Tag Archives: body image

Family Court: Judgments at Reunion Time

The word “family”gets eyes rolling and pushes some people’s hot buttons of insecurity or far more negative emotions. When it comes to the Big Family Reunion, maybe to attain acceptance, it’s time to switch to zippers.    — BadWitch

Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW — I have a family reunion (huge, people fly in from around the country and we have committees to organize it) coming up and I’m finding I’m vainer for this thing than my high school reunion! I mean, hair, Botox, liposuction vain. What accounts for this nuttiness for family members who should love me no matter what?  — Relatively Vain

==

Dear Relatively Vain,

Well you can pick your friends, but you can’t pick your family. No one can bring out your insecurities with off-handed discussions about your complexion, your butt or the intimate sundries of your life like family. Comments friends, coworkers and acquaintances would never dare utter (with you in the room) are free fodder for full family discussion because on some level you share DNA.

I’m sure, somewhere there are families who are not doing this to each other. But, I come from a traditional African-American family where only the deep dark family secrets are off the table. If it’s your physicality—weight gained or lost, hair cut or grown—doctor’s notes, test results, or dating status, is all in-bounds. This alone is enough to make you slimfast, bodyshape, and nip/tuck to avoid scrutiny. Though you should realize, this is your family, those nip/tucks, etc. are still open for discussion.

Remember family is family. If you are feeling insecure, remember that’s your stuff. They may be obnoxious. They may pry and discuss your body like a newly purchased side of beef, but they love you. They care and they will always be there for you—whether you Botox before or not. But, please realize, if you Botox, they will know—and talk about it. If you get breast implants, butt implants, rhinoplasty or anything else that changes the outcome of the genetic materials you share—they will talk about it—and probably not nicely .

So, what’s the answer. Know that it is not just you. Truly nutty, loving families come in all shapes and sizes. Your family loves you, no matter if or how they are able to show it. The fact that everyone spends the time and money to come together for the reunion—proves it. Be compassionate about your families over-sharing. Do not judge them for it or choose to feel judged. Instead, decide this is one way that your family shares the big stuff and the minutia of family because they care enough to want to know it all. Choose to be you. Be comfortable and accept that family is as family does. Choose to accept yourself, your family, your genes and the scrutiny that comes with it. U B U. Get your hair done. Make sure you have a nice outfit and clean underwear (in case of accident) and go in there as yourself. That’s all they want to see, anyway.

Good luck,

GoodWitch

==

Dear Relatively Vain,

Confession! I’m that weirdo for whom the word “family” has a strongly positive association — including our shared delusion that we’re all smokin’ hot. So…

You can love, hate, or in-between them, but while family are the people most of us wouldn’t normally choose as our friends, they are our first identifiers/labelers, and perspective/values givers to How the World Really Is. This deep seeded imprinting is hard but not impossible to overcome, should you decide you’re ready to drop your story (e.g., I’m fat; will never amount to anything; or tall people are richer, etc.) or otherwise “rewrite your script.”

Generally, I don’t mind enhancements and procedures if you’re truly doing them for you or your health. I mind (for you) that you seem to have undergone a lot of time, expense and pain for other peoples’ (shared DNA or not) approval. Go stand in the mirror naked and stare and stare at your face and body. If you’re really brave, take some pictures (or have a friend do it); you can always Delete them later. Note what you like and dislike, hate and love about whichever parts pull and keep your eyes staring. Finally, to the parts you most dislike or even hate, say out loud to them, “Thank you for helping me see the world,” or “Digesting the nutrients that give me energy,” or “Giving me a portable, comfortable seat to sit on,” etc. You get the idea. Say out loud your praise and gratitude statements to these parts — touch or hold them as you speak — at least once a day, preferably naked in the shower or as you’re dressing for your day. [Acceptance doesn’t mean throwing up you hands and “settling” for your crappy parts, oh well. You can choose to actively make changes/ improvements/ enhancements to these parts while you praise and thank for what they do for you in their perfection today. This acceptance of responsibility helps us close the circle of self-acceptance.]

You can always buy New & Improved! cheekbones and hair, but inside out, you will still reflect the worst bits and pieces your family passed along, if you don’t make the true changes you deem necessary to live that more authentically beautiful version of You.

We are family,

BadWitch

==

Image, Frida Kahlo’s Family Tree

Juicy Relationship Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your FREE brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009 ManifestGroup. No materials may be used without expressed written permission.

Working Out Having to Work Out

Whether genetically talented, or always need to work out, health maintenance is the real thing. The key to healthier, happier and hotter you — living with wellness all your days.   — BadWitch

Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW — I hate working out but now that I’m getting older, skinny flab probably looks worse than a few pounds overweight. Any suggestions?  — Former Coaster

==

Dear Former Coaster,

HA!, I’m laughing with you not at you. I Get it, cream puff. I was always naturally athletic, consumed whole medium pizzas by myself at lunch through college and still had a BMI of 13%…when I didn’t work out. No need to hate – we all are naturally talented at something, people. Whether we’re innately talented with lifelong 20-20 vision, or brilliant at height or strength, when these natural unearned talents shift – we can feel emotions from denial to anger to grief. I’m solidly empathizing with this general plight we call getting older. Grrr.

But as we’re lucky for that opportunity, we owe a debt of responsibility to see this issue is about embracing (again!, an emerging theme from you all this month) change. The first step to making changes successfully is to accept and embrace the change(s) that are spurring the need for updating and introducing newer ways of being/doing things, or solutions. This is your body now. Today. Not how it was in the past.

Just start. Reset your body with a detox to ready/prime it better for…your healthier diet (and “diet” doesn’t mean “weight loss” rather what we eat daily). Then Just Start!, by eating more veggies or getting the right green super foods down your gullet daily. For your heart, lower the bad carbs and fats, and up the good ones. Take Omegas 3-6-9 (fish, flax, borage oils) and raise your good cholesterol while lowering your LDL. Now I’m not going to lecture you any more about health benes you already know about — mamacita, the more toned you are, the hotter you will look and feel, and nothing builds more confidence than a healthy body of any natural size! Help your body help you. Portion control: Easy peasy. I like using the Rule of the Fist (which this lifelong wellness practioner made up), which is to say that our fists reflect roughly the size of our hearts (compare yours to different size friends’ to sharpen that picture for yourselves) and this is a very good portion of food (each: starch, protein, veggies, etc.) to maintain a healthy balance of intake to exertion. Move it or lose it! Keep your body moving. Especially in our predominantly sedentary workplaces and car commutes, it’s all the more important to keep circulation flowing, oxygenation to the muscles and organs feeding and detoxing, and your metabolism up naturally higher, at rest. Park further away, power walk everywhere, tippy-toes calf-sculpt, squat while doing chores — don’t make it hard to routinely keep your body moving, by integrating it into your day’s normal activities. Bicep curl some soup cans because building muscle density raises metabolism, and (ladies!) helps build bone density. Hey, if this lucky-fast metabolism Cali kid could get past her own self-delusions of never-ceasing Super Heroine-ism, anyone can.

‘To keep the body in good health is a duty, for otherwise we shall not be able to trim the lamp of wisdom, and keep our mind strong and clear.’ –Buddha

(Protein) Shake your booty,

BadWitch

==

Dear Former Coaster,

I know your pain! I, too, hate to work out, but I have found some interesting ways to get some exercise without resorting to stomach crunches and squats.

First, get active in daily life. I have to tell you, parking your car further from the door to force yourself to walk further, actually makes a difference over time. Running around the playground with your kids—maybe a game of tag and you are it—will make you sweat, while you laugh. I pick my kids up regularly, do dance parties around the house and make myself do a little jig while cleaning the house. You’d be surprised the work out you can get from vacuuming if you get your groove on at the same time!

My favorite physical activities are all about having fun. I love to swing—the playground type. So, I used to stop in at the playground to get my swing on. Now, I have bought an Om Gym, which allows me to swing in the privacy of my own home, while watching TV. I swing upside down and get a good stomach work out in. Make physical activity part of who you are in daily life and your body will respond.

Take a walk. Go for a bike ride. Put more physical activity behind your love-making. You’d be surprised what a great stomach and leg work out it can be if you do it right—not to mention how much fun you’ll have! Take a walk and smell the flowers along the way or window shop. Move your body doing the things you enjoy and you’ll get your exercise on without doing the physical activities you hate.

In the end, I may not be a size 2, but I am healthy, shapely and enjoy the ways I incorporate physical activity in my life. That’s right, there is a hot body waiting for you and no gym required.

Get Moving and Have Fun,

GoodWitch

==

Juicy Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your FREE brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009 ManifestGroup. No materials may be used without expressed written permission.

Revenue Enhancement, Cosmetic Surgery?

Some people would give their eye-teeth, but this reader wants to get a new nose and teeth.  So while it’s a guaranteed revenue booster — for his plastic surgeon and dentist! — will these cosmetic tweaks improve his own sales career’s bottom line?

— BadWitch

PS See you back here one day earlier on Wednesday.


Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW — Should I get a nose job and veneers to improve my career? I’m in sales. I do pretty well, but could always do better. — Bottom Line

==

Dear Bottom Line,

The ROI on improved teeth and nose work, eh!, not as easily definable a career investment like an MBA/masters, or a computer, but it could be considered a tool of your trade and you always want the sharpest tools in your belt. Having said that, I have no idea if you’re actually any good at being, nor what “doing pretty well” as a sales person means to you. Tools are only as good as the hands they’re in. If nothing else, there’s the potential tax write-off benefit; consult with the right tax professional for you.

A smile is worth a million bucks. Give or take the dollar’s fluctuation, in this economy. No matter whether your smile is your fortune, or just your personal calling card to the world, your smile usually is the barometer of your spirit and how you really feel about yourself. [And for any shy or less confident readers: Fake it till you make it includes smiling and this retrains your thoughts and eventually your brain. Smile your way to more confidence.] So if getting veneers makes you feel more genuinely confident about your choppers, then get them. As for your schnoz, unless it’s a physical impediment (like the most commonly cited deviated septum), or it really, truly keeps you from living your best life — don’t silhouette profile yourself (as lesser than).

I’m not against cosmetic surgery across the board so if you’re concerned about business and revenue, talk to your sales manager and CPA for their take on your individual situation. But if this is a question about how you feel about yourself, then I say work on building your actual self-esteem (and this may include some healthy and real confidence that comes from knowing your smile winningly conveys the real you inside). Otherwise a “quick” fix that comes with post-op black eyes and held together with glue, could just end up being a superficial (and possibly shifting) thing, at best.

First be real…with yourself,

BadWitch

==

Dear Bottom Line,

Why do you think you have to alter you features to be successful? Nose jobs and veneers don’t always improve people’s looks. Case and point: Hilary Duff.

You want to make more money and a better impression on future clients? Self-esteem is the best idea. Confidence is incredibly attractive. I know I’ve said it before, but the truth never changes. We all know the woman or guy who is not necessarily attractive, but has the confidence and charisma to make everyone react like they are cover models. Confidence is beautiful and works better than rhinoplasty in attracting new clients. Need another example, how about Clive Owen. OK looking with skin issues, but considered one of the sexiest man alive because he has confidence and talent out of control. Daniel Craig, another Hollywood Heart throbs, has never let his broken nose slow down his success.

You want success in sales? Start with brain training techniques and affirmations that program you for success. Just as athletes visualize themselves making the shot again and again to program their body memory to make the shot., you need to visualize yourself selling. See yourself bantering with clients easily. See people saying yes to you. See yourself succeeding. Train your body memory to be at ease, confident and selling successfully. Then put on an outfit that makes you feel confident and go work it.

Use that extra cash on more affective marketing—social network and/or traditional. Make sure people know that you are the one to buy that product from. Remember, you can sell yourself to make money, but in the end, you will have crippled your spirit. Frankly, it’s not worth the cost.

Good luck,

GoodWitch

==

Juicy Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your FREE brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009 ManifestGroup. No materials may be used without expressed written permission.

You’re Too Sexy for Your Age…Right!, Said Fred

miley.cyrus.redcarpet Milley_Cyrus

With incessant technology, media image overload and growing up too early against extended longevity comes a new coming of age question: how do I dress in style and age appropriately? Peer pressure and unrealistic, glammed up media body images flashing 24/7 can confuse even an adult mind as to what’s hot and what’s not – how’s a teenager to know what’s too sexy too young? — BadWitch

Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW — Sup! I have this cute amazing !!!new !!! dress I love and I wore it to school. Then I come home and my mother and her gfs are chillan. Her friend goes, “I would get killed if I wore that to school at 16!” but it’s totally in style. WTF?!!!   — Hot & Sweet Chica

==

Dear Sweet Chica,

Well, there are a couple of seemingly opposite statements I need to make. The first is that style and appropriateness are two different things. The second is, why do parents forget that we too wanted to look like we were 22 when we were 16. This is not new or news. This is the age old question of what style is the appropriate style when you’re in between. (Think Britney, “Not a girl, not yet a woman.”

I understand that teenagers tend to wear what looks like club wear to school, because school is the biggest outlet for expressing you and your style—and hotness at school can determine social status. I get the whole pic—I too was a teenager once. However, despite the skin tight mini-dresses worn by 90210 “teens,” this is not actually the most appropriate attire for school. Once in a while, pulling out the SUPER HOT wear makes sense. People take notice. Save the good stuff for the parties. The one thing you don’t want to get labeled is hot to trot—and guys base those labels on how you look as much, if not more than what you do.

That being said, you’re 16! Of course, you want to look hot. Even Miley Cyrus is coming under fire for being a normal 16 year old who wants to look and act older than she is. Because older is cooler at 16! I would say, just be sure that in your race to look hot, you don’t present yourself as a girl who thinks her looks are her worth. Looks make up a VERY small part of your overall worth as a human being. Looking sexy does not define who you are or how sexy you are. For instance, Angelina Jolie is usually seen in leather and jeans. She is incredibly sexy, pretty much an icon of sexy. She does not wear super short dresses. People go nuts when she wears strapless even though the dress is super full and long. Why? Because SHE is the sexy beast they all want to know and get next to. Because she is undeniably herself, loves herself and, more importantly, respects herself FIRST. That confidence is the ultimate sexy, beyond short dresses or skin tight wear.

So that is my long winded way of saying, you be you. Dress in what makes YOU feel comfortable. Dress for you—not for the intended effect on others. Go ahead and work the sexy look from time to time, but remember, sexy is from the inside out. Beyond style, nothing says sexy like a self-loving, expressive, confident woman. And that looks great on any age!

GoodWitch

==

Dear Hot & Sweet Chica,

OMG we are soo fashion sistahs from another designer mama!! Long ago, in a lingerie department far, far away, I was solo shopping for basic bras when this dried up old lady quite loudly said to her wise glowing friend who kept trying to shush her, “I would never have been allowed to wear something like that when I was 16!” Hey, Crumble Cake Spice, I’m 21. I’m just one of those objects that looks sweeter in the Don’t Project Your (Bam!) Issues on Me mirror, lady.

I don’t know if you or your mom should be more upset here. After all you’re not 21, it’s her house and her final word you really must respect, so follow her rules and…roll up your skirts half as high as your instinct to, Georgia O’Keefe – I’m sayin’ being wise not just smart is always in style, Ms. Thang. Having said that, if I were she, that concerned but big-mouth girlfriend would’ve gotten an earful on not telling me how to parent. But since you asked for our opinion, my first concern for all daughters out there is on how her early, blossoming psycho-emotional and self-worth development look, because if they’re kapow! big and bouncy then I’m likely to have half as much to worry about (or at least “tweak” – what with Photoshopped misleading media images and peer pressure often working against an impressionable psyche’s best interest) around her dressing in style but age-appropriately for her brainy, slammin’ body (that I also want her to learn to healthily love, embrace and (gulp!) enjoy on her own terms, no one else’s).

And, girl yes I know !!!NEW!!! is always fun…but then it becomes neither amazingly quickly. It’s eternal good taste to develop (start now, take years) a true personal style that reflects and expresses your happiness and ease in your own skin-purpose-joy. My effin brilliant mom advised teenage-BadWitch to do “all that over-the-top fashion crap now when you’re young and no one will think you’re crazy, as opposed to when you’re older and they think you’re pathetic” — or inappropriately projecting all snappy dragon lady style – so of course I always represented my self…just like we all do, darlin’.

Put the long “U” in sexy styling,

BW

==

Images, VH1 red carpet; Annie Lebovitz Vanity Fair shoot

Juicy Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your FREE brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009 ManifestGroup. No materials may be used without expressed written permission.


Share

Phat Girls: Skinny, Overweight & In-between

sizezeroDM_468x455Can One Size ever Fit All, and if not, why is our society so thin-centric? If More is Better in money, smarts and success, why isn’t more to love mo’ bettah?? — BadWitch

Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…

Dear GWBW — I am size 14 and work in the Junior’s department. I’m on commission and I realize I’m not making as much as some of the “skinny girls” in the department. When I talked to my co-worker about changing my shift, she suggested I lose some weight. WTF? Do I have to lose weight to be successful? — A Queen Like Latifah

==

Dear Queenie,

When “success” is defined by ‘Never too rich, never too thin’-thinking, that’s the problem. Not your weight (but whether girls or girlz, wellness first). This sort of thinking is fraught with judgments of what’s supposedly universally good and bad, and extremely self-limiting for those who buy into it. And none of that even touches on the fact that at size 14, you are the average American woman’s size! — and that Junior Plus starts at size 16. Can she say Miss Informed a little louder?

You sweet juicy Pear, I like how you functionally and quickly identified the most likely probability, and came to a solution right away. Big ups on the maturity and self-responsibility you exhibit. Lean on your instincts to figure out a workaround that works for you — and (aside from putting your health and wellness first) don’t buy into her misguided smugness, or fear, or well-intended advice. The only thing you did “wrong” here was to talk to a Banana who just doesn’t seem to appreciate your brilliance. While we can’t immediately change the problem inherent in the fashion industry behind Junior departments (odd sizes from 0-19) of America, we can all try to become more constantly open-eyed and -mind aware of the insidious nature of media images on the development and (self-esteem) stunting of young girls and women, and the often resulting cock-eyed self-images, and societal prejudice they produce.

Media isn’t going to go away – nor would this media junkie, ever want it to! One way I consistently personally recommend to avoid becoming a media zombie, is to train ourselves and children to become critical thinkers. This vital skill is woefully and ironically underrepresented in our schools, and long before all the current education systems to-the-bone budget cuts. Critical thinking saves!, and is certainly not for university students and eggheads only but should be taught as young a possible as a way to ascend the chaos.

You go on with your gorgeous, smart, thinking and self-believing identity, Queen Pear! Admire all your full glory nakedness in a full-length mirror and hug and thank your curves, sweetie. There’s so much of you to love on so many levels, right? It’s your job to keep on showing your real self (including your insecurities as you work on losing the weight of those) to the world — not an option to hide any aspect of your radiant self from the world.

Self-love & wellness,

BW, a Strawberry

==

Dear Queen,

No, girl, you do not have to be some Skinny Minny to get ahead! Just like Queen Latifah has put forward a new definition of sexy, so can you. Carry yourself with confidence that doesn’t wane. You’re not overweight. You’re Phat!

Now, that said, if you feel your weight may be posing health risks, like increasing likelihood of diabetes or slowing you down because you can’t catch your breath when walking up a flight of stairs, that’s not sexy. Those may be the signs to drop a few pounds—for you. If, however, you’ve got Queen Latifah’s curves and are styling and carrying yourself like a Queen, other people will treat you like one. But if you feel “less than” because you are comparing yourself to skinny co-workers, then neither customers or coworkers will treat you with less than the respect you deserve.

Go in there, looking good with your head held high. Show customers you know how to put together great outfits. Size does not have to matter, even in Juniors. Want some inspiration? I suggest watching Monique’s Phat Girlz. It’s not the greatest movie, but it is an inspirational look at putting aside society’s view of weight and taking on self-confidence and self-love. Good and good for you. Another great show, Drop Dead Diva on Lifetime. This show looks at the re-birth of a model into the body of a previously downtrodden Plus Size attorney. The great part of the show for me was watching the transformation from downtrodden to banging. No she didn’t diet or lose weight, she just brought her Covergirl attitude to a Plus Size body—and a diva is born.

Let your Covergirl reign supreme! Work the products in your department to look styling and of the moment. If you know how to work the merchandise, you’ll be a hit with customers. Let’s face it, everyone shopping there is not a size 2. Go ahead and show how you can work the looks and many, many customers will come to you to show them how to work it too. I know you’ve got the goods, cause you’re a queen and you claim it. Work that style and claim the rest of your confidence. Remember, sometimes bigger is better!

Good luck,

GoodWitch

==

Image: DailyMail.co.uk

Juicy Coaching for Leaders and Individuals.

Mondays money, work, purpose dilemmas. Thursdays family, relationships, love dramedy. Send your FREE brewing questions on how to thrive—not just survive— modern life to: coaching@stillsitting.net.

© 2009 ManifestGroup. No materials may be used without expressed written permission.

Share