What did it take for you to love yourself?

Women who look like this are too pretty to have low self-esteem, right?

This is THE POST that inspired THE POST that started the conversation that Execumama built.

For women (and I’m sure a fair amount of men too), getting comfortable in our own skin takes a whole lot of speed bumps and broken hearts before we get There.  There is the place that allows us to remember that we can’t change the angle of our nose, the curl pattern of our hair, or the length of our torso, but we can decide to embrace the unique person we’ve become and move past the need to defend who and how we are.  There is a place that comes with trap doors that when we’re not careful, take us back to the uncomfortable place in grade school where we wear the labels (unpopular, unattractive, un-somethingorother) as if we have no choice but to be what people say we are.  Eventually—through time, experience, and maturity, we being to explore self-love: that slippery, yet attainable skill that reminds us how right we are, imperfections notwithstanding.

Somehow though, the consensus is that the Ever Pretty women–you know, the ones who could fit—albeit barely, in the Halle Berry category with just the right amount of sun-kissed pigmentation that renders them “not too dark, not too light”; the body that fits neatly into the right-off-the-rack outfits; and the hair that looks great long, short, or anything in between, don’t have these issues to ponder.  The word on the street is that if as a woman, you have “the look”, then life is inherently easy, and that you should be able to get, do, and be anything you want.

For the Ever Pretty girl, especially if she happens to be a good student who grows up to attain some reasonable level of success, her self-esteem should be off-the-charts high and, for the most part, all should be well.  After all, the Ever Pretty woman gets to go clubbing without the um, shall we say “inconvenience” of having to buy her own drink, she gets to be that Wallet Massager for whom otherwise sensible men willingly shell out the dough, and she gets to raise a man’s social status (a pretty woman on a man’s arm is a door-opener, and you know it!), simply by being herself.  She’s good to go, right? No self-esteem slayer there?

Newsflash: Self-esteem IS NOT tethered to external perceptions of beauty, and for many, that concept is a rather hard sell! Think Eric Benet and Halle Berry.  The opinions whizzed past our ears and onto the magazine pages, radio and TV shows alike: “Daaaamn, not even Halle Berry could keep a man; then there is definitely no hope for “regular” chics!”

I had two very specific responses for this still-rampant mentality, and more than twenty people left their perspectives, not devoid of their own hard-earned lessons in beauty and self, and they’re worth pondering, believe me.

READ MORE HERE, then come back and tell me what it took for you to learn (or even consider) that beauty lies within the realizing of your worth and not the external picture painted by the vision of others’ view on you.

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