Having Self-Love

Growing up, I suffered from low self-esteem and I was never comfortable in the skin that I was in. As a dark skinned female, many people, especially in middle school (oh how I hated middle school) teased me because of the color of my skin. The irony behind this is that those same guys who teased me and refused to date me were DARK SKINNED as well! I tried everything from making sure my hair was done to having the latest brand named clothes so the focus would be off my skin color. Now, looking back on it, it’s difficult to fathom how unappreciative I was in the body that God specifically created for me. It wasn’t until I attended an after school program called, Teen Voices (which I’ll brag about in later posts) in high school did I start to develop self-love.

According to merriam-webster.com, self love is defined as, “regard for one’s own happiness or advantage.”

Throughout high school and during my first two years of college, I’ve evolved into a self-loving young woman. I do not let what other people, especially guys, think of me define who I am. I know I am smart, beautiful, caring, talented, etc. and I refuse to let self-hating individuals bring me down and lower my self-esteem.

It took me years to develop self-love; however, there are still some days where I feel insecure or down about myself. So here are a few things I do to uplift myself:

1. Set aside at least one day a week/ month devoted to treating myself, whether it may be going to the nail salon, getting my hair done, going shopping, reading encouraging Bible verses, hanging out with friends, watching my favorite movies, etc.

2. Writing encouraging post-it notes and putting them around my room/ bathroom.

3. Spending time with my family and friends and appreciating the people in my life.

Overall, I am a big advocator of practicing self-love, especially for teens and young women. I encourage all of you to schedule that day where you can take yourself on a date. Just enjoy the person you are, flaws and all!

-Bria

References:

1.http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/self-love

2. https://www.google.com/search?q=self+love&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=hK70VIGJAsmkgwTp9ICADw&ved=0CAcQ_AUoAQ&biw=1230&bih=621#imgdii=_&imgrc=ua2xRnaZ0PavhM%253A%3BINCg5JKAvZKuJM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.expresssuccess.net%252Fwp-content%252Fuploads%252Fself-love-lovesign.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.expresssuccess.net%252Fself-love%252F%3B425%3B282

Yes, I shop at thrift stores..so what?

Remember those days when your mom/dad would buy you clothes? I sure do! Every Thursday my mother would go to Macy’s or another department store and surprise me with a bag of clothes on my bed. But now, I’m no longer a teenager so I’m forced to buy my own clothes.

Believe it or not, shopping for clothes is HARD. I don’t know about you, but I’m very cheap with my money. Having to deal with other expenses such as textbooks, my phone bill or my credit card bill disables me from buying expensive clothing. Now, every once and while I’ll treat myself to a designer handbag or some cute designer jeans. However, I buy most of my clothes- specifically shirts and sweaters from thrift stores.

Here are a few myths about thrift stores:

1. Poor people are the only ones who shop there.

2. The clothes are dirty and worn out.

3. There are only old/ retro clothing in thrift stores.

These statements are all false- hence the keyword “myths.” People of all economic statuses thrift. Thrifting can allow a person to express their creativity through finding different clothing items and transforming items to fit a person’s style. Yes, some clothes may have rips or tears, but majority of the clothes I’ve seen are in great condition. Thrift stores do contain a lot of clothing that traces back to the 80s and 90s; however, modern clothing is present as well in many thrift stores.

Now, here are some benefits from shopping at a thrift store:

1. Pay less money for clothes

2. Allows you to express your unique style

3. Stores are located in almost every city/ town

4. Clothes are usually organized based on color/ style

5. You don’t have to worry about someone wearing the same outfit as you

I encourage all of you to consider shopping at a thrift store because you never know what you may find. My passion to be different is exemplified through my fashion; I would rather be unique than have the same style as every other female.

So let me reiterate again, there is NOTHING WRONG with thrifting. And if anyone scolds or judges you for shopping at a thrift store, flip yo’ hair and say “so what.”

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Having Hair Blues?

Remember the days when your mom used to do your hair? Or the only time you had to worry your hair being “laid” was on picture day, graduation, etc?

It started to get bad in high school, I was forced to come up with different hairstyles so I wouldn’t be categorized as boring. It wasn’t until I started college did it REALLY get worse. Whether it was having braids, getting weave, or buying countless overpriced hair products for my natural hair, maintaining my hair was a full-time job!

Now that I’m in my 20s, I’ve just learned to embrace my hair in all its glory- or lack of. I’ve came up with new and creative ways to utilize my “bad hair days.” I remember last week I was rushing to make it to class on time but my hair was not done. Instead of risking being late to class in order to spend 30+ minutes on developing a perfect hairstyle, I just got one of my chic scarves and made a hair wrap. I cannot even tell you how many compliments I received! And who would’ve thought I only spent 5 minutes creating this “oh so stylish” hair wrap.

Now, I’m not condoning going to class or to work having your hair look any ol’ kind of way. However, I am encouraging you ladies to think outside of the box and not let your hair, clothes, shoes, etc. control your life to where it becomes toxic. Sometimes those simple 5 minute styles receive the most compliments. Trust me, I know.

Hello world!

Hi my name is Bria and I am: a 20 year old college student from Boston, Christian, Black feminist, aspiring nutritionist, fashionista, natural hair lover, writer– and the list goes on. Second Decade Beauty is a blog designed for the 20-something year old female living in this 21st century. In today’s society, women in their 20s are more than “club hoppers;” we are: entrepreneurs, young professionals, mothers, college students, innovators, motivational speakers, cultural ambassadors, and so much more! I decided to create this site to empower women in their 20s based on my experiences and to also recognize women around the world who are doing amazing things in their 20s. Whether I may decide to write about health, beauty, politics, fashion, women’s issues, food, different cultures, religion, etc., this site will appeal to a multitude of women because we are all different and have different passions.

So let’s start celebrating our 20s!

Peace & Love,

Bria G.

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