What is sexy?
For me, it’s always been a difficult thing to define. And if you can’t define it, how can you be it?
What is this elusive thing that we seek - both in others and ourselves - yet can’t say for sure “yes that’s it- that’s it there”?
I guess things like media, advertising, film and popular culture have had pretty good stabs at defining sexy on a superficial level. And they use it to sell in very effective ways. And we all embrace and perpetuate these ideals in our everyday lives. The ideal that being sexy puts you into a different league altogether and that we should aspire to be it.
Growing up, there was always a sense that being what was deemed sexy was not for me. In my experience, it almost felt shameful in some ways. I often felt I was lowering myself to meet the ideals of the opposite sex, but paradoxically it was also too far above me to actually pull it off.
Being sexy was an unattainable thing for me to be. I could be cute, funny, attractive. Yes. All those things.
But not sexy.
Sexy was for the picture-perfect, sleek, clean looking models. Not for the chubby, introverted, clumsy me.
No, it is not for me.
My understanding of what sexy is has evolved over the years. I have seen people who are breaking the norm of what was stereotypically defined as sexy in mainstream media. For example, I love seeing burlesque performers who with incredible talent just ooze sex appeal.
And it has occurred to me what sexy is - and why I have always struggled with it.
Sexy ultimately translates into “I am confident in who I am”.
And I am not confident.
I am very good at pretending to be confident. When I do something brave, this is generally taken a lot of self-motivation and weighing up the odds. But I can just about pull it off.
I often feel like I’m eternally teetering; I’m on the edge of the diving board - timidly toeing the edge and wondering what it would be like to jump.
I know what I want but I don’t seem to have the self-belief that I can do it.
The things that are low risk or tried and tested - piece of cake. Jobs a goodun. I just get on with it like it doesn’t phase me.
But confidence... Real true self-belief and self-knowing. That still eludes me.
But I am learning.
I am learning that it is important how you perceive yourself - not how the world perceives you. It is not the permission, endorsement or approval of the world I need to give me this confidence and security. These are the things I need to give myself, so I can boldly go into the world.
Like jumping in the pool knowing it’s cold but it will be OK.
This takes time - almost as much time to write the original script is the time it takes to edit, erase and rephrase.
It’s like changing the narrative of the story. And the story is your life.
So maybe if feeling sexy, is just a small part of being confident.
I will be happy to be confident.