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Both/and

As a young woman I thought I had to conform to certain ways.

I thought I had to be preppy or sporty, fun or serious, smart or dumb, ambitious or lazy. I thought I had to choose and I thought all my choices had to line up.

I thought I could never be an over achiever at work and lazy about cleaning my apartment, I had to be an over achiever ALL the time. I thought if I listened to rap music that I couldn’t also like church. So in my early twenties, I chose church. I thought that if I was fun people wouldn’t take me seriously, so I chose to be serious and not let my guard down too much.

It was like I had to fit into this perfect box. Only, I was the only one building and evaluating the box.

And I’m not sure when it happened, but I made a shift– and I told myself that it was okay to be both — to like this and that. And an entirely new world opened up for me.

Here are a few things that I love and that may seem contradictory.

Rap and Jesus. When I work out, I LOVE angry rap. I have nothing to be angry about, but I love it. I pump iron and bob my head like I’m Iggy. And, I love Jesus. I love Jesus and the Good Word and church and praying. Both/and.

Sports and Dresses. I love watching sports, I love listening to sports talk radio. I love rooting for a team. I love rivalries. I love friendly trash talk. I also love dressing up in gowns, having the door opened for me and having gentleman stand up when I leave a table. Both/and.

Goals and Television. I love setting goals, working toward them, making progress and achieving them. I also love binge watching 30 Rock with a huge tub of popcorn. Both/and.

Girls Night and Alone Time. I love hanging out with new friends and old friends. I love creating bonds. I love creating a sense of community. I also love being alone. I love eating a quiet meal alone, shopping alone and watching a good movie…alone. Both/and.

Health and Cake. I am a health enthusiast. I read books, shop consciously, feed our family the cleanest, most wholesome food I can find. I am a proponent of being healthy not for weight, but for vitality. I also love cake, specifically the frosting on the cake. I dream of frosting from my favorite bakery. Both/and.

Serious and Irreverent. Most people would describe me as a serious person, I think. Maybe not. But in general, I’m clear on what I want, I don’t dilly dally, and when I say something – I always follow through. Also, I can be really irreverent and I can hold my own in the foul mouth/vulgar joke department. One of my favorite shows is, The League. Guys, it’s a show about friends in a fantasy football league. It’s beyond vulgar and the banter is lightning speed and I love it. Both/and.

The less I paint myself into a box, the more fun life has become. I mean, the point of it all is to enjoy ourselves, right? Let’s give ourselves the freedom to be both/and!

Post Author
Catia Holm

Catia Hernandez Holm inspires audiences through her candid and poignant motivational writings, videos, and her signature movement, the “Confidence Revolution.” She teaches women how to experience peace and joy, and how to make the most of their days. Through her writing and speaking, she pours energy into encouraging women to RISE and BECOME their most authentic selves and claim their power, peace and joy. Her debut book, The Courage to Become, will be released fall 2017. Catia is a proud wife and mama to two beautiful girls.

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