As someone who has several friends that work on college campuses I am deeply troubled by the state of young women today. These women are under assault, not only by their peer groups and the media; but from themselves. As such, there are certain things that I want them to know. There is a seemingly endless list of things that I’d like to discuss in regards to young women today but as graduation season is upon us let’s consider this my (short) letter of recommendations to the female class of 2014.
I implore each of you to banish the following thoughts from your mind once and for all:
- “I’ll feel better about myself once I lose that weight, tone up my arms, get contacts, etc.”
- “I’ll be happy when I have a significant other.”
- “Can you believe her/that dress/those shoes?! I just don’t get it.”
1 &2: Do not place limitations on your own happiness. Confidence comes when you acknowledge who you are today and realize that tomorrow is full of endless possibilities. Do not place your contentment in the hands of another. That is not their responsibility and as such will only lead to disappointment. There is one person responsible for the life you lead and that person is you. Make it the life you WANT to lead.
3: As for the other girls? Judging others based on their appearance simply further perpetuates the downward slide of humanity. How are we to praise each other’s accomplishments when we are too busy picking apart their perceived faults? Instead, I challenge you to find something positive in every woman you encounter. Their taste in fashion, music, life style may not be yours, but that does not make it any less valid.
In closing, I’d like each of you to do me a favor. Every morning when you wake up, I’d like you to say the following to yourself in a mirror. “I am unique. I am beautiful. I am unstoppable.” And when you have the inevitable bad day do not lose heart. Remind yourself that you are not your yesterday. You are your own tomorrow. So own it, because it is YOURS. Now go forth and be unstoppable!