Thursday, October 25, 2012

On Feeling Lovely

Some days go beyond bad hair days. I struggle with self esteem and self confidence. I count it as both my biggest weakness and deepest vulnerability.

But I've come to realize that while I might not be able to change the physical attributes about myself that bother me, I CAN do certain things to bring a sense of well being and confidence - both which lend themselves to making me feel lovely and comfortable in my own skin.

1. Cardio Exercise It's the answer I think no one really likes to hear, including myself, but really - there is no bad mood, no bad hair day, no "fat day," no depression that a good brisk, 45 minute walk can't help. There's a whole lot of scientific explanations about why exercise makes us feel happy, but for me - I feel better after exercising because I know I've done something really good for my body.  It's kind of hard to think negatively about your body when you're actively doing good things for it and treating it right.

2. Nail Polish I used to never wear it, but during my pregnancy with Silas, when nothing fit and my body was just out of control, painting my nails a pretty color made a HUGE difference in how I felt about myself. It gives me a boost, and makes me feel feminine. Try a color that is totally out of your comfort zone. Try something glittery. Try black! It's so much fun, and it really will make you feel lovely.

3. Wear What You Love I'm a housewife, with two littles. One particular little right now, is in that somewhat disgusting 6 month old stage. I get spit up on and drooled on all the time. It's tempting to wear pajamas or sweat pants and a tee shirt 7 days a week, but I know that makes me feel lousy. So I try to dress up even around the house. Who cares if it smells like baby puke before 10a.m. by the end of the day? When I wear what I feel pretty in, I feel happier and more confident during the day. (And luckily, baby puke and drool washes out really well in the laundry.)

4. Lipstick + Blush Two other cosmetics that I used to never use. The right shade of lipstick WILL make you feel lovely. Coral and orange-y shades are my happy colors. And a little dab of blush on the apples of your cheeks never fail to make you look youthful and vibrant - even when you feel anything but! (I recommend Benefit Benetint for blush. It looks so natural and is so easy to apply. Works as a light lip color too!)

5. Fish Oil + Probiotics Sometimes I am really convinced that I feel bad about myself because I don't feel good, period. I have found fish oil and probiotics to be the most beneficial and healthy supplements for me.

6. Make Quiet Time This one is so important to me, a major introvert, who gets exhausted around people - yes, even around my husband and children when it's non-stop and crazy. Time to get out of the house, get a cup of coffee and read a magazine makes me feel refreshed and rejuvenated. It reminds me that I'm not just a diaper changer and drool wiper (I KNOW there's much more to motherhood than that, but you other moms KNOW you have felt like this before!) Times like this are usually when my creative spark is re-lit. Don't feel guilty for needing some quiet time. Make it happen!

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