Having smashed through the hilariously witty novel ‘Not That Kind of Girl,’ I just had to share with you how incredibly f*cking awesome it is and the 10 things I have ‘learned.’
1. Lena is ridiculously talented. Actress, director, writer, and independent strong women who don’t need no man (or woman for that matter). Her humble success seeps through the pages of this book and episodes of her TV show ‘Girls,’ injecting me with drive and excitement that I too one day could accomplish great things.
2. Even though there’s no such thing as ‘normal,’ Lena makes all of your bizarre, morally incorrect, questionable and somewhat insane ideas seem, well… normal.
3. You deserve nothing less than the best, especially when it comes to relationships. All those little doubts that we have in our mind about ourselves are absolutely obliterated by the following passage.
“Being treated like shit is not an amusing game or a transgressive intellectual experiment. It’s something you accept, condone, and learn to believe you deserve. This is so simple. But I tried so hard to make it complicated.”
4. We don’t need to confine to labels. Whether it be single, in a relationship, gay, straight, bi, happy, sad, anxious, crazy, fat, skinny… as soon as we assume one of these labels, it leads us to subconsciously act and think in a certain way relating to that label. Lena discusses her ‘girl crush’ and how she hates using the term because it implies inferiority to other crushes or relationships. But the fact of the matter is, that happy people can have sad days, straight people can be attracted to someone of the same sex, and even though it’s hot at 30degrees outside, it can still rain.
5. Confidence is the most timeless fashion you can wear.
6. Girls have quite a lot of shit to deal with at any one time. She splits her book up into various parts addressing issues like; body image and self confidence, sex, sexuality and relationships, family and friends, careers and pursuits and everything in between. If anything, this book is an ode to women and all that we can do and are capable of doing/dealing with at any one time.
7. Challenge yourself! Because great things don’t happen to you in the warmth and familiarity of your comfort zone.
“It’s not brave to do something that doesn’t scare you.”
8. Break ups are tough and there’s no easy or right way to do it. Having just dealt with a break up of my own, it’s hard to come to terms with the whole concept of love, being single again and just readjusting to a life without that someone special. Whilst I was the one who ended things, my heart felt just as broken. However, Lena made me feel brave and empowered that I had put my heart and emotions first and that ultimately was taking control of who I wanted to be and where I wanted to go. It was an absolutely terrifying experience but at the end of the day, I know it’s for the best for both of us and that a few months from now I’ll be able to look back on that relationship with fond memories.
9. Keep on writing and keep on telling my story. I sometimes feel a little hesitant to write, let alone call myself a writer of any description because I guess sometimes I don’t feel qualified to write about the sort of things I do or that I haven’t had enough life experience. But the thing is that everyone has a different perspective on something, different values and different experiences which shared with the world, can contribute to a better understanding of one another.
“There is nothing gutsier to me than a person announcing that their story is one that deserves to be told, especially if that person is a woman. As hard as we have worked and as far as we have come, there are still so many forces conspiring to tell women that our concerns are petty, our opinions aren’t needed, that we lack the gravitas necessary for our stories to matter. That personal writing by women is no more than an exercise in vanity and that we should appreciate this new world for women, sit down, and shut up.”
10. Each and every one of you reading this is beautiful. I think this is an idea that will take a while to fully internalise, but it’s definitely growing on me. After finishing this book, with a smile on my face, I had an amazing realisation that I am me. If someone doesn’t like that, that’s not my problem at all. I feel like I’ve discovered a new found self confidence where I’m not afraid to let the real me show and flaunt my flaws.
So I hope this has inspired you to run down to your local book shop and devour her tasteful words.