I have something to confess.
I am addicted to clothing. Anyone who has met me or seen my closet can attest to this. I have 50 lives worth of clothes stuffed on velvet hangers. However, this addiction goes further than simply having way too many graphic t-shirts for one woman. Fashion changed my life.
When I was in middle school, I struggled with body image issues. I felt as though I could never fully love myself if I didn't love my body. I would spend hours on YouTube looking up dieting videos. I focused so much energy on how to change my body.
Somehow along the way, I stumbled on the fashion side of YouTube. I started watching videos on how to style clothes, clothing hauls from fast fashion companies and more. Once I discovered the power of fashion and how it can influence your confidence, I shifted my focus from how my body looked to what I was wearing. I focused less on body rolls and more on circle skirts.
This change in focus helped me realize I can use fashion as a tool to help in my quest at building self-confidence. When I would wear an outfit that made me feel empowered, it felt like all of my body image issues were gone. As time has gone by, my confidence in who I am has grown tremendously.
However, self-confidence is something that takes time to achieve. No journey is linear. I still have days where I don’t feel confident and I want to hide my body under big sweatshirts. There is a notion that to be confident, you have to be confident every day. That is not the case. Fluctuations in self-confidence are completely normal.
On days where I don’t feel happy in my body, I try to wear something that makes me feel confident and secure in myself. In doing this, I am able to focus that negative energy on something positive by changing the focus from my body to my outfit.
If you are struggling with body image issues and are looking for a way to build confidence, I recommend using fashion to help cope. It changed my life and I hope it can help change yours, too.
With peace and love,
Allie Micaletti is the assistant engagement editor for The Daily Nebraskan. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org