Regardless of where you live, big city or rural community, or your occupation, CEO or housewife and mother, a positive self image, is essential to attaining personal happiness.
Throughout my career as a fashion and fitness model, I have met women from all walks of life and although their age, appearance and financial stature may have varied, there was always at least one common denominator. It is a pretty safe bet that if you talk to a woman about her appearance, she will tell you something about her body that she wished that she could change. When you stop to think about it, it is no wonder why!
Set your own standards by evaluating what is important to you. I wholeheartedly support and encourage women who strive to reach their full potential, but I urge them NOT to lose sight of who they really are along the way. Instead of struggling to be someone else’s idea of perfection, focus on your individual talents and strengths, working on improving those areas you would like to and can change.
You may have your mother’s thighs and your father’s nose, you may not be 5’10”, reed thin, or born with perfect hair and skin. Still, in no way should that translate to you seeing yourself as anything less than beautiful. It may sound cliché, but beauty truly is in the eyes of the beholder, and before others will begin to see you as beautiful, you must see yourself that way.
We have all met that one girl who acts totally and completely confident that we question our automatic (inaccurate) thoughts “she is not even that pretty and she is heavy; what does she have to be so confident about”? Guess what, either she has totally understood her strengths and focuses on those, or she is a great actress. The point is, we can all choose to behave with confidence. She has made a decision to love herself, focusing on what she can do, instead of what she lacks. You go girl!
As a model, you learn this pretty quickly. Rejection is something you must get used to, yet still manage to muster the confidence to continue going out on job calls. Rather than giving in to self-doubt, as so many often do, I choose to focus on what I to refer to as my “inner-beauty”. To help me stay centered, keep things in perspective and never lose sight of who I really am as a person, I practice yoga and meditation and I continue to work on becoming a more spiritual, loving and accepting person.
Staying Healthy and Feeling Vibrant
In addition to teaching me good social skills, an important lesson that my mother taught and showed me, was the importance of taking care of my body, especially my skin.
Your skin needs to be important to you now because as you age, the previous years of slacking on your skin-care will begin to show. That is why it is so important for good skin care to start today – so that tomorrow, you will have much healthier and more beautiful skin.
You need to make sure that every morning and evening you wash your face. Take all of your makeup off at night. In the evening, use a good eye cream and night time moisturizer. This will be different than the moisturizer you will wear during the day.
Food for Life: Before you get started, making any radical changes to your diet, it is important to consult your doctor. After all, we are all different, and we will all react differently to dietary changes.
Even when you are taking “natural” and herbal treatments, you risk conflicts and allergies. You can make great changes to your diet, just make sure that you consult your doctor when you do.
You always hear that drinking water is the best thing that you can do for yourself, and I have to tell you I could not agree more. I drink water throughout the day.
If you are lacking the vitamins your body requires, you are going to feel tired and worn-out, which could certainly lead to depression. Add a good multi-vitamin along with 1500 milligrams of calcium that contains magnesium to your diet and you are surely going to notice a difference.
Cut the Fast Food: If there is one thing in your diet that you absolutely do not need, it is fast food. Sure, it has its level of convenience, for when you are on the run, but the consequences far outweigh any of the benefits it might offer.
The trouble usually starts in school. They offer fast foods because they are cheap and popular among the students. However, this sets up bad eating habits for those kids, for the rest of their lives! This is why so many schools across the country, and around the world are re-thinking their cafeteria strategies. It just makes good sense in the long run.
Do yourself a favor and break the fast-food habit in your life. Bring your own lunches, and keep them interesting, so that the temptation is never there to go elsewhere.
Balanced Eating: Of course, if you do not know what to buy, it will be hard to build a healthy diet for yourself. The key is not necessarily what you eat – it is what is in what you eat. You need to eat moderate portions, and know what your body needs, and how much it is taking in.
There has been an awful lot of press about cutting carbohydrates, cutting fats, and other efforts to lose weight. When it comes to maintaining a healthy diet, though, the key is not cutting things out, it is eating the right things in the right amounts, frequency and portions.
Dietary fats are important for good health. This may sound a bit far-fetched, if not outright strange, but it is true. As far back as 1929, dietary fats were found to be “essential” in our diet. Balance is the key to making fats work for you and your body. There are two important considerations:
Consume a variety of good fats. These include unrefined oils, such as extra virgin olive and safflower and sesame. Fats from butter, meats, eggs and dairy are good as well, as long as they are part of a balanced diet.
Avoid hydrogenated (or partially hydrogenated) fats. These include margarine and many of the fats used to make breads and other products (read labels). Hydrogenated fats can disturb the metabolism of fats in the body. Also, fried or cooked fats should be avoided for similar reasons.
Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates take the form of sugars, oligosaccharides, starches and fibers. It is one of the three major macro-nutrients which supply the body with energy (fat and protein being the others).
Proteins: The building blocks of protein are amino-acids. When protein is eaten, your digestive system and processes break it down into amino-acids, which pass into the blood and then are carried throughout the body. Your cells can then select the amino-acids they need for the construction of new body tissue, anti-bodies, hormones, enzymes, and blood cells.
Protein is not one substance, but literally tens of thousands of different substances. The essential amino-acids must be consumed in the diet, because the body does not make them.
Remember that looking and feeling your best, is a combination that comes from feeling good BOTH on the inside AND taking the steps that will keep your physical body healthy and fit. If you do these things then you will also feel good about yourself on the outside.