There I said it
If you are a dude, you are probably thinking this has nothing to do with you.
Oh, but it does.
We are all under pressure to conform to some society expectation based on our age, gender, perceived social status, education etc…
It can be about our looks, what we wear, were we shop, which salon or barbershop we use, what brand of shoes or handbag we strut, who we are spotted with, who we marry…
We all have the need to fit in, be accepted and loved.
This means that sometimes, we will feel the need to bend over backwards for others.
But the question is how far do you go outside your core identity to fit this expectation?
One of the biggest debates I have been having with myself this year is what kind of personal brand do I want to build?
As I am a woman, it seems expected that my personal style of dress and grooming will form an important part of that brand.
One day, I showed one of my video clips to a video expert to give some positive criticism.
He had one recommendation: I should wear more make-up.
Ok, wait a minute. In this video, I am already wearing more make-up than usual.
I actually own an almost full make-up kit with lip stick, liquid eye liners, lip gloss, foundation, concealers, eye shadow, mascara which I never use (oh thanks saleslady for convincing me to buy, saying every lady must have mascara. I didn’t get that memo)
My point is I have tried. I still hate make-up.
Maybe I just don’t know how to apply it? Well, I have also paid other people to do it for me. In all instances, I go into the bathroom to remove some of it. No matter how much I tell them, I really need my make-up to be subtle, it still feels like it’s too much.
Even on my wedding day I remember being irritated with how much make-up was put on my face. It’s also the only time I ever wore artificial nails.
I am not blind to this fact: make-up does enhance beauty.
It’s a fact that if I post a picture of myself looking a lil’ more gorgeous due to make-up, it will get higher organic reach because humans love beauty and higher visibility is good for marketing.
So, do I do something I hate because it might be good for marketing or do I just be me and give my best in terms of service(which is also good marketing)?
Do you go against your natural instincts and inclinations in order to fit in? To be more appreciated or accepted while hating what you do?
Do you continue in a job you hate because others think it’s a dream job? Do you avoid being a full time home maker even when you know you would be happier because a professional, empowered man or woman shouldn’t do that? Only school drop-outs should be housewives, right?
Doing you continue saying yes to other people’s requests just to avoid conflict or to maintain friendships?
Do you keep selling on credit when you really wish you could ask for cash?
Do you keep using your hard-earned skill to “HELP” others when deep down you know you should be getting paid for it?
The need to be acceptable and accepted is natural and valid but we must understand that this need could keep us trapped in an activity that sucks the life out of us. Then what’s the point?
I understand the need for balance. You certainly don’t want to go around town completely naked because you hate clothes. Although I hear there are some nudist mini cities somewhere.
Go for balance but don’t loose yourself or your joy doing something just to fit it.
I am getting rid of more than half my make-up stuff. Maybe I will look less professional, less diva-like but this is me.
What are you giving up in order to live a more authentic life?