August 31, 2016

To My Fellow Women: Don’t Be Afraid To Take Up Space

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Elliott Dunning
Elliott Dunning

Don’t be afraid to be who you are completely unapologetically. That is the key to life. Don’t ever wrap up who you are under a pretty bow because you think it will impress someone.

Be loud. Laugh at your own jokes. Love yourself. Burp after you shotgun a beer. Eat the cheeseburger you’re craving when everyone else is eating a salad. Share whatever is on your mind.

But whatever you do, don’t apologize for being you.

Stop saying sorry when you have no reason to apologize, stop justifying yourself by overusing the word “just” when you want something. “I’ll just have one slice of pizza.” No, if you want a piece of pizza, take a piece of pizza and eat it, don’t justify what you’re doing. If you want five slices because you’re hungry, have five. Hell, have the whole pizza if you want. Don’t let anyone make you feel bad about it.

The only thing that matters if how you feel about yourself – that’s it. It’s really that simple. If you feel happy and healthy and love what your doing and are proud of yourself, who gives a crap what anyone else thinks?

Take pride in your work; post the selfie you think you look good in, even if you just posted three others before it. Don’t laugh at jokes when they’re not funny, don’t fake an orgasm to boost and comfort his self-esteem.

Don’t dull yourself down just to make others feel better.

Don’t let people interrupt you, don’t let people make you feel embarrassed or shame you for being excited over something. Don’t quiet your voice when you want to be heard because you might have an unpopular opinion about a certain topic. Instead announce it, talk about it, challenge people to listen to your side of the story and don’t ever let anyone make you feel stupid for your opinion.

Accept yourself always, even when others don’t. If you want to dye your hair blue, then go for it if it’s going to make you happy. If you want to ask a guy out on a date, screw societal norms and ask him on the date. If you want to have a child on your own then have a child on your own. If you want to travel the world then book a plane ticket and go. If you’re perfectly happy living a comfortable life at a desk job then be the best damn employee in the office.

Do whatever the hell you want to do and don’t ever apologize for it.

You don’t owe someone an explanation; if you don’t want to go on a date with someone instead of making up an imaginary boyfriend, just say no. You don’t owe anyone a date.

Be who you are and let that empower you and others.

Don’t ever be afraid to take up space.

Don’t ever set aside who you are and your comfort to make more room for someone else, because you matter.

You were put on this earth for a reason – to be seen and to be heard. Don’t allow someone to squash you, be you and be damn proud of that. TC mark

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