Think of yourself naked. Or, if you’re somewhere you can do so and not be arrested, get naked and look at yourself in a mirror. If you’re like most women I know, you cringed at the thought and absolutely refused to do the act. All your (perceived) physical flaws reared their “ugly” heads; that inner critic of yours immediately started whispering that you are too this or too that, don’t have enough of the one, or too much of the other to be seen without clothes. I bet it even started picking on you for how you look IN your clothes right now! The nerve of that bastard eh?
It’s time to kick some inner critic ass. First, I want you to explain to the voice that Beauty is NOT:
- The size of your clothes
- The weight on the scale
- How much you spent on those shoes, that handbag
- The type of make-up you use
- The level of “whiteness” in your smile, or your skin tone for that matter
- The length, texture, or color of your hair.
You’ve been mis-lead into believing that beauty is based on what other’s SEE when they look at you. I beg to differ, and will shout down that voice inside your head if necessary to make sure you both get this next point. Real beauty can’t be bought, won’t fade, smudge, or decrease with time. It doesn’t wear out or have to be re-applied. It has wrinkles, callouses, stretch marks, scars and sometimes loses its hair. It comes in all shapes, sizes, and exists in many forms. It’s also FREE.
Change Your Perspective – Stop seeing YOUR beauty through SOMEONE else’s eyes.
Do you have a favorite piece of clothing? A sweater perhaps, or tee-shirt, or a comfy pair of shoes. People might tell you that item is “ugly”, “worn out”, “should not be seen in public.” But when you look at it, do you see the wrinkles, the faded colors; frayed hemline or small hole? Nope. You see something of beauty – you see each tear or rip as reminders of good and not so good times, of adventures well taken, risks that were rewarded in victories of survival – lessons learned. When you look upon that favorite object, you don’t see it as anything but beautiful; you love it for all it’s done for you, for how it made you feel when you held it, wore it, used it. Now, picture yourself naked again – no clothes, no make-up. That body has taken you through some amazing, miraculous, crazy, hurtful times. It’s going to take you through so many more. That face? It’s shown joy, sadness, excitement, surprise – it’s earned every pimple, blemish, wrinkle you can see. You are beautiful, the same as your favorite skirt, shirt, shoes, toy, etc.
Change Your Perspective – Show Yourself Some Love
Just as you treat your favorite item with care – you’re careful how you handle it, you wash it either by hand or in the delicate cycle, whatever. You handle it as if it were precious. Do the same with yourself. When you shower, use a soft wash cloth, or spend an extra minute or two gently exfoliating. Use a body wash scented with your favorite fragrance or, if you have sensitive skin, splurge as you can on soaps guaranteed NOT to irritate. When you put lotion on, say three positive things about each body part you rub. I like to tell my pieces “thank you” for doing what they do if I can’t think of a positive attribute at that time (for example, I struggle to find anything positive to say about how my thighs look, so instead, I tell them thank you for being strong and for carrying me through the day).
If you catch yourself saying or thinking something negative about how you look, follow it up with a “But, …” and then three positives. Example, “Good grief, I look fat in these jeans. BUT, this shirt looks wonderful on me, the color brings out the warmth in my complexion. My hair looks pretty good today as well.” See how that works?
YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL! Now tell that inner critic to sit down and shut-up! :-). Then read the rest of the Beauty of a Woman Blog Fest posts in peace.
18 thoughts on “Beauty of a Woman Blog Fest, 2014 – This one’s for YOU!”
I LOVED your comparison of a much loved item and our bodies. So very, very true. So many things become beautiful when looked at through the eyes of love. Great post!
:-). Thank you Kitt!
Yes that inner critic needs to be told where to go! Thank you for reminding us.
I love your line, “It has wrinkles, callouses, stretch marks, scars and sometimes loses its hair.” There’s a big difference between true beauty and what is thought to be society’s version of perfection. Such good ideas for showing yourself some love here. Thanks!
You’re welcome. I was thinking of myself when I that came to mind as I have all of those, lol. :-). Glad you enjoyed it.
Such an inspiring post! Thanks for telling it like it REALLY is, and for participating in the fest. 🙂 It’s amazing how far hearing the words, “YOU’RE BEAUTIFUL” can go.
Thank you! It was an honor to participate in such a wonderful Blog Fest. So many reminders and lessons on how to love who we are – you have an amazing collection of readers and Blog Fest participants for sure.
Wonderful post. I find it hard to pass a mirror when I’m clothed, let alone naked. Mathair’s much more comfortable with herself, and has always tried to instill those same principles with me, but it’s taking some time. I’m slowly but surely getting there, though I have to say that I’m tempted to try your exercise. It would be nice to jump out of my comfort zone, (and my clothes) LOL. It’s truly inspirational to be so comfortable with your own body and encourage other women to do so. Thanks so much for sharing this with us. Happy BOAW
Thank you! And I’m a work in progress. I still have trouble with honoring my body, and it’s taking the implementation of these exercises to help me get more comfortable so I recommend them. Would love to hear from you soon if you decide to try one on for size – I’m thinking of taking my self-love journey on the road so to speak so any feedback would be most appreciated and helpful. Hugs!
Ah, well said! You could be a sergeant for an Inner Beauty Boot Camp! Yes, ma’am!
Ohhh, I like that, Inner Beauty Boot Camp. Hmmmmm, I sense a business idea coming on :-). Thank you!
Wise words. We get so critical about our bodies, but they are there for us day in and out. And really, the harsh thoughts are from the outside, not within.. The so-called Inner Voice isn’t our own. It’s made up of the words and ideas of others that we’ve assimilated.
Let’s take in some new ideas. 😀
I have several inner voices, lol. I’ve learned to identify the one that’s most destructive and I regularly work to put it in it’s place. Thank you for stopping by :-).
The older I get the more I realize I just can’t waste time worrying what other people, and even my inner critic, think of me. I know i have flaws but they make me who I am, they make me interesting and lovable and beautiful in my own way. Your message should be plastered on billboards so younger women can change their perspective before they get old! Excellent post!
Thank you. I’m working toward that level of comfort in my skin :-).