This shirt is too sparkly. This one is too bright.
That magazine article said hot pink lips aren’t appropriate for my age at the office.
These braids look a little crazy.
I can’t wear eye shadow with that much glitter.
Winged eyeliner looks like I’m trying too hard.
I love those heels, but they make me look unprofessional.
That leather jacket makes me look too goth.
Jeans with holes? I can’t.
There’s no better place to realize how many limitations we put on ourselves as women as in our own closets. How many times have you really wanted to wear something but worried what others would think? How many times have you wondered if you’re “too old” for something or “not that kind of person” to wear that piece you love?
The thing is, if it was just about wardrobes, maybe we would be okay. But for so many women, these fears of being “too much” creep into all other aspects of our lives.
We worry they’ll think we’re too bossy in our meeting because we spoke up.
We worry they’ll think we’re too mean if we say “no.”
We worry they’ll think we’re too boyish if we skip the makeup.
We worry they’ll think we’re too boring if we live a simple life.
As women, I find we’re always worried about being “too” something or other.
Too loud. Too passive. Too assertive. Too sexy. Too fat. Too thin. Too smart. Too uneducated. Too busy. Too calm. Too– you fill in the blank.
It’s not our faults, not really. From the time we’re young, we’re primed for this “too” battle. We’re taught in so many ways that as women, we need to be careful. We don’t want to be perceived as mean or bossy or loud or rude. We’re taught to follow the rules always, and never seem like a “bad girl.”
Rules are good. Kindness is good. But sometimes, what others think of us becomes so engrained in our personalities, we lose who we really are. We spend more time in other people’s heads trying to see ourselves that we stop hearing our inner selves. I think that’s where the problem is.
So this week, I hope you really stop thinking about being “too” whatever your word is. I hope you show kindness and grace in the world, but I hope you know you are more than just that. You are exactly who you are supposed to be. You love exactly what you are supposed to love. I hope you find the courage to show the world that, even if they aren’t ready to hear it yet–because I’m ready. You’re ready. So many women are ready to see real, genuine women.
Let’s show the world what we’ve got.
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USA TODAY Bestselling Thriller author with Avon Books (HarperCollins), The Widow Next Door, The Diary of a Serial Killer's Daughter, and other creepy thriller books