Everyone does the typical, “New Year, New Me” post where they explain what they have learned this year and sharing all the highs and lows. I’m here to tell you that unfortunately I’m about to do the same. I was very much set on not creating a post looking back on 2016, however as I sit on my couch at 2:34 am, trying to figure out what I want, what I need to fix, and what I need to do more of, I can’t help but stop and reflect.
So many times I have found myself standing in front of the mirror thinking, “wow”. I play around with my hair a little bit; do it over and over about five times until I give up. Then study my face. I lean really far in close to the mirror to check out how my skin is getting better. I’ll study my eyes, my eyebrows, my nose..
But now you see, this becomes a problem because “wow” means many different things.
“Wow, my acne has really cleared up.”
“Wow, my eyes are such a pretty green and gold today”
“Wow, my pores are really deep today I have to remember to put my medicine on”
“Wow, my hair looks AWFUL”
“Wow, I look a lot different from high school”
“Wow, my lips are the perfect color for my outfit, I don’t even need lipstick”
“Wow, I look 12. But I’m 21.”
“Wow. I look so ugly.”
I remember a time when I barely even took a glimpse in the mirror. If I did, it lasted three seconds and then I was off on my own. I remember a time when I was confident and didn’t care what others thought. I remember a time where I was happy with my weight and my appearance.
Where is that person on the days when I feel so low? I had the realization today that in every photo I classify as “a good photo of me”, I am happy and confident. Every single one captures a moment where I’m having the time of my life. The rest just seem like boring old me in my boring old life.
Before my realization I kept thinking, “What am I doing wrong? What can I change? My hair? My makeup? The way I smile? The placement of my hand? My outfit?”. Then it hit me, I need to be confident. I need to not worry in the moment the camera lense captures. I need to live and just let go.
So many of us have that problem where we just can’t seem to let go of whatever is bothering us. Whether that is your relationship status, appearance, mental health, friendships, health, work, school, timing… it can all be fixed with simple confidence, trust, and a little bit of letting go.
Today very fittingly, one of my best friends from high school looked at me and said, “You just have to be bold Hannah, just go for it” after I had explained how I would do so many things differently if I just had more of that impossible word: confidence. It made me think, yes sometimes I do have to take that giant leap and not focus on the what ifs. You can’t just say, “I wish, I wish, I wish” and not give it a try. Life is all full of risks and sometimes we fall but we can pick ourselves back up. The longer we stay down, the larger the damage to us. The quicker we get up, the quicker we see progress.
I’m telling you, if you look back and think of all the days you told yourself you looked good and all the times you think “wow, what a wonderful picture”, you will find in every single one of those moments you were happy. You embraced confidence.
Trust me, I know it’s not an easy thing to accept. We’re never going to have perfect lives or feel confident 100% of the time, but the least we can do is try. Give yourself a little slap over the face if that’s what you need to change your mood. Smile more, laugh more, don’t be afraid to giggle or snort. It’s YOU! And you are beautiful.
2016 has taught me that other people can remind you of how wonderful a person you are, but only you can convince yourself that they are being honest. 2016 has taught me that I am beautiful, especially when I’m happy and in the best of moods. 2016 has shown me that through all the trials and tribulations we have to stay confident so we don’t fall down so hard we can’t pick ourselves back up. 2016 has taught me it’s okay to lean on people a little. 2016 has taught me to learn from experiences and use them to mold yourself into a better you.
Don’t be afraid to take a step. Be confident in yourself. Tell that evil little burden on your shoulder you are beautiful. Confidence looks good on you. Wear it often.