Redefining Yourself

There was a time not that long ago that getting dressed up with cocktail dresses and the whole ordeal of getting ready for a fancy dinner, formal affair, or just going with friends for the night almost made me have a panic attack.  It was not a pretty scene.

Standard cargo pants and fleece at Island Beach State park in New Jersey. Photo taken by Looie Voorhees

Standard cargo pants and fleece at Island Beach State park in New Jersey. Photo taken by Looie Voorhees

I am not exaggerating about the level of tension it caused me, and it filled me with paralyzing terror.  I didn’t know why it made me so uncomfortable until yesterday.  I didn’t feel like I deserved the attention, the appreciation, or even a compliment.  If I did get any of those, I was awkward.  The idea of being worthy of attention without that feeling like it’s narcissistic is something I have been working on this year.

I didn’t put the two and two together until I had to get ready for a formal event the other day.  I didn’t really feel any of that crippling anxiety because I have the self-confidence to realize that I can dress like that, and I look like I belong there.  More importantly, I FEEL like I belong there.  Even a few months ago when I wore a cocktail dress, I felt slightly awkward.

The dress I wore to Arbonne's nation celebration. Photo taken by Danielle Baldassare.

The dress I wore to Arbonne’s nation celebration. Photo taken by Danielle Baldassare.

I am still much happier in cargo pants, t-shirts, and sneakers.  The fact that I can go to these events and feel accepted, deserving, and free is priceless.  It’s also a feeling I never thought I would have.  Little by little breaking down these walls I have in order to reach my full potential.

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