You may have noticed I’ve been missing from the past two Motivation Mondays. No? That’s OK. Yes? So sorry! But it’s all because I’m working on something bigger, better, and oh-so-wonderful. You may also remember that I started my very own, shiny, new company, Hurray Media. Well, I’ve been spending a lot of time building the business, my brand, my offerings, and staying true to my “why”. I’m having a swell time in Marie Forleo’s B-School, but I’m also a bit overwhelmed with so much to do. Starting your own company, working full time and taking a rigorous business course all at the same time is . . . a lot.
So I did what any self respecting, married, adult, business owner would do: I ran to my mommy. That’s right! I booked a last minute trip to Florida to visit my Mom and Step Dad in their new home, two of my brothers (I have five!), and my nieces and nephews. I left my husband to take care of the cat. I also had an agreement with my Mom and Step Dad that I would have time to work on my business. So between the home cooked meals, trips to the beach, and family time I WORKED my little business butt off.
And while Florida is famous for its beaches, I know it for its farm life! My oldest brother lives on dirt road in a beautiful home with a plot of land filled with a catfish pond, horses, chickens, goats and … BABY BUNNIES. Just in time for Easter wishes! Watch this short video I put together of my nieces, nephews and I exploring the country life. I don’t know who was more in wonder – these small kids or this city girl!
PS: Stay tuned for a cooking tutorial that I filmed with my Mom and learn how to make her award winning Apple Bread!
Wishing you and yours a happy spring, a wonderful Easter, and lots of love!
Hello to another Spring monday! The weather is CRAZY today, and my day has been crazy, too. It’s late, but it’s here. Time for Motivation Monday.
Today’s topic is a really hard one for me: when to ask for help. I’m a bit of a stubborn, do it all, perfectionist that has a hard time asking for help. It’s hard for a few reasons:
First, I don’t like asking for help because I fear that it makes me look weak or incapable.
Second, I fear that I’m giving away my power when I bring in someone else on a project or task. I’m a bit of a control freak.
And third, I feel guilty that I’m asking someone else to spend their energy working on something for me. Sound familiar? Then read on…
Learning how and when to ask for help is an ongoing lesson in my life. I’ve just shared why it’s difficult for me to do so, but that doesn’t mean I don’t do it. Remember with me a few of the moments when I did ask for a helping hand and was so glad that I did:
Recently I asked my friend Britney to help me clean and organize my cluttered office and living room area. I was embarrassed to ask her to help me for fear that she’d see old paperwork from 2005 and judge me when I a very real fear of letting it go. It was extremely kind of Britney to help me, but it never would have happened had I not let her into my home and then put my trust in her. I had offers for help from my husband and even another friend, but it took something inside of me and a very special trust in Britney to finally say YES to some help. Am I glad I accepted her help? You bet!
A few weeks ago I had a panic attack on the crowded 6 train in Manhattan. The train was far underground, bursting at the seams with people, very warm, and very stuck. We stayed stuck for about 15 minutes, which in “stuck on a crowded 6 train” time is FOREVER. I’m prone to panic attacks, but with a new yoga practice and a better handle on stress, I went from having two a week to once every two months, to rarely having any at all. Because of that, I did not have my low dose of medicine on hand, or water. I felt the panic rising. I started to take off my jacket, my scarf, I scrambled around in a tiny area looking for a breath of fresh air, wishing that I could get out of the locked doors. If you’ve ever been through a panic attack, you know what I’m talking about here. If you haven’t, please understand that all logic ceases to exist, and though I logically knew there was nothing to be afraid of, and no reason to panic, my body and mind went into survival mode.
Something that elevates my panic attacks is the fear that those around me will think that I’m crazy or overreacting – it’s a fear of being misunderstood. It totally multiplies my condition. I was terrified to reach out and tell someone what was going on, or even ask for a sip of water. But I have been through this before, and I knew what would happen if I didn’t…so I did it. I steered clear of the equally nervous man in front of me gnawing on his fingernails and, with big eyes and a trembling voice, asked the woman seated next to him, “Excuse me, do you have any water?” She hesitated for a second, then said “I do… but it’s mine that I drink out of.” In other words, “Yes, but not for you.” Embarrassed and feeling foolish, I did not tell her why I needed it and simply smiled and said “OK, I totally understand. Thank you.” and went back into fidgety squirrel mode. I tried to take deep breaths, I tried not to cry. Obviously, something was up, so she softly asked me “Are you ok?” and with what seemed like no other option, I admitted to her “I’m just having a little bit of a panic attack. I’m so sorry.” I don’t know what I was apologizing for, but it felt like the right thing to do. Instead of telling me to get over it, or to calm down, she looked me right in the eye and said “I totally get it. I get those sometimes. Would you like to sit down?” In the midst of what felt like a life crisis, she was suddenly a savoir. A seat! YES! I could sit down, and she understood. She got it. She knew I wasn’t crazy! Immediately I answered “Yes! Thank you so much!” And she lovingly stood up, gave me her seat, and asked “would you like someone to talk to?” What she was offering me was really help. She knew I needed it, and she magically offered it to me. As embarrassed and as frantic as I was, I was equally thankful. While we chatted, she cheerfully told me she was on her way to a job interview, and would probably be late. I told her I was so sorry to hear that and I hoped that they understood and she got the job. She brushed off her own worries, smiled, and stayed connected with me while I sat there, trying to keep it together. While this was happening, I realized how helpful and unselfish this person was being… and I didn’t even know her name. So I asked her for it. Vicky, she replied. I thanked Vicky many, many times.
When I finally got off of the train and made the agonizing crawl toward the sweet fresh air of Lexington Avenue, my body relaxed, my adrenaline finally dissipated, and I wept uncontrollably for the entire walk to work. I finally knew I was OK and my body reacted with a sweet, tearful release. In order to not look like a crazy person (again, still worried about this) walking down the street with tears streaming down my face, I called my husband. I just needed someone to be on the phone with me. When he didn’t pick up, I left a message that must have sounded completely ridiculous. It went something like this: “HELLO ::: sobbing ::: I just want you :::: sobbing ::: to know that ::: sobbing ::: I’m ok :: giant breath :: I’m just having a ::: sobbing ::: physical reaction to my ::: sobbing ::: panic attack I had ::: sobbing ::: on the train.” Realizing that this could only go on for a few blocks, I called up Britney again. Thank God she could take my call and again, didn’t judge me when I told her what had happened and how I just needed someone on the phone with me until I got to work. Britney saves the day, once again!
I don’t want to know what would have happened had I not reached out to Vicky for help. I also don’t want to know what would have happened had she not been kind enough to help me. Luckily, I don’t have to. I reached out for help and I got it.
Asking for help is not easy. I very much understand this. But in most cases, it’s worth the risk.
Make Genuine Requests, without Attachment. A “genuine” request can be accepted or declined, without any consequence. In other words, if we get really upset when someone says “no” to us, not only were we attached to the outcome, it probably wasn’t a real request to begin with (it was a demand). When we ask for what we want, without being attached to the response, we have more freedom to ask and ultimately our chances of getting what we want are greatly increased.
Be Easy To Support.
There are some specific things we can do to make it easier to support us. Such as:
Be open to the coaching and feedback of others
Thank people for their support
Let people do things to support us in their own unique way instead of micro-managing them (this one is often tough for me)
Allow people’s support when it is offered
Give Your Support to Others Generously.
When we put our attention on supporting other people, the universe has a way of returning the favor. It may or may not always come back to us from the people we help specifically, and that’s OK. We want to do our best not to “keep score,” as many of us often do, but instead to look for opportunities to genuinely help those around us. When we do this, we remind ourselves of the power of support and we experience it as the true “win-win” it is.
Today’s Motivation Monday topic was really hard for me to share, but I’m glad I did. I’ve been thinking about this topic quite a bit, and I’ve already put my own advice into action. While I’m taking Marie Forleo’s B-School course, I’ve met with some other entreperuers and asked for their advice, guidance, and opinions. It’s very against my nature to do so, but the results of my endeavors have been tremendous! I’m learning, I’m connecting, and I’m even able to help others. And all from asking: can you help me?
Can you think of an example in your life where you were too scared or too stubborn to ask for help? What would have been the worst thing that could have happened if you had asked for help? Maybe that you’d be embarrassed, or look foolish? What if you asking for help would actually get the results you craved and made you look like a go-getter? What is driving your request for help? Find someplace in your life where you can genuinely request someone’s help, or take it where it was offered. And don’t forget to look for opportunities where you can help someone else, too!
Welp, I had to change up my topic for today because I got a bit behind in my editorial schedule. First of all, I’m juggling quite a few things right now: my full time job at Linda’s, my budding media company, a major overhaul in our living room/office area, a serious delay on our new furniture, and an upcoming performance with the Astoria Symphonic Choir. Phew! Things have not been going very smoothly today, so instead of boo-hooing about it, I’ve decided to switch up my topic and give you a sweet little preview of the Mozart music that I’ll be furiously working on this week with the choir.
We’ll be singing Mozart’s Great Mass in C Minor, along with a few selections from Mendelssohn’s Elijah. It’s really gorgeous music… and pretty tricky stuff. At one point, the Mozart piece splits into two separate choirs with eight different lines of music being sung at the very same time. Confusing much? Yes! As we got closer to this week’s collaboration with a conduction conference, it became pretty clear that our choir (including myself) was not very prepared for the performance. While we’d been diligently plugging away and making great progress on the music, we simply hadn’t covered everything with the thoroughness that the pieces required. To put it plainly, we hadn’t practiced enough. So now we’re playing catch up, cramming in extra rehearsals and studying on our own. And I realized that had we each been studying on our own to begin with, little by little, practicing everyday (instead of just the Mondays that we meet as a group), we probably wouldn’t be in this spot.
This revelation seems obvious, but on a larger scale, it’s a pretty big deal. A little practice, every day, for a new habit, a diet, acts of kindness, meditation, music, a relationship – you name it!- will pay off big in the end. I mean, do you remember college? Cramming for tests rarely pays off, am I right? The material takes time to soak in, and the three hours of sleep and energy drinks takes quite the toll on your mind. Same goes for the rest of life. It’s hard to learn to suddenly be a good friend or a responsible coworker if you haven’t been practicing each day. It’s easier to be a loving partner and a more patient parent if you practice doing it more often.
So what can you put into practice today? What can you practice little, by little to “perfect” before long? I’m confident that our choir will be ready and sounding awesome on Sunday March 30th, but these past two weeks have been a lesson learned: practice makes perfect… or at least, progress!
OK I’ve got some big news: It’s Spring today!//You can buy this super fabric at Spoonflower!//
Today at 12:57 pm it will officially be Spring 2014. Here in NYC, it’s still pretty chilly. And while I’m not a snow hater (I mean, I grew up in Rochester, NY aka Snowtown, USA) I am ready for some warmer weather. Even more so, I’m ready for some change! Spring time is the best time for renovations and cleaning, in both your home and your life. That’s what I’m doing, at least. And because of that, I’ve got MORE big news!
First, I have officially signed the paperwork and put the wheels in motion to form Hurray Media, LLC! I’m BEYOND excited about this new adventure in my life. For now, I’m still holding my full time position as the Marketing Director (doing social media, PR, blogging, parties and editor fittings) and bra fitting expert with the fabulous Linda the Bra Lady while I start the work on forming my business. Stay tuned for a website, product and services offered, and more. I already have three great clients and I’ll be ready to take on more in the next few months for projects that include video production, social media, blogging/writing and hosting.
To get ready for my launch, I’m taking Marie Forleo’s B-School, meeting with lots of other entrepreneurs, and learning learning learning. It’s a lot of work, but I feel like I’m taking steps to create the life and job that I want… and THAT feels amazing. HURRAY!
I’ve designed the logo (above) and if you look closely, you’ll notice that I updated the blog header to match this brand new design theme! Do you like it? I’m testing it out now and if I like it, I’m going to change up the whole blog design to reflect this brand new fresh, fun, clean and cheerful design. I love changing things up, including the blog!
Because I’ll be working from my home office more often now, I’ve devoted a lot of time to cleaning and organizing the living room/office area of my apartment. My husband and I bought a brand new couch and loveseat for our tiny living room. Mainly because my (awesome, adorable, sweet, but elderly) cat peed on our current couch. Several times. Dang it, Bella Cat!!! So, new couch it is. But we also wanted to add a loveseat so that we could actually have a place for friends to park their butts when they come over. Mind you, our living room does not currently have space for these two things… so we have decided to get rid of two giant Ikea shelves and all of the “stuff” (that’s the polite way to say it) on them. We’ve been in this small apartment for over six years, and it’s overflowing with our stuff. So, we either move to a larger place (our landlord hasn’t raised our rent… ever. HELLO we are staying!) or we clean out a lot of our stuff and make room. So, here we go! We started just over a month ago, and I need to finish before Saturday, when the furniture is set to arrive.
Cleaning and organizing can be a really invigorating feeling. It can also be really terrifying. As a pack rat with hoarding tendencies. I’m not a full blown hoarder like the people on the show, but I do have an unnatural sentimental attachment to things and a really difficult time letting go of them. Even paperwork. I worry that I may need it, could reuse it, may want to give it to someone. The usual unhealthy attachment issues. So with the help of my dear friend Britney, I’ve unloaded piles and piles of old paperwork, unused office supplies, clothes, and more. It was terrifying. I won’t lie. But it does feel AMAZING now.
Word to the wise: Get an unbiased, helpful friend who will be firm but pleasant when it comes to purging old things. I did not trust myself to do it on my own because I would second guess every item and then feel overwhelmed and stop to take a “break” and never start again. As much as I love my husband, this was not a task for him to help me with. I was almost to the point of hiring a professional when Britney stepped in to help. She kept me on task, reassured me that it was ok to let it go, and did not judge me when I hesitated or stared at her with big eyes. She also acted as a bit of a cheerleader when I let go of major things. It felt great.
Anyone else ready to leave this “frozen” world and get back to warm weather?
I can’t tell you how happy I am that today is Spring and with the positive changes I’m making in my life! How about you? Is there something in your life – a room, a relationship, a job – that needs renovation or cleaning? Are you an entrepreneur – connect with me! I love learning from others!
Here’s your motivation for the week… GO GREEN! Here are a few ways to go green: Dress in green (I’m wearing green underwear and a green sweater today), go green for the environment (reduce, reuse, recycle – you know!), and/or try a green smoothie for your health! I have a Shaklee smoothie every morning for breakfast, but I decided to look up a few green smoothie ideas on Pinterest and went with this one today. Take a look at how things went below, and try it out yourself!
For my greens, I picked through a half and half Earthbound Organic mix and gathered up some spinach. Yum! I chose a yummy banana to add in for my fresh fruit. And I chose frozen strawberries.
For my optional protein, I used a scoop of my Shaklee Vanilla powder. Not exactly what they were talking about here, but I thought I’d go with it. I love adding cinnamon to my smoothies! Great flavor, plus cinnamon is proven to help regulate blood sugar levels which has great health benefits including healthy weight. I added ice and some coconut milk last. I probably added too much liquid, but coconut milk is DELICIOUS. I also love using unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk. Blend it up! I have a Cuisinart blender/food processor combo that I bought a year ago and I use it EVERY day. It’s pretty awesome, but I hear Vitamix and Ninja make great models.
The verdict: The smoothie was not green in color as I had hoped (I probably need to add more greens in for that) but it was soooo yummy! It made two full cups and I gobbled them down with my Shaklee Vitalizer Vitamins. YUM! What a healthy way to start the day! Hurray!
Bonus time: Looks like Shaklee is giving away a canister of one of my favorite shake flavors, Cafe Latte! Note that I do not work for Shaklee or get anything special for passing along this deal. I just really like this stuff and it keeps me healthy, full, and in shape. It’s also insanely yummy. Hurray!Double bonus: It’s my niece Jade’s 10th birthday today! I LOVE this little girl!
What are your plans for St. Patrick’s Day? Any fun plans? Have you ever tried a green smoothie? What are your favorite recipes? Leave a comment below or send me a tweet @hurraykimmay.
Super excited to share a new endeavor and opportunity to write that I’m taking on: a guest blog column on Lingerie Briefs called (what else?!) Hurray for Lingerie! I have always loved writing about lingerie (I’ve been doing it as Linda the Bra Lady on the blog Linda Unhooked for the past three years) and am using my 9+ years of experience in the field to shed some light on the goodness of lingerie. My first post, “My Top 5 Reasons I Say Hurray for Lingerie” is up and I’d love for you to read it over on the Lingerie Briefs blog.
It’s MONDAY! And it’s the first Monday since we sprang forward for Daylight Saving Time. Anyone else a little sleepy? Need a boost? Here it is!
Facebook. Whether you like it or loathe it, it has become a very big part of our world and a popular way to communicate. And while there can be a lot boasting and bashing on there, there are also a lot of great stories, tidbits of advice, and sincere joy. Not true for you? Looks like you need to do a Facebook Friends Audit. Go through your list of “friends” and find those who you aren’t really close with, who you do not admire, and whose Facebook feed is full of negativity, envy, trash talking, or (God forbid) only Candy Crush and Farmville invites. Don’t feel bad about unfriending. Most likely, they won’t notice, and your stream of friendly, uplifting, sincere posts will improve. This is something that I need to do. And this week as I was Spring Cleaning my apartment to get rid of clutter, I realized it’s totally time to declutter my Facebook feed. Putting it on my to-do list now!
Update 3/14/14: Looks like my post is supported by a study that shows emotions shared on Facebook are contagious! Read about it here.
Want to know what it’s like to have great stories in your Facebook feed? Here’s just two real Facebook posts that I found in the last few days from friends of mine on Facebook. I asked them if I could share their posts here on Hurray Kimmay, because these friends (and their posts) makes me say Hurray!
I’m proud to have these two women as friends and as Facebook friends. They are uplifting, funny, thoughtful, courageous and positive… and they fill my Facebook feed with the same. And my “real life” relationship with each of them is different. One I have known since I was seven, the other I have only recently met, and both live far away from me! These are just two of the wonderful stories I’ve found on Facebook recently (not trying to leave anyone out!), but there are so many more. And as a person who makes a living (and almost lives on) Facebook, I’m glad for these types of posts.
You don’t have to go through your entire Facebook friends list all at once. Let’s face it, some of us are soooooo popular that it’d be overwhelming to go through them all in one sitting – HA! But really, when you come across someone in your feed and you cringe a little, or bypass their status on purpose, or recognize their negativity, go ahead and unfriend them. As mean as that action sounds, it’s really the best thing you can do for yourself. Go ahead, declutter your Facebook feed, and say a prayer of thanks for your fabulous Facebook friends!
And don’t be afraid to LIKE a few Facebook pages that truly inspire you! I love reading posts in my feed from Marie Forleo, She Takes on the World, and (of course) Linda the Bra Lady (run by yours truly)! In fact, go give Hurray Kimmay a LIKE on Facebook! I share the posts from the blog, plus fun photos and links to all of those people, places, products and projects that make me say Hurray! Your LIKE on the page would really make my day
Have you ever had to unfriend a Facebook friend? How did you feel about it? Have any favorite Facebook pages that you like to follow? Share with me in the comments below!
Have you ever had one of those experiences that, even during the moment, you think: “this is unlike anything I’ve ever done and I will remember this for a long time”? Well a few months ago, my friend Limor and I had just such an experience. You may remember Limor from my interview with her and Chris Maddox about The Wild Woman project. She is one of the best people that I know – no joke. She is kind, encouraging, generous with her time, and really funny. She’s also paid me some of the most flattering compliments I’ve ever received when she sent me a laundry list of things she admires about me, one of which included a note on my style. Limor asked me to help her go shopping for a few new looks. I was thrilled! But while our schedules weren’t matching up, I also got a request to submit a friend for a “major magazine” makeover show. Limor popped into my mind immediately!
Limor and I met at an office and did an on camera interview detailing how we knew each other, and why I thought she deserved a makeover. They even asked us to come back for a callback. Little did we know that the “callback” was actually an ambush makeover, and the makeover would be (get this!) taking place in the elevator of a tall NYC building. Say what?! Limor and I were legitimately surprised. In fact, we were talking about a really serious topic when the stylist and makeup artist popped out of the elevator. Thank God they didn’t share the audio! HA!
Here’s a sneak peek of Limor’s Before and After photos…
Want to watch Limor get a fast paced, inside-an-elevator makeover and my reaction? Watch here!
In the end, Limor looked totally different, but she was still herself. She and I joked afterward about her new look, how quickly the stylist and makeup artist stripped her down and changed her outfit, and how crazy our day was! But in between our gabbing about fashion and style, Limor and I chatted about relationships, our goals in life, and more. During a crazy, all-about-her day, Limor was (and is) still the friend that cares about what’s going on with her friends. And that, my dears, is what really makes Limor beautiful.
What did you think of the tips in the video? (I really liked the hairspray on a toothbrush trick to slick back flyaways!) Anyone that you know who is beautiful on the inside and out? Tell me in the comments below what makes YOU say “hurray!” or send me a tweet @hurraykimmay.
WOW! It’s Monday, and I’m a little sleepy because I was up late watching the Oscars. I’m a movie lover, an actress myself, and a fashion enthusiast. I mean – this is my night.
There was so much to entertain us when it comes to the gorgeous gowns and hunky actors, Ellen Degeneres ordering and passing out pizza for the A-Listers, and learning about short and foreign language films I hadn’t heard of before. But what really got me were the acceptance speeches. On a scale of one to bawling-my-eyes-out there were some pretty good speeches last night. Not surprisingly and possibly very cliche, the Best Supporting Actor (Jared Leto), Best Supporting Actress (Lupita Nyong’o) , Best Actor (Matthew McConaughey)and Best Actress (Cate Blanchett) speeches were my favorite. Here are a few Pinnable, Printable and Sharable quotes from the speeches last night:
New comer and Best Supporting Actress winner Lupita Nyong’o was a darling, grateful, cheerful doll. She actually went to Yale Drama with a friend of mine, who was spotted with her at a Knicks game and was rumored to be her beau… not true, but hilarious, and proof that this big world is pretty small. 12 Years a Slave was a great movie… and very hard to watch. I had to leave the room a few times, I’m not ashamed to admit. But it was truthful, well done, and it probably deserved Best Picture prize that it won. Here’s a full transcript of her speech:
Thank you to the Academy for this incredible recognition. It doesn’t escape me for one moment that so much joy in my life is thanks to so much pain in someone else’s. And so I want to salute the spirit of Patsey for her guidance. And for Solomon, thank you for telling her story and your own.
Steve McQueen, you charge everything you fashion with a breath of your own spirit. Thank you so much for putting me in this position, it’s been the joy of my life. [Tears, applause.] I’m certain that the dead are standing about you and watching and they are grateful and so am I.
Chiwetel, thank you for your fearlessness and how deeply you went into Solomon, telling Solomon’s story. Michael Fassbender, thank you so much. You were my rock. Alfre and Sarah, it was a thrill to work with you. Joe Walker, the invisible performer in the editing room, thank you. Sean Bobbitt, Kalaadevi, Adruitha, Patty Norris, thank you, thank you, thank you — I could not be here without your work.
I want to thank my family, for your training [laughs] and the Yale School of Drama as well, for your training. My friends the Wilsons, this one’s for you. My brother Junior sitting by my side, thank you so much, you’re my best friend and then my other best friend, my chosen family.
When I look down at this golden statue, may it remind me and every little child that no matter where you’re from, your dreams are valid. Thank you. (via Washington Post)
Matthew McConaughey thanked God, his family, and his own personal hero: himself in ten years. Strange, but touching. It also includes a shout out to one of his first (if not his first) movie roles in the cult classic (and personal favorite) Dazed and Confused. Boy is he having a great year, and has he come a long way. If you haven’t seen him in Dallas Buyers Club, go see it. Immediately. Alright, alright, alright.
Speaking of Dallas Buyer’s Club, Jared Leto has really turned into quite the actor! I mean, we all remember his My So Called Life days, but he said he hasn’t done a film in six years… what a way to come back to the movies. His role as Rayon was transformative, tender, and sublime. His speech, the first of the night, set the bar pretty high. He packed in a lot of gratitude when he thanked his Mom, his brother, his business people, and he even showed support for those with AIDS, those who are persecuted because of who they love, and those struggling with unrest in Venezuela and the Ukraine. So much family and world love! An all around uplifting speech that got my tears flowing.
Cate Blanchett gave a shout out to women! She says “Thank you to the audience that went to see [Blue Jasmine] and perhaps to the people in the industry who are still foolishly clinging to the idea that female films with women at the center are niche experiences. They are not. Audiences want to see them and, in fact, they earn money.” And added, to drive home this point: “The world is round, people!”
The Oscars remind me that hard work pays off, that dreams do come true, and that celebrity status can be used for good.
What were your favorite speeches of the night? Did you enjoy the red carpet? Did you like Ellen as a host? Leave a comment below or send me a tweet @hurraykimmay!
As a devoted Today Show watcher (I mean, it’s on for four hours, how can I miss it?), I’m really excited for their body image emphasis this morning. The anchors went makeup free (men and women) for a portion of the show this morning. While that takes some guts, it was more impressive to hear their hangups and the ways that they accepted their “flaws” as a part of who they are. In the past, Today Show contributor Bobbie Thomas shone when she revealed herself sitting in a pair of Spanx and a bra (at 1:04) in her The Power of Style preview…
Bobbie’s point was that no one’e body is perfect, and dressing with clothes that suit YOU will help you feel your very best. Here’s some great advice from Minnie Driver during her appearance on The Today Show. Matt Lauer asked for her to share her thoughts for people who may be tempted to compare themselves to rail thin models in the media: “You have to get comfortable with who you are. . . the only thing you ever have to do is answer to yourself“.
Here’s a truth: I didn’t wear shorts for almost 7 years. That’s right. Besides gym shorts and my volleyball uniform, I shied away from shorts. I hated my thighs during middle school and high school. With stretch marks from a growth spurt at age 10, pale skin, and cellulite, I kept my legs hidden under loose skirts or long pants. Also, as a 5′ 7″ high schooler, I felt like a giant compared to my pretty, petite friends. At one point I weighed only 115 lbs but I felt big, fat, and ugly. Looking back on photos of me at the time, I was a skinny stick with a seemingly vibrant and vivacious attitude… and a pretty ugly self image. Now, with 10+ years and 20+ pounds, I feel so much more confident in who I am and what I’m about. So what changed? My body didn’t… but I did.
I realized that every woman has body hang ups, even those that looked beautiful in my eyes. And I realized that many people thought I was beautiful – and meant it – and couldn’t believe that I had hang ups. They loved my long legs and wanted my thin frame. It also helped that I started working as a bra fitter and saw naked women all day long. Partially because it helped me realize that the human body is amazing, and each one is unique… and because I saw what age did to it. As a 19, almost 20 year old at the time, I was taking my youthful, healthy body for granted. So I ditched the long pants and started sporting (tasteful) shorts and owned my flaws. This is how I learned that confidence is the best key to looking your best.
To prove my point, here is the gorgeous curvy model Asia Monet and I at the Curve Lingerie Expo. Two very different shapes, sizes, and even skin tones… and two very confident, pretty ladies (if I don’t say so myself!) I’ve been a champion for women’s body image for years now. In fact, I started Tuesday Boobsday and Thursday Curvesday on the Linda the Bra Lady Facebook and Pinterest pages to help foster a community of love, joy and self respect when it comes to body image. Here are a few of the sassy Pins on the Linda’s Thursday Curvesday Pinterest board. Hop over there any time you need a body image pick-me-up!
Here is an exert from a blog post that I wrote for the curvy blog HourGlassy.com on being a 32D bra size, and how I feel about my body. You can also read the entire blog post here.
And most recently, I shared my views on the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition, and the skimpy bathing suits on the models. To read the entire post, visit the Linda’s Blog post:
As a bra fitter and swimsuit stylist for over 9 years now, I’ve garnered experience with cup sized swimwear at Linda’s, expensive suits at high end retailers on 5th Avenue, and on Madison Ave with some of the sexiest lingerie and swimwear brands in the business. I get it: sex sells. But what is sexy? For the ladies in the Sports Illustrated magazine it looks like less is more: skimpy, zero coverage styles with little left to the imagination. In the fantasy world of magazines and fashion shoots, that may work. But in real life, the women that I help shop for bras and swimsuits and I agree: a great fit always helps you look and feel your very best. I always tell women that wearing a bathing suit is the closest that most of us will come to wearing lingerie in public. It can be scary or intimidating. There’s a lot of skin showing and lots of flaws to consider. None of us are flawless (especially without Photoshop), but we are all beautiful.
So what I’ve learned, really, is to love what you’ve got and stop trying to be someone or something else. You are you, and that’s pretty great. Curvy, skinny, tall, thick, thin … it doesn’t matter. Our bodies are amazing works of art and science, and we’re blessed to have them. Say a little prayer of thanks for YOUR body today, be kind to it, feed and nourish it well, dress it up in lovely things, and give it some love
How do you celebrate your body? Send me a tweet or write a comment below!