Once upon a time I couldn’t leave the house unless my hair or face was looking on point. Especially my hair. I’m sure we’ve all done this, and still do. But relying on your looks for self-confidence can become a problem. I used to make sure I had braids or a weave and skipped school if my natural hair was out. I used to make sure I wore makeup before going anywhere, even if it was for a short period of time.
Making sure I looked good became such a normal thing that I didn’t realise I was neglecting my real self. I didn’t really think about what my values were, or what made me happy. I mean, when is that ever talked about in today’s society? There’s always a hack for anything that involves our appearance. Those “Basic to baddie” videos on YouTube basically say to me that I’m not worthy unless I’m wearing make up? Not to mention, the filters on Snapchat that make us forget what a real, blemished face looks like. Or public figures like Kim Kardashian having millions of Instagram followers influenced to be so image obsessed.
I’ve learnt that you can buy all the cosmetics, do the works on your body, change your hair as many times as you like, but if you don’t feel good inside, you’ll always feel empty. I’ve been there. Watched too many people, tried many looks but I didn’t know who I was. What’s the point? Who wants to know you just for your looks anyway? We are more than that!
Fast-forward to now and all I can say is that, I don’t feel the need to look in every mirror I see to adjust myself. I don’t care if you don’t like how I have my hair, and sometimes I don’t care if I’m not wearing make up out. What matters to me is what I say, my progress in self-development and what makes me happy. All of that adds so much more value to me, and my self-esteem than how I look. I can talk freely about my interest in self-help, the books I read and documentaries I watch about the universe and quantum physics confidently. I can’t lie; I love the eyeliner, lipstick and wearing nice clothes. But that’s not the only thing that makes me feel good. I no longer feel empty because how I choose to look is not based on what anyone thinks. How I choose to see myself is on my OWN terms. And that right there is liberation at its finest.
I have a lot more respect for myself and I feel understood more because I no longer have to filter what I say. When I look on social media, I admire people from afar, but I no longer want to be like them. It’s easy to get caught up in all of our insecurities, and I can’t say that all of mine have disappeared. However I have noticed that when I pay less attention to my inner self, that’s when things go downhill. It’s always important to find ways to get back to you. Always. Self-expression, being creative in art or writing, meditation, reading meaningful stuff about spirituality and life, and eating well are some ways to keeps me sane, centered and focused. We can all find what brings us back to us, let’s not be prisoners of societies expectations and find who we really are.
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