Okay ladies, pay close attention... we are strong, independent, women that know who we are and what we want in life, right? We are driven, have a purpose in this world, and no-one is going to stop us. A year ago, this was my dream. But that's the thing, it was only a dream. That doesn't mean anything if you're not actually living it. About four months ago, after my sexual assault, I decided to take the bull by the horns and turn that dream into my reality.
Growing up, I had very little self-confidence, okay that's being generous... more like NO self-confidence. I didn't think I was pretty enough, smart enough, or fun enough, and I lived worrying about what others would think of me. I let people walk all over me because I had no respect for myself and in turn, it led me to the lowest of lows.
Truly, in my heart, I believed I wasn't good enough for anyone or worthy of love so I gained attention from people and dated guys who treated me like a worthless piece of shit (excuse me language). But, it's true. It was until I was raped about one year ago, that I realized the way you view yourself is the way others will treat you. If you don't think you're worthy of respect, people will treat you disrespectfully. I was unhappy in almost every aspect of my life. I let people take advantage of me, I was always stressed out about work, and always accepted negative attention from people I was dating, all the way to friends. Basically, I let others control my life and I didn't do anything to stop it.
One day, my counselor recommended to me that I take myself out on a date. I needed to get dressed in something I felt confident in and do my make up and hair, not for anyone else but myself. I was to take myself out in a public place to do something I would enjoy, by myself. Whether it be going to dinner, going to see a movie, or pampering myself, there were no limits. While I was on this date with myself, I had to treat myself how I would want to be treated. I was not allowed to beat myself up or think negative thoughts. I was to compliment myself, and show my mind, body, and soul some respect. At first, this sounded strange, but I am a huge introvert and enjoy spending time alone so I was intrigued. But being nice to myself was a foreign concept. I took a deep breath, and decided to dive in head first.
The first time I took myself on a date I went to dinner at Nordstrom Cafe (one of my fav places) :) and did a little shopping...oops! I got glam and dressed up in a sassy outfit and decided to rock it with confidence. The entire time, I felt happy with myself and like I actually deserved this. It was a feeling I had NEVER experienced. I was hooked.
Now a few months later, and I make taking myself on dates once a month a priority in my life. Whether you're singe, in a relationship, or married, I think this is extremely beneficial. Spending positive time with myself has helped me realize that I am worthy of happiness and am more confident than ever. I am now more selective with who I surround myself with and the people I date. I now know what I deserve and know who I am and have the strength to not let anyone tell me otherwise.
This fall, make yourself a priority... you deserve it :)
PS This sweater is from Francesca's Boutique and is my absolute favorite for fall.