Reminisce with me if you will about the terrible good ole days of yore. High school. For some, even college. Those awkward, terrifying years where everyone else was perfect and we were weird. Nothing was right about us – our glasses were too thick, we had too much acne, we were too fat or too skinny, or just plain odd. Everything in high school seems tragic and there is no way we will possibly be the glowing, perfect versions of us that we want to be…
Fast forward 5, 10, 30 years down the line and we don’t give a shit anymore. We don’t remember the names of the girls who made fun of us for being “too” something. We aren’t super awkward anymore and we have even grown to love (or at least accept) the things we used to hate about ourselves. And if you are anything like me, this has affected your finances, for better or for worse.
What changes in spending habits occurred when I started loving myself? I’m glad you asked.
– Heels. Really, Erin? You are going to use a lame excuse like “self-acceptance” to justify buying cute shoes. Yes, yes I am. At 5’10”, I spent my high school years trying to shrink. (Ironic, as I spent my junior high years trying to grow.) As soon as I embraced my height, I found a love for 5 inch heels. Go big or go home, right? In fact, the only reason I get insecure about my height now is if I see a girl who is taller than me. I’m like, how dare you! Anyways, heels are pricier than flats. They are also prettier. So there.
– Jeans. Maybe this article has nothing to do with self-acceptance. It may just be about me justifying my purchases. Either way, once I got over hating myself, I came to an awesome realization. I have a great ass. I mean it’s just great. And I decided I was doing it a disservice by covering it with cheap, unflattering jeans. I started forking over more cash for my jeans. You know, for the sake of my ass.
– Tanning. I am the palest person ever. Like “the pigment factory called, your application was denied” white. I was also born in America – the one place in the world where fair skin is not revered, it’s shamed. So like every other pale, insecure teenager, I aimed to fix my fair skin woes via spray tanning. Just don’t do it – it is expensive, it doesn’t last long, it smells weird, and it gets streaky quick. It’s not so bad being pale. You won’t look like a leather bag by age 30 because of tanning and you are not likely to get confused with an Oompa Loompa.
– Hair. I have crazy, red 80s hair. It is curly, it is thick, and I hated every ounce of it in high school. I used to flat iron it. Every. Single. Day. Not only is that damaging, it’s a huge waste of time. I also used to dye it. I went black once, and I had red roots growing in. Picture that please. Red freaking roots. Just embrace your hair. Give it some love. And know that somewhere someone is green with envy because they wish they had your locks. (Note to my fellow redheads: Ignore people who say you are creepy and don’t have a soul. Or look them in the eye and start slowly tilting your head side to side while softly singing “la la, la la la, la la”. It freaks them out, it’s fantastic!)
Have you accepted yourself? If so, how has it affected your finances? If not, why the hell not? I can tell from here that you’re awesome!
[Image from Buzzfeed]