I recently started writing a blog about why confidence and self worth are really so important. i find myself constantly drawn to books, quotes, and trying to encourage other women on the subject. While writing last week i thought the root of the reason was my experiences. Negative and positive ones i’ve had that shaped who i am. Those still are a few of the reasons but i delayed posting it. Then a new situation where I consistently heard young men speak about women so negatively happened . it left me in complete shock and for the first few minutes i couldn’t even speak. and if you know me, you know that’s unlike me. i tend to snap back and get a little lippy. Mouthy for lack of a better term.
From a young age it’s instilled in someway or another what a woman looks like. We’re taught to be the nice girl, not necessarily speaking out and having a voice but quietly working hard as the boys without ever seeming too confident. Because although we ask women to be confident, as soon as they are, we quiet them down.. telling them it’s too much. We’re taught what humility looks like which normally for women is a response back of “no” to any compliment received. I could go on a tangent about that, but it’s not humility to shut down a compliment. It’s just rude.
But here’s why it’s important beyond our life experiences both good and bad. Because a foundation that’s built on someone else’s approval will fail you. We’re human and even with the best intentions, we’ll be let down. If it’s built on God (another topic for another day) and finding out who we are alone, the foundation will be strong. I wrote a blog recently how I’m starting from scratch with my foundation again at 30. It’s not easy, it’s definitely not fun, and it’s taking a lot longer then I would like. But I feel a different strength within me, and whether I’m reading, lifting, or taking care of myself in any way.. it’s for me. To better myself. It’s not for the approval of anyone else.
When i heard these men speaking about women in a way they NEVER speak about men (which is women and their bodies, what they need to fix with surgery and how beauty somehow relates to success for women but oddly enough not brought up when men’s success is the conversation) my heart broke. then i got furious. What came next.. one of these men TOLD the woman about her weight gain. i’m still so beyond words about that i could rage all day. but bottom line. we need self confidence for us. so when these incorrect and ignorant comments are made, we know who we are. so we can stand up for ourselves, leave the conversation and never think about the arrogant comments and to love ourselves even if we gain a few lbs. because the few extra lbs i carry, well that “man’s” opinion doesn’t matter especially as it spilled out of his entitled mouth to tell a woman his feelings on her weight. and so we can correct the behavior or at least try immediately.
So i’m sorry to the women who have time and again experienced this behavior from male “friends.” It’s not a friend or his right to ever have an opinion on your weight. The few close male friends i’ve had have never spoken to me with such disrespect even at my worst. even when i did gain weight, because they valued my heart and who i was as a person. These men tend to be the same ones to mansplain and talk down to women and then think telling you about “flaws” is helpful. Im going to be honest, the one time an ex-BF told me i gained weight and compared me to another woman… just made me want to gain more weight. women tend to not be encouraged with negative comments, and any man reading i highly suggest the next time you want to “help” her by telling her the flaws you see… shut your mouth. anything you view as a flaw has already been thought about by her for years and years, we’re already beating ourselves up about it. we don’t need your help. It will only be words that sting, stay with her, hurt her, and damage her self confidence. If a woman is changing physically because of some personal situations, ignore the weight, ask about her life. show you care about what's going on with her, not her weight.
I'm not trying to man-hate. I think there are some truly incredible men and definitely some in my life whom I cherish and am so thankful for. But I speak about women a lot, and don't always touch on the subject of men in our life that have an affect on us. Just as there are hurtful women, there are men that hurt us too. it was almost as if I was shielded from hearing these conversations until recently and couldn't believe how in depth they were about women and what should be "fixed."
self-confidence may be found sexy by your significant other, you may get enough courage to ask for a raise, to do the thing you’re scared to do, to meet new people, go on adventures alone, and so much more. But it’s really for you. At the end of the day for you to like who you are, and be able to reject and forget about any negative thing someone said about you. Do you like you? That’s what matters, brings happiness, draws out joy in others, and can even quiet your inner critic. oh and ladies, stop rejecting compliments, but definitely reject any negative words.