Legs bare, chest out, hair straight, red lips, and a white-toothed smile. That’s when I felt sexiest. Nothing felt better than looking at the woman in the mirror and thinking, “Yeah, she could totally catch someone’s eye.”
Oh, how sweet that validation would taste when I did get approached by that guy at the bar. I’d tell myself, “Yes, you are sexy and desirable.” But on those nights when no one approached me, I didn’t have such great things to say to myself. I felt so lonely in those moments. The pit in my stomach was as hollow as the lies I’d begin to tell myself. I was convinced I‘d be alone forever, that I wasn’t worthy of anyone’s attention. Lizzo would not have been proud. I shake my head thinking of those days.
One morning I came home from a four mile run, looked into the mirror, and suddenly saw a badass woman staring back at me. Sweat was pouring down my face, no makeup, my lungs open like lavender. I felt so damn good. My skin was glowing. I was smiling. I felt sexy, and it was the best kind of sexy because I earned it.
5 a.m. runs, 5 p.m. boxing classes, and choosing only clean food to put into my body made me feel powerful for the first time in my life. I realized that before, all my confidence had been predicated on the response of a man’s attention. But you shouldn’t feel sexy because of someone else’s opinion of you. Deep down, true sexual awareness comes from self-love. I was able to achieve that by loving my body enough to take care of it.
Sexiness should be about feeling free in your body, not constricted. Find your inner wild. Stop judging every imperfection and find the beauty in it. Working out may not be your jam, so go out and find whatever it is that you’re good at. Being proud of yourself is the core of confidence.
This is not to say you will feel confident all day, every day. There will be days you need reminding. I am reminding you now. You are a sexy, badass babe! Check yourself out in the mirror when self-doubt comes knocking. Ask yourself why you’re feeling less than. Who told you you were? Write yourself a note that says “you are beautiful” and slap it on your mirror. Put a reminder in your phone. Do whatever it takes to show those negative thoughts the door. And if the guy doesn’t call or ask you out or reciprocate your feelings, this is not a reflection on you. You determine your worthiness. You determine your sexiness.
After this grand epiphany, I started dressing for myself and wearing whatever I felt good in. This meant less heels and more t-shirts and jeans. At heart, I’m a t-shirt girl all the way. You’ll still catch me wearing heels and a cute dress, but it’s because I want to, not to gain anyone’s attention. All the attention I need is within me.
I now look forward to every run because I know I am doing it for myself and my body, and nothing feels better than that.