“Here’s one thing the fashion industry probably won’t tell you: confidence is more attractive than anything you could put on your body” – Sophia Amoruso
I was inspired to write this post afterI listened to Kelsea Ballerini’s new album, where you can purchase here, and she tweeted something that has been stuck in my head for a week, “if all we have is our story, I wanted to tell mine”. It's daunting and scary to share something so personal about yourself, but I also believe that it is important. You never know who you can help.
There’s a weird thing in our society that confidence in women is “stuck-up” or “self-absorbed” and more ridiculous ideas along those lines. But in all honesty, it’s knowing what you want, accepting who you are, and not accepting anything less than what you deserve. What’s so wrong and bad about that?
When I was growing up, there were many strong women that I was able to look up to in my family, like my mom and my aunt, and there were many female celebrities in the media that radiated confidence. But, it was always scaled back in movies and shows, in my opinion. The idea in my head, when I was little, was that a woman must be a “damsel in distress” and wait on a man to come and save her and that a woman has to scale herself back when she’s in a relationship because strong women scare men away. I’m not saying that that’s how it is in reality, but growing up this is what I had in my head.
This post can kind of tie into my first post about self-love, you can read that here. This idea in my head didn’t really influence me in elementary school or early middle school, but towards the end of middle school and high school, it did. In high school, I felt like I always had to straighten my hair and wear makeup – even as little as mascara and powder - and scale back who I was. And I cared about what boys – actually everyone – thought of me. It was all-consuming and exhausting and probably damaged my overall mental health in the long run.
I remember dating someone in high school for a very short time, I woke up late for school and our power happened to be out from a storm the night prior. My mom was telling me that we had to go, but I vividly remember panicking because I couldn’t straighten my hair and knowing I would have to see my boyfriend with my natural hair. It was one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever done so far in my life. I bet he didn’t care at all that my hair was wavy and frizzy. I bet he didn’t even notice if we’re being honest.
Recently, I realized that I really don’t care as much anymore. Maybe it’s because I’ve gotten older, but regardless of why it’s important to know that things are changing. When I go on dates now, I really don’t care what they think of me. Because if they don’t like me then there’s no point to worry about it because they aren’t the one for me and I don’t need someone in my life that doesn’t want me. Plus, I like me so that’s all that should really matter. And of course, I still do my makeup, and my hair, and picking cute outfits to wear. But I don't do it every day anymore because sometimes it's just not worth the hassle and I just don't feel the need to do it all the time now. I've come to love myself, with and without makeup, which is something that has been hard and long to finally reach. But it was worth it all.
Of course, I’m still an anxious person, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t be confident. The two things butt heads and conflict constantly and it’s hard, but if I work hard and try to keep my mind focused on the end goal, confidence can still rise above the anxiety. And we all know insecurity is inevitable, it’s going to happen. Down days are going to happen. I’m not saying that I’m confident 100% of the time, because I know I’m not. But those thoughts/days don’t mean you don’t have or can’t have confidence. We’re human these thoughts happen. Any progress is good progress.
At the end of the day, if you like who you are and like what you stand for you shouldn’t be afraid to show it. Find people in your life that make you feel confident, happy, and accept you for you. Because why would you want people in your life who don’t make you feel like that?
Be unapologetically you.