"I wish for once I was the pretty girl," I said out loud to one of my friends as I was scrolling through my Instagram. We didn't get hung up on the conversation for too long. We laughed it off, not taking anything too seriously and moved on, but my words stuck with me.
Who is "the pretty girl" that I wanted to be in that moment?
The pretty girl is the girl who has a reputation for her looks. The girl who always looks good in any photo of herself always has the right thing to say and appears to be perfect from afar. The pretty girl is the girl who other girls want to be, even if they don't say it out loud.
In the age of social media, we are given this pre-destined label based on who we appear to be. The soccer girl, the quiet girl, the outdoorsy girl, etc. As we place labels on ourselves, I have come to realize, why do we all want to be the pretty girl so bad?
She sounds boring. She sounds like she has too much free-time to take that many photos of herself. She lacks depth since she seems to have everything going well for her all the time. She lacks growth because she's always had it figured it out. So, what makes her seem so appealing?
The pretty girl is a universal symbol for average.
No matter how many Disney movies we watch that tell us to stand out, we all want to blend in. Nobody wants to feel like an outsider or incompatible to normality. The pretty girl blends in with the other pretty girls. You couldn't pick her out of a crowd. The filters are the same. The smile is fake. But we crave the idea of being held to some level of social hierarchy.
Even if you were born to be on the cover of Abercrombie and Fitch, your looks are not the thing that people should remember you by. Your impact on people's lives and the world around you are more important than how well you can plan your Instagram feed.
There is nothing wrong with wanting to look good and keep appearances, but it shouldn't be the foundation of what you are recognized for. When people see you walking by, don't you want them to think more of you then, "Oh, she's pretty."
You deserve more for yourself. You deserve to be more than someone who is only known for how they look. You should be known for the things you d0. The life you live. The impact you make on the world around you.
Besides, being bold, kind, courageous or intelligent are much more attractive traits.
Be the girl who helps her community.
The girl who never gave up on her dreams.
The girl who can outrun any guy on the track.
The girl who puts 100% effort into everything she does.
The girl who is ready to listen.
The girl who isn't afraid of a challenge.
The girl who is always wearing a smile.
Most importantly, you are more than just a pretty girl.