Habits of Self-Loving Women

Monday, May 28, 2012 3:09 PM


May I be so bold as to say that this was a great hair day? Technically, it wasn't a hair day at all. The kids had just gone to bed and I was in the bathroom getting ready to wash my face and put my hair up for the night. My hair had been up in a twist out bun all day and for whatever reason, I felt like letting it down and connecting with my inner lioness. My night time rituals, when I am able to attend to them, always set me up for a good night's sleep and a productive morning. I don't get much privacy, so I love to carve out at least thirty minutes in the bathroom each night to be alone. How I choose to spend that time varies, but the important thing is that I cater to my mood and allow myself to recharge. 

Why You Need to Cultivate Self-Loving Habits.
When you don't make time for things that make you feel good, you're opening the door for needy, insecure behavior to become your method of operation. You can't wait for other people to make you feel good. I've learned this the hard way and I never want to go back to living in a world where everyone else's needs, wants and opinions matter more than my own. Praise and appreciation feel good, but they shouldn't be your motivation for what you do - especially not for things that you do for yourself.

Today, I'd like to share four habits that I've cultivated to stay grounded in my identity and show myself love. I encourage you to think about your own patterns and if you are giving yourself as much love and attention as you give to others. 

Keep some things private.
I make a conscious effort to be open and honest in my everyday interactions with people and certainly in my writing. I find that transparency is empowering for the most part. But I've learned that some thoughts and feelings are best kept private. Discretion is key. When you tell your secrets, you open yourself up to the opinions of others. So you must first determine if this exposure is wise and/or necessary and if so, be sure that you are emotionally ready for the possible criticism.

Disconnect and unplug.
You can't make yourself available to everyone day and night. I refuse to be a slave to my many communication devices. Everyone's threshold is different, so just make it your business to be aware of yours. Perhaps you should designate a certain amount of times a day to check email or return phone calls. Whatever you do, don't overextend yourself makiing it impossible for you to ever concentrate on one thing at a time. 

Pamper your hair and skin.
You've heard me talk about the importance of beauty routines before. In addition to my obvious love of all things hair, beauty and self-care have always been hobbies of mine. I used to feel down when my significant other didn't acknowledge my efforts as much I thought he should. I would even go so far as to seek that attention in other places. (I'm always throwing sneaky confessions into my posts, right?) But time and experience have taught me that I'm really the only audience that matters. Even if no one else notices or cares, I will always enjoy the process of pampering myself. 

Learn how to self-soothe.
When things aren't going your way and no one understands, it's easy to give in to self-pity and lose hope. I used to go to this dark place often - feeling down and upset and wanting someone else to make it better for me.  One of the most valuable things I've learned is how to pick myself up, dry my tears and stuff a sock in the mouth of that annoying inner critic that tells me that I suck and the world is coming to an end.  How you self-soothe is very intimate and personal, so I can't say what will work for you but prayer, meditation and positive self-talk will start you on the right path.

In the coming weeks, I'll share more habits of self-loving women and I'd love to include your ideas as well. Leave a comment or email me with your tips and I'll share them as part of the series. 

Girl Crush: Why I Like to Look At Women

Monday, May 21, 2012 10:12 AM

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I like to look at women almost as much as I like to look at men.

To be a woman who appreciates the beauty and sensuality of other women is very natural.  I love being a woman. I love being the soft next to the hard. The gentle that eases the rough. I can appreciate the sway of another woman's hips because I love the way mine sway when I walk, when I dance and when I seduce.

When I look at a woman and try to see what a man sees, it deepens my appreciation of my own femininity.

It's taken me a long time to be able to articulate that. 

Pay attention to the feminine qualities that are attractive to you.   Further develop those things in yourself.  Find inspiration in women whose energy moves you. I'm always intrigued by women who have some level of exquisite awkardness and yet still radiate confidence and magnetism.    Transparency. Self-awareness.  How she moves, dresses, talks and interacts with others.  These are the things I notice and admire.

Now take a moment to think about what qualities distinguish you. 

No matter what rejection or criticism you have been through, remember that you are a goddess and you deserve adoration - particularly your own.  Put the days of wanting to be attractive merely for external validation behind you.  It's time to be bold and comfortable in your own skin and learn what makes YOU glow from the inside out - not just to attract attention - but to exude positive energy and to live an authentic life. 

You can learn a lot from studying women who know how to channel their mojo.   So tell me, who inspires you with their feminity/intelligence/sex appeal/fabulosity?  Who are your girl crushes?


Find Me Here and Find Me There

Friday, May 11, 2012 11:35 AM

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What are you doing this weekend?!  Be sure to head over to the new Carol's Daughter site, Transitioning Movement, to check out the latest articles.  You can read my most recent contribution here, where I talk about learning to love your natural hair texture.


Bub

My oldest baby turned 10 a few weeks ago and I was all up in my feelings about it.  I wrote a post for PLPT to let it all out.  You can find it here.




This post was featured on Curly Nikki for Self-Concept Thursday.  I'm giving tips on how I like to think that I make motherhood look easy.  Ha!  As if.

Have an awesome weekend lovies!  I'm hoping to have much more of my writing outside of this blog to share with you in the near future.  I'm claiming it!!!!!


"She changed her can'ts into cans and her dreams into plans."


Simple Freedom: Be Natural

Thursday, May 10, 2012 10:01 AM

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Think about the harmony that would exist in the world if we were all intimately in touch with what naturally brings out our best while being confident enough to share it with the world.

If we all put these natural characteristics, talents, and gifts to use in this way, they would benefit us while also complimenting the harmony that we all wish to see in the world. Unfortunately, we get caught up in trying to define ourselves on someone else's terms. Am I natural enough? religious enough? successful enough? popular enough? What about asking ourselves this question:

Am I ME enough???

Spending all of our time seeking validation from each other slows us down. Instead of giving ourselves fully to our own process, we keep criticizing others and doubting ourselves. What's natural about that? If we could stop looking for one definition that suits us all (because it doesn't exist) and trust our own instincts, we'd all experience the actualization of our full potential through our own creativity and independence.

"What you are is good enough if you would only be it openly."
-Carl Rogers

Weekend Whimsy: Fashion Fades. Style Remains.

Sunday, May 6, 2012 12:00 PM

   


"Fashion can be bought;
style must be possessed.
Fashion guesses, so it can only bluff.
Style knows.
Fashion is impatient
and eventually passes away.
Style is steadfast and waits for every woman's awakening,
because authentic style
is born of Spirit."
 
-Sarah Ban Breathnach

The thought occured to me the other day that I'll be 35 at the end of this year.  I feel like it's taken me an extra long time to grow up and figure out which end is up.   I've made plenty of mistakes, done plenty of dirt, made some good decisions and indulged in plenty of impulsive behavior.  The most important thing I've learned from my life is that I'm happy with who I am - the pretty and the unpretty.   Well, I'm getting there with the unpretty.  Despite my doubts, I know that I am well on my way to living completely from my truest self. 

One of the best parts of knowing who you are and what you love about yourself is realizing what looks good on you and how you want to decorate yourself.  I wasn't born with covetable fashion sense.  I always wore what I saw everyone else wearing - whether it was flattering on me or not!
 
A couple years ago, I realized this and began decluttering my closet.  I wanted to have less, better quality clothes that feel comfortable, look feminine and capture the things I like most about myself. 

The following is an excerpt from PLPT where I shared my realizations about my personal style:

* My natural hair is my favorite and most authentic accessory.
* I care more about how my clothes make me feel than how they make me look.
* Piggy-backing on that second one, I believe that if I feeeel sexy then I will looook sexy. I don't try to do it the other way around anymore.
* Less is more. As I slowly declutter, I actually find that I have more to wear because all the stuff is out of the way and I can see what's really there and what's really me.

Have you thought about why you wear your hair the way you do, dress the way you do, follow fads the way you do? Make it a point to know what makes you feel beautiful, regardless of what the world says should make you feel beautiful.

Here are a few my current fixations:


Polka Dots







 Stripes


 High Waisted, Midi Length Pencil Skirts





Glowy Natural Makeup and blush, blush, blush!



nude d'orsay pumps (thanks to Kimmie for telling me what they are called!)


Retro Bathing Suits


All images via pinterest


What pretty things are currently on your wish list?  Are you digging on any of these same things?  Are we style sisters??!