“We always want what we don’t have”. Heard that one before? We long for curly hair not straight, olive skin not fair. Longer legs, less tummy, bigger breasts. The list can go on. And it does. I’ve spent my life trying to squeeze into pencil skirts, when my body shape is suited to A-lines. Yes I can attempt pencils when I am almost sickly skinny after a relationship breakdown or intensive marathon training, but is this healthy, sustainable or even attractive? No.
What about the normal process of ageing body change? This is a natural process, however we resist it and fight it until we become so down on ourselves that the person who used to enjoy getting dressed in the morning now loathes it. We look desperately in our wardrobe and realise that the clothes we used to wear proudly, are outdated, unflattering and unattractive.
Comparing ourselves to others, to an unrealistic body shape and a ‘you’ 10 years ago is a debilitating mindset. We feel deflated, defeated and disappointed. We mask this perceived failure by purchasing clothes that reflect the body we want. We are attracted to clothes that don’t suit us. When reality hits, we painfully see what looks good on the model in the magazine, does not look good on us.
As soon as we accept our body for what it is, we will free ourselves from this unhelpful mentality. Easily said then done isn’t it?
However, something very simple that has helped myself and my client’s, is to call our problem area “features”. “My tummy feature”, “my thigh feature”, “my chest feature”. This immediate language switch from negative to positive creates a path of acceptance for what is inherently one of the many special parts of each of us.
These “defects” are now unique features to embrace, explore and enjoy through careful, creative and collaborative styling.
Changing our mindset about our features means changing our mindset about ourselves.