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Reading the headline you may be wondering how the heck a short dress could save someone’s life. I get it, it doesn’t quite make sense until you hear the whole story. I was a woman who struggled with insecurity and low self-esteem. I hated everything about myself, especially my physical appearance.

I was the woman who was so intentional about what I wore because I never wanted to draw attention to myself. My wardrobe consisted of your typical dress pants and plain blouses,  jeans and t-shirts, never any dresses. I hated my body so much that I never thought that I could look good in a dress, let alone a short one.

I had convinced myself that I could never wear a short dress until I had lost enough weight. I went so far as to print off a bunch of pictures of short dresses and hung them on my refrigerator and kitchen cabinets so I would see them every time I went to get something to eat.

The weight loss strategy did not work for me though. Eventually, I took the pictures down because they were not stopping me from eating. They were not motivating me to work out. They just continued to remind me of all the lies I continued to tell myself. 

Everything changed the day I decided to wear a short dress to church. Before I continue with that story I need to explain how the life-changing dress came to be. One Saturday morning a bunch of women from my church got into a charter bus and headed to Kansas City for a day of shopping.

By the time we had gotten to the last store, I still had not purchased any clothing. One reason was that I didn’t have a lot of money in my budget for clothing at the time and another reason is that I didn’t find anything that I thought would look good on me. 

As I was looking through the racks at the last store I found this really cute, short and very colorful, dress. I kept looking at it but kept telling myself that it would never look good on me. Some of the other women that were with me complimented the dress as well.

Finally, my pastor’s wife walked by and said, “That’s a really cute dress. You should get it.” If you knew this woman you knew right off that she understand fashion. She always looked great in everything she wore, and she had that eye to see what others would look good in as well. After debating it until it was almost time to load back up on the bus, I finally decided to buy the dress. 

With Sunday being the next day, I decided (after much debating in my head), that I should go ahead and wear the dress to church. I knew my pastor’s wife would be expecting to see me in it. Begrudgingly I put the dress on and left the house. Once I arrived at church, that is when everything started to change.

As I walked through the front doors I was greeted with a smile and complimented on the dress and how good I looked in it. As I continued to walk down the hall, the compliments kept coming. “That dress is so nice, You look so good in that dress, That dress fits you so well.” Those were just a few of the comments made.

By the time church service had ended, I could feel those negative thoughts in my head start to break off. Then I did something I would have never done before, I asked one of my friends to take a picture of me in the dress. 

When I looked at the picture a new thought appeared in my mind. A thought that had never been there before. A thought that I had never allowed myself to believe. “Wow, I actually do look good in this dress!”

My mind was blown that I had the thought AND believed it. I think that was the first time I smiled at those words and genuinely received the positive thoughts I was thinking about myself. 

After that moment my mindset about myself started changing, slowly, but changing nonetheless. I started looking at myself in a different light. I started to slowly change my wardrobe and started to wear clothes I had previously thought wouldn’t look good on me.

As I was growing in confidence about my appearance, others around me started to notice it and acknowledge it. This was the moment I feel like I truly started living my life. This was the moment the process started for me to find true love with myself. 

I share my story because I want to encourage other women that no matter how negative the thoughts in your head are, there is a way out! It’s going to take stepping out of your comfort zone to get to the promised land.

What is that thought that keeps allowing you to talk yourself out of things? Write that lie down, because that’s all it is, a lie. Write it down, crumple it up, and throw it away. Once you have done that, do the thing you’ve been afraid to do. Step out of your comfort zone and see where it takes you. You can also find other ways to love yourself here.

What is one thing that’s been holding you back? Write it in the comments below and let us know what happened when you stepped out.

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