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You Are Beautiful

Articles Inspirational articles from Hay House authors

You Are Beautiful

A blueprint for self-love.
Michelle  Phillips
Michelle Phillips More by this author
Nov 03, 2011 at 10:00 AM

So many women seem to think a makeover is more like a do-over! They want to be totally different people, instead of embracing who they are. Sure, it would be nice to have a perfect figure, flawless skin, great hair, gorgeous eyes, and full lips—but who has all of those attributes? (If any?) It’s not realistic, believe me!

I work on TV and photo shoots where lighting is used to help soften the appearance of lines, wrinkles, blemishes, uneven skin tones, and bags under the eyes. I see how cameras are shaded so that the on-air personalities look (seemingly) perfect. All this in addition to the amount of time they have their hair, makeup, and wardrobe professionally put together. Plus, if it’s for a print photo shoot, then the images are often retouched digitally to make the talent appear perfect. It seems glamorous, but it’s not reality.

Society has become obsessed with beauty and fashion, placing an unrealistic emphasis on appearing youthful. Women are having plastic surgery and cosmetic enhancements starting in their early 20s and looking like distorted plastic dolls when they reach their golden years. The rise of reality TV, and young girls doing anything just to be famous makes me so sad. I find it destructive and devastating, and feel that we women are going backward as far as how we’re allowing ourselves to be perceived.

A recent study revealed that women today are less happy than women of the same ages 25 years ago. Why do you think that is so? One of my clients told me that while we’re aware of all the possibilities waiting for us, we’re also aware of everything lacking in our lives. Another suggested that the stress we face in trying to get it all and balance it all has been magnified by a terrible economy. So while the stresses are piling on and the economy is straining our wallets, the pressure is also getting more intense for us to maintain an artificial standard of beauty. It’s as if women are being squeezed out of the lives we fought so hard to win the right to have.

For many, the first sign that we’re losing that battle for our best life is a nagging dissatisfaction with our appearance. We know there is a standard, and we fear we can’t meet it. This fear often comes to a crisis point when we approach our 40s.

When a woman is in her 20s and 30s, she’s in her “getting years.” She’s focused on getting a job, a husband, a house, and children. Those goals take all of her mind, soul, and body to achieve. For many of us, after all these years of intense goal-oriented living, we wake up one morning and realize there’s nothing left on our “to get” list. We’re married (or we’ve been married), we have children and a comfortable home, and we’re established in our career. Suddenly we realize, with a sense of nagging dread, that although we may want everything we have, we don’t have everything we want! We achieved many of the goals we set in our 20s, but now we suspect our list wasn’t bold enough. It’s time to rediscover who we are and who we could be.

Our beauty shines when we allow ourselves to revel in our inner qualities and share them with the world. It’s in these moments that we are all beautiful. When we share from our hearts and help someone else learn from our experiences, or ask for support for ourselves, we cultivate our true beauty. It’s when we aren’t afraid to ask for the support we need, and when we open our hearts to each other, that true transformation occurs. That is when we open ourselves to what the pursuit of true beauty can help us achieve.

Oftentimes, we get overwhelmed, though. We are moms, sisters, daughters, friends, and co-workers. We form communities, playdates, parties, and PTA meetings. We run businesses and households. We volunteer to feed the homeless and help host charity events. And at the end of the day, we come home and still ask ourselves, Am I a good enough mom, wife, daughter, friend, and co-worker? We look in the mirror, decide we look like hell in a handbag, and wonder, What happened?

Do you see where I’m going here? Busy women fall out of touch with who they are and forget what they have to offer. They need to be reminded that they have divine gifts to offer the world. They need permission to celebrate themselves and know that it’s okay to bloom, soak in the sun, and express the wild colors they were created to be.

About Author
Michelle  Phillips
Born into the entertainment industry, Michelle Phillips has worked with major networks and stars of the film, TV, and music industry. She eventually moved in front of the camera, hosting beauty and style segments and becoming a well-known television Continue reading