Why do people act like you have to choose between caring about being smart and caring about how you look?  There has always been a myth that women who care about their appearance must be stupid, vain, or overtly sexual.  Because who has time to focus on their appearance if they are smart and taking care of business, right?  Wrong!  Well I’m here to tell you that you can have both.

beauty and brainsThose who know me personally know that I highly value education.  You can see from my website that I promote education and believe it is one of the keys to success.  I worked very hard for my education, it wasn’t easy.  I was never a tradition college student; it took me eleven years to earn my Bachelor’s degree.  There were times that it was so hard I wanted to give up.  But I didn’t because I wanted a better life for myself and I knew education was a part of it.  And in all honesty, I also wanted to prove the naysayers wrong who said I couldn’t do it!  There were NUMEROUS times that I had to stop, but then as soon as I could, I would take more classes.  Then I overcame even more challenges while working on my Master’s degree.  Now the next step is my Doctorate.  Which I am waiting until I get my daughter successfully through high school and off to college before I pursue this next goal.

It isn’t just about a “classroom” education either.  I am ALWAYS reading books, going to museums, researching other cultures, places, and things.  I enjoy attending various workshops, seminars, and meetings.  I LOVE knowledge and I CRAVE wisdom.  I love writing and the beauty of words and am beatific about advanced vocabulary!

  1. Disquisition – A long elaborate essay or discussion.
  2. Smarmy – Ingratiate perception of being insincere or excessive.  (one definition often times leads to another)
  3. Ingratiate – Bring oneself into favor with someone by flattering.
  4. Dolt – A stupid person.  (want to insult someone without them even realizing it?  Call them a dolt lol)
  5. Fulcrum – Something that plays a central or essential role in a situation.
  6. Inchoate – Not fully formed or developed.
  7. Valorize – Give value to.
  8. Draconian – Excessively harsh.  (I’ve dealt with many a draconian personality in my day!)
  9. Fixity – Unchanging or permanent.
  10. Bricolage – Constructed or created from a diverse range of things.  (That’s ME! Lol)

Mmm Mmm good! I could go on and on, but I won’t bore you with my love of words.

Beauty Is Her Name – So now, as much as I care about education, wisdom, and knowledge – I also care about beauty.  I am a girly girl!  For starters pink is my favorite color.  I loved Barbie dolls growing up.  I love getting my hair done.  I love clothes.  Now in fairness, I am not a fashionista, I have several friends who are REALLY into fashion and I can’t hang with them, but I do love clothes.  I love femininity.  I am so happy that God made me a woman!  I love dresses, shoes, and purses.  I do not wear make-up daily (personal preference and laziness!) but I do love make-up.  I even love being a shorty, I’m only 4’11 for those who have never seen me in person!  I absolutely love being a Black woman.  I love the diversity in our race, we are like a rainbow.

In my family, we are very shapely, calling all my Snead’s!  We come right out of the womb with butts, hips, thighs, and those Snead legs!  We all have family traits, what are yours?  Is it your height (tall or short), color, hair, breast, skin, eye color, or your smile.  Why should you hide it or pretend you don’t have it just to prove to people that you are smart?  Whatever your natural beauty is, enjoy it!

Kandi-Stay-Prayed-UpSome of the most beautiful women are also a boss!  Tyra Banks, Kimora Lee Simmons, Beyoncé, Angelina Jolie, Eva Mendes, Jennifer Lopez, Michelle Obama, Sofia Vergara, Kandi Burruss…..the list could go on.

And the issue isn’t just about being beautiful, it is about investing in your appearance.  When a woman cares about her appearance people often label her as vain, or overly sexual.  This is a trap that many women fall in, but this is simply not true.  Caring about your appearance is about valuing yourself.  It isn’t even about the opposite sex.  How do you feel about YOU?  Are you worth taking the time to be clean, groomed, tailored, polished?  As women we spend so much time taking care of everyone else, but what about YOU?  It is not selfish to care about yourself and how you present yourself to the world.  You have to take care of yourself before you can take care of others.

As for the women that I work with as a Social Worker, who are trying to change their lives, I want you all to know that you should also work on your appearance while you are working on other areas of your life, like your education and career.  It is important to improve your OVERALL self, both inside and out.

  • Go back to school – start a health living plan.
  • Start a career – build your professional wardrobe.
  • Learn to speak better – get your teeth straitened and/or whitened.
  • Walking into your future – get some better shoes.
  • Build your mind with knowledge – Get that hair together girl!

For everything you do to the inside to increase your knowledge, do something to your exterior as well.  I don’t care what anybody says, appearance matters.  How you present yourself will influence your ability to advance.  Don’t fall for the Okey-Doke!  You CAN have both Beauty and Brains, you don’t have to choose between the two.  And when you have both, you will be a force to be reckoned with!

I want to hear from YOU!  What do you think about having both beauty and brains?  Do you think you have to choose, or can you have both?  Do you have (or want) both?  Please share.

Love, Tonia

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