The image copy here is taken from our Sept/Oct flip magazine in the archive. To the right of the images, you can find the typed version for easier reading.
Understanding Why You are Great
Even If No One Sees It
For you girls who wake up in the morning feeling you are prettier and better than most and have no problem asking people to “Vote for Me!” repeatedly for this and that, this message is not for you. If you wake up exhausted from trying to hold on to the thought that you really do have value, even though it seems no one sees it, you are my target audience.
Tiara toddlers are not likely to understand what is written here. However, when they wake up one day with the real world telling them that they are not actually the embodiment of perfection despite what their pageant parents have told them their whole life… they may find this article useful, even if they are not currently able to fully empathize.
Being surrounded by modeling and acting friends who were literally in theatrically released films and on the covers of Vogue and Marie Claire, I never thought I was all that good looking. Getting a few degrees, but not with a 3.8 or higher, I felt I was not very bright. I have always surrounded myself with people smarter, prettier, and more successful than myself because I love learning and being around greatness. The challenge had come in seeing my own worth because of the inevitable comparison with those around me. The reward has been that I never get a big head, which in my opinion, is one of the ugliest traits a person can have, particularly when the overly elevated self-opinion is unmerited.
I say I don’t like it, but must admit, there are times I am envious. I am not capable of understanding it to be honest. How does one so unappealing physically, emotionally, intellectually, and socially say to the world, “Oh you want this!” and really mean it? #bafflesmymind
More than an agency, An Environment for Like Minded People
In general, Charisma+2 attracts girls that have had a tough road in life. Many have been abused or generally devalued. I suppose it is not that surprising. C+2 was built as a safe haven for girls to become their best, well-rounded selves. We do not allow superiority complexes, drama, or disrespect. These rules naturally weeds out those types of girls and attracts a different type, many of whom just want to feel some sense of self worth and have a bit of fun along the way. I target gamers because I am one, but the appeal of having a safe zone for growth is clearly more widespread. In fact, somewhere in America a woman is battered, usually by her intimate partner, every 15 seconds (UN Study On The Status of Women, Year 2000). A study reported in the New York Times suggests that one in five adolescent girls become the victims of physical or sexual violence, or both, in a dating relationship (New York Times, 2001, August 8). One out of every six America women have been the victims of an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime (Prevalence, Incidence, and Consequences of Violence Against Women Survey, National Institute of Justice and Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 1998). The FBI estimates that only 37% of all rapes are reported to the police. U.S. Justice Department statistics are even lower with 26% of all rapes or attempted rapes being reported to law enforcement officials. With statistics like that, surely female gamers are not excluded.
So What Now?
Many of the C+2 models and I have had to learn we are great because of the journey. We have had to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps so many times, that sometimes the straps have just worn thin and have broken. That is when we realize we had best adapt to strapless boots because we are not giving up. We can’t.
I lost a sweetheart of a friend this year who finally gave in to the pain and gave up. It is sad she had to pass away in order to have so many people express their love and appreciation for her. And yet, I can sympathize with her weariness in going on. Please, girls, no matter how tragic things seem, no matter how much you feel like no one truly values you, do not give in to the belief you are worthless or that there is no hope. You must make yourself adapt. I am not saying that it is easy. I am saying that it is not nearly as hopeless as it seems.
How do you adapt? You must seize those low times and turn them into something magnificent. My biggest achievements came on the heels of my most depressing disappointments. These successes seemed to take forever because I was in the dark place. Looking back, it was during these “forever” moments that I was being forged into the person capable of not only handling my upcoming success but fully appreciating it. Whether it was in business when I got a job rejection, which spurred me onto creating Charisma+2, or in my personal life when I (thankfully) did not get a long awaited proposal but then found my perfect mate.
Having survived some hard events in life and growing past disappointments, I feel grateful because I know that no matter what comes up, no matter how tragic or disheartening, I know I have been through worse times and I can make it though the current darkness. This is one of the advantages to having had to survive abusive or really hard times. Whatever you are currently going through, you can say, “I’ve been through worse” and you can know without a shadow of a doubt, you will survive! Currently, whenever I receive a slap down, I stop myself from asking, “Why!” and replace it with, “Ok, what now?” For me, I never seem to have enough time, so when something I have hoped for doesn’t come to pass, I take that time of an unfulfilled dream to build a new timeless for a new dream or adjust my path to achieve and established dream.
I build a new destiny or avenue. Sometimes, if that is just too hard to see because the wound is fresh, I start by cleaning my house. True Story. Cleaning out my closets, storage places, and office clears my mind and helps to eliminate the dead space of time to wallow in pain. If you look at it, it is merely a physical manifestation of throwing out old things that no longer work or are useful for you. It is incredibly therapeutic. About the time I have a clean space to work and live, my hope seems to naturally be restored. I have the space in y mind, heart, and life to think of a better direction. In any case, I am able to sit down with a nice cup of hot tea in my new clean room and see that I made it through hard times before and actually become a wiser, better person in the process.
It is not always easy. After years, I still have to remind myself, so I am not saying this as some sort of guru by any means. I just know how it feels to recognize that you have something great to offer but no one sees it. So don’t give up. Accept your disappointment or pain, ask yourself better questions, and make a plan to get to new or redirected goals. The greatness is in the journey.