Aisha Dee of 'The Bold Type' Taught the Crowd at Her Conference 2018 How to Accept Their Flaws

On The Bold Type, Aisha Dee's character Kat is rebellious, confident, and powerful. She's the woman we all want to be, and want to see our friends become. She enters a room knowing her worth, whether the room is filled with her best friends or a bunch of old, powerful white dudes. Her character feels tangible and real, and you connect with her almost instantly—and we felt the same way when we met Aisha Dee herself at this year's Her Conference.

During her keynote, Aisha Dee talked confidence. She talked about how we can become more confident in this one, simple way: Remind yourself that even your favorite people make mistakes. Even your favorite people are unsure of themselves, and trip on their words, and sometimes straight up do the wrong thing. Even Michelle Obama, Aisha noted, laughing, probably questions her strength, despite those killer arms. We all have our flaws.

Especially when you're in college, it can feel like everything is a make-or-break moment: if you don't stay up until 3am studying, you'll fail the test. If you bail on that friend, the entire friendship is over. If you don't land this internship, you'll never get your dream job.

But what Aisha wants us to know is that, as she put it, "If other people make up your validation, then they can take it away."

In a time where many of us (myself included, let's be real) sweat it if we don't hit 200 likes on that Instagram post, or have a major moment of panic when we send a "risky" text, it feels like other people's opinions are all that matters. They're impossible to escape, both in real life and online.

Knowing your worth means knowing your value, Aisha says, and it means committing to staying in touch with yourself, and the ones you love. One real and tangible way of making sure that happens is by sending the ones you love a note, or a letter. Then, when you open their response, whether immediately upon receipt, or years down the road, you'll always have this tiny snippet of who you were in that moment.

 

A post shared by Her Campus (@hercampus) on

 

In a world where, more often than not, confidence and power and respect is something that has to be fought for by women, especially women of color like Aisha, and queer women of color like her character Kat, there's something stunning about looking on stage and seeing a face like your own. More than one person noted how chill Aisha was. She didn't seem terrified of her crowd, or like she felt like she had to fight to be listened to. She knew her worth, she knew the value of her words, and she knew the value of the message she was leaving us with that afternoon: ask for what you want, and don't apologize for wanting it. Strength doesn't mean never making a mistake. And friendship means that with each step forward you take, you're bringing others with you.