Loving oneself isn’t hard when you understand who and what ‘yourself’ is. It has nothing to do with the shape of your face, the size of your eyes, the length of your hair or the quality of your clothes. It’s so beyond all of those things and it’s what gives life to everything about you. Your own self is such a treasure. – Phylicia Rashad

This weekend I dared. I chopped off over a foot of my hair.

I’ve been wearing the same style most of my life – long, thick, straight with just the tiniest bit of layers. To give you some perspective, here are a few shots of my hair through my teens.

And here’s a more recent one –

Just the mere thought of cutting my hair would give me panic attacks (This is only 36% joke). My previous stylist eventually got tired and started telling me things I wanted to hear. Long hair looks great on you, she said.. Certainly didn’t help and made me less likely to experiment.

So what made me take the plunge this time? Well, since real life is so different from the larger than life Bollywood movies I am used to (shocker!), it’s hard to point my finger and pin down the one moment that helped make up my mind. There were a few though –

  • I was too attached to my hair. I didn’t like caring about it that much.
  • It’s hot AF in New York and I don’t have an AC. Nuff said.
  • In my attempt to keep my hair healthy, I stayed away from heat and other chemical products. The result – I had the same boring “style” every single day and I was getting tired of it.
  • Change of look for me was usually a change in color or the occasional addition of bangs.

A few weeks back, I got so frustrated that I grabbed a scissor, closed my eyes and chopped some of it off. Here’s a shot of that first step –

And, I survived! The world didn’t end. People didn’t stare at me judgmentally. Most of my co-workers didn’t even notice that there was anything different. That gave me the courage to try out something different – well that and the fact that my hair was now pretty uneven!

So here’s a picture of me with my new do. Still getting used to it, but I’m glad I did it. So, ladies if you’re on the fence and debating the idea of chopping off those long beautiful manes – here are 5 reasons why you should absolutely give it a shot.

  1. Short hair is sexy AF: Let’s face it, the portrayal of a strong, sexy, career-driven woman is usually depicted by an actress with short hair. Almost always in a Bollywood movie and maybe 50% in Hollywood. Think Halle Berry in Die Another Day, Priyanka Chopra in Dil Dhadakne Do or Preeti Zinta in Lakshya – Get the picture?
  2. It’s Liberating: Your hair forms a huge piece of your personality. But when it starts overpowering your personality, it’s time for a change. A dramatic physical change makes you realize that regardless of whether you love or hate the new do, the feeling will burn out. You will still be you.
  3. Your showers will be quick and amazing: More importantly, your shower drainage will never be clogged with hair.
  4. It will grow back: It’s just hair – it will grow back! Obviously, that doesn’t hold true if you have a serious medical condition. But then you won’t have those long manes in the first place, so really what the heck are you even freaking out about?
  5. Nobody cares: No one gives a s*** about your looks as much as you are convinced they do. And if they are so shallow as to form an opinion based on the length of your hair, then isn’t it time you reconsidered the people you hang out with?

Of course you will have those occasional moments, in the beginning, where you scare yourself when you look in the mirror and wonder “Where the F is it”. So, do yourself a favor and put it up in a nugget ponytail every now and then while you’re getting used to the new length and things will be peachy!