I like seeing things from others' perspective - especially guys'. Being a girl myself, I know well what insecurities females have. We struggle with being happy with our hair, not obsessing over the marks on or shade of our skin, and focusing on being healthy rather than skinny. I also know what females' opinions about guys tend to be. European accents, the ability to play guitar, or the traditional behavior of a gentleman are attractive. Then there's how we feel we're perceived by guys - we can't be too intelligent/serious or too ditsy/shallow, we have to keep up the natural look without 'letting ourselves go,' we have to be beautiful without being obsessed with beauty.
But then I read about guys, their insecurities, how they think girls view them, and what they really value in girls. Often their truest words surprise me. It makes me want to shout to the world - boys and girls alike - that when people tell us to just be ourselves, they really mean that. They don't mean they want a made-up, carefully polished version of our personalities. They mean they want the real, gritty us - acne, grating laugh, hatred of sports, and all. Today's generation has gotten so caught up in 'being real' that "the real you" has become a stereotype of its own. How twisted is that?
So I'm calling to people everywhere, but especially insecure teenagers, to let go of beauty and opinions concerning appearances and just be ourselves.
Girls: If you like the smoky eye look, then master it - without worrying that you don't look natural enough. But if you'd prefer to never catch sight of a makeup aisle, then why go there? If a clothing style from the eighties is making a comeback but makes you gag, feel free to hate it. But if you treasure your comfort, then don't make yourself miserable to be "acceptable." Whether you prefer reading memoirs or cheering at a football game, enjoy the hobbies that make you happy without thinking on the 'geek' or 'hot chick' stereotypes.
Guys: You love your truck but hate hunting. You write poetry but you still love being the star quarterback. So what if your interests don't seem to match up? They're what you enjoy doing. If you want to wear a tux and take your girl to prom, then you shouldn't feel bad for wanting to look nice. But if you would rather swallow nails, don't wear the monkey suit just because you think your girl would like it.
I'm not saying we should define life by what makes us happy, or refuse to prefer others over ourselves. What I'm saying is that we should stop freaking out over what that girl thinks of your outfit or whether your friends will think being a writer is corny. Stop trying to fit in a box built out of your own worries.
This rather opinionated post was inspired by some survey results I read. The survey asked guys their preferences in girls. The results proved that the majority of guys don't like nail polish, don't care what you wear, and prefer personality over beauty. It's true!