As part of an exercise for school I had to ask people who know me well to give me some of my positive traits. I was happy to see one of my nephews list Your sense of comfort with who you are. I’m glad he noticed.
i read so many women’s blogs and it surprises me how many women of all ages are simply not comfortable with who they are. Either they feel they need to change to get/keep/please a guy or they’re extremely self-critical, finding fault with everything from their appearance to their skills. It’s all based on what other people think, too. And it’s so pervasive there’s an entire industry–cosmetic surgery industry–around it.
What other people think. Boy, is THAT a trap.
When I hear women say “I want to have a facelift so I feel better about myself,” here’s what I hear: “I want to get a facelift and lipo so that when other people look at me they see a younger, hotter version of me.”
That’s what I hear and most of the time, that really is what they mean. Because if our society valued crow’s feet and a few extra pounds, believe me, women wouldn’t be subjecting themselves to these painful, expensive procedures. They’d be happy in themselves. They’d be confident women.
So, here’s what I say about that.
The world is full of people who like chocolate and others who like vanilla.
If someone doesn’t like you or a man isn’t attracted to you, that’s what it boils down to: chocolate or vanilla. There is nothing inherently wrong with either.
Or right with either. It’s just a preference.
A few years ago a man I know told me he was dating a close friend of mine who was recently divorced from someone I’ve known almost my whole life.
“I really like her; she’s nice, right?” he asked, with this little tentative tone.
“She’s GREAT!” I said. (And she is. She’s gorgeous and lively and fun. I love her!)
“So,” he said, “why would someone divorce a woman like that?”
The question took me by surprise. I could only respond, and it was a definitive response, “Chocolate or vanilla.”
So look. I know that I’m not everyone’s cup of tea, for a variety of reasons. But none of them matter. Because my life has shown me time and time again that it all comes down to chocolate or vanilla. A simple preference.
Which is why I have invested absolutely nothing in what other people think of me. I know who I am and I’m happy with that person. Sure, it would be super if everyone thought I was the greatest thing since sliced bread.
But not everyone likes bread. (The people who don’t? They must be crazy. Because I LOVE bread.)
At the end of my my nephew’s list, he added this: “I love your I’m me, and if you don’t like it go fu*k yourself attitude!”
I’m not sure I’d put it that way. But. If that’s my legacy to the young people in my life? I’m good with it.
I’m interested in your thoughts about confidence and self-image.