle. We have all had times where we weren’t confident in ourselves, and because of that, we hid who we really are. ‘Butterfly’ inspires us to spread our colorful and beautiful wings that we have had all along, and fly as high as we can. We are all unique and special, and each and every one of us are butterflies.”
Her father’s phrase of “nobody has the power to ruin your day” resonated with her so deeply that two years later, in 2013, she decided to embark on her National Bully Prevention School Tour of the same name. Lizzie created her own 30 minute Bully Prevention Assembly, geared towards elementary and middle school children, which tells her personal story and combines positivity, encouragement, music, and a relatable message. She has personally performed at roughly 350 schools nationwide, and continues to present her live assemblies in schools. Her newest project, a free Bully Prevention Video Package, is ever-growing in popularity and as of February 2017, is being used in 3,200 schools, representing about 2 million children worldwide. All of Lizzie’s work goes through Nobody Has The Power To Ruin Your Day, a non-profit organization that she founded in 2014. Donations to this organization are accepted and greatly appreciated.
“My dream is to be a positive role model, in the biggest way I can be. I want my anti-bullying efforts and my influence as an entertainer to inspire and empower people all around the world.”
Read Lizzie’s full bio here: www.lizziesider.com/about