Monday, 8 December 2014

Looks Vs. Worth

I don't normally talk much about problems I still struggle with, I tend to focus on ones that I've overcome, but this week it seems important I share this with you. I've been on a small hiatus this week, as I've been in a little bit of inner turmoil. Lately, I've been struggling with my attitude towards things - and although this stems from my looks, and most predominantly my weight (I talked a little about this in my insecurities post), it inevitably impacts on other aspects of my life - this had this week included blogging. As children and teens - in fact, really even as adults - we are now taught to distinguish looks from worth, that one doesn't impact on the other. This is something I struggle to do for myself and, the more I think about it, the more it angers me that my looks have impacted upon my life and determined my worth for so long.

Let me tell you a little about growing up for me. I went to a less than average Primary School, where I thrived. I loved school, I thought reading was cool, I played hopscotch in the playground and I had a ton of cool friends that I'd known for as long as I can remember. When it came to High School, I knew that I wanted to go to my local Grammar School - my brother went to their brother school and at the time I thought he was the coolest thing in the world, so I applied. I passed with flying colours, although it meant waving my best friend off to another school (but she's still my best friend 10 years later, so it's all good), and I started the all girl's grammar school. Shortly after, I was placed into the Gifted and Talented programme, meaning that in my age group I averaged in the top 5% academically nationwide for the core three subjects - English, Maths and Science.

I quickly went from being the top of a lower level school, to the middle (at best) of a school full of confident, intelligent girls - but what rattled me most was how insecure I became. Unsure of my looks, surrounded by girls I couldn't see as anything but better and prettier than me day in day out, I started to lose focus and struggle in school. I didn't really notice this as much with my GCSE's, and with the bare amount of effort, I managed to scrape through with good enough grades to stay at my school for Sixth Form. This, for me, was when things really hit. I became obsessed with the way I looked - and so insecure that I couldn't even use a certain door to the Common Room as it meant passing the elite girls in my year, and I feared their judgement. I started to hate school, and all it encompassed, so I stopped going in. I would stay in a few hours then skip out, or I would be there playing bad games in the Maths Computer Room or reading magazines in the Common Room instead of being in the lessons that I should have been. Although I'd barely put any effort in - my less than great grades came as a real shock. Whilst all my friends went off to University, I started working at the Bistro and reveled in my new leaner body - all that seemed important to me for a really long time.

Now, the one thing that frustrates me the most in life is the fact that my baby face and blonde hair mean people talk down to me as though I'm stupid, I hate that my looks impact my worth - and yet I've come to realise that this is exactly what I let myself do to me, I have let my looks be more important than my worth - my intelligence, integrity and values - in my own eyes for so long that it's beyond a joke. I have reached the point in my life where I need to move forward, and I know that I need to start regarding my values and worth as so much more than the number on a scale, or the way my hair looks today, or I will let it overshadow my future opportunities like it has my past ones.

This isn't a post for sympathy - it's an explanation of my short absence, it's a promise for the future and, all in all, it's something I hope will make you think more positively about yourself, if you're anything like me. I am a girl made of thunder, I am all mouth (and too often no brain), I am fury and honesty and integrity - and I hope a hundred more things - and you know what, you all are too. The sooner we see the worth in ourselves, the sooner more others might start to regard it higher than our looks, too.

Do you sometimes let your looks impact your worth?

Sammy xo.

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