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Seeing Things As They Are

One trait that will truly advance you in life, dear reader, is the ability to see things as they really are instead of how you may wish them to be or assume them to be.

 

michelle-obama-portrait-art-streiber-variety:

 

Such objectivity requires maturity and even courage in many situations, and is harder to practice than it is to understand.

“One may know how to conquer without being able to do it.” – Sun Tzu

Facing the truth of a situation is the first step towards any kind of progress or change.  And it is often difficult, even scary.  It means shattering a bit of your own ego, and while it will benefit you in the long-run, the immediate effect can be intense pain.  To admit to yourself something true that you don’t like hurts.  It also means that you’re no longer giving yourself the option to tolerate it – admitting the truth to yourself often forces you into change, change that you may not feel ready for; to let go of the false illusion you’ve been holding on to will create a sense of loss that you must mentally, emotionally, psychologically, and materially deal with.

 

Something I definitely always do to calm me during moments of shyness:

 

“The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their proper name.” – Confucius

For example, admitting to yourself that your relationship is rocky and has more downs than ups will create pain, especially if you have been pretending things are perfect and rationalizing it to yourself for a long time.  What’s more, when you truly look at the situation for what it is, you will realize that you are losing something that you never fully had in reality, but only thought you did.  It is actually a gain, but it won’t feel like it at the time.

As long as you pretend and lie to yourself, the more you rob yourself of the chance for real progress and greater happiness.

 

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“The wise men of antiquity, when they wished to make the whole world peaceful and happy, first put their own States into proper order.  Before putting their States into proper order, they regulated their own families.  Before regulating their families, they regulated themselves.  Before regulating themselves, they tried to be sincere in their thoughts.  Before being sincere in their thoughts, they tried to see things exactly as they really were.” – Confucius

You must have the courage, dear reader, to face the truth and the confidence that you will be able to handle the consequences.  If you can’t handle the truth, you won’t be able to handle anything.

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The Art of Transparent, Effective, Communication

The feminine woman of excellence, dear reader, has mastered the art of communication.  She doesn’t internalize and repress her feelings nor does she act out aggressively and angrily.

 

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The key to great communication is that you mustn’t be afraid to speak your truth, and to do it right away.  There is nothing to be ashamed about if someone does something hurtful to you.  Many women are afraid to speak up because they take such treatment personally and allow it to eat away at their self-confidence when more often than not it has absolutely nothing to do with them.  Sometimes, someone will treat you poorly because they truly and simply don’t care about how you feel, but most of the time the other person doesn’t even realize that what they were doing was hurtful and assumes that you aren’t bothered in the slightest!  Again, they magnify the meaning of the event and the consequences and this makes them too frozen and uncomfortable to act.  Either way, remaining silent sends the wrong message.

Because they attach so much significance to it, many women find themselves tongue-tied.  So then they never communicate that they were hurt, disappointed, angry, etc – or if they do, they won’t be able to do it in a mature and assertive way that the other person will actually pay attention to – and they end up being ignored and virtually guarantee that the offensive behavior will become a pattern.

 

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A crucial mistake many women make is that they wait far, far too long for the pattern to manifest before speaking up.  Small issues snowball into crucial battles of will.

“The first piece of advice I would have from my experience is that governments need to be vocal about human rights.  My advice to you is not only to be vocal and consistent, but also to be principled in communications about human rights.  Another suggestion I have is to be quick.”  – Amal Clooney

One of the reasons why Amal is able to maintain such a strong relationship with a man like George Clooney where so many other women have failed is undoubtedly because she fully understands this principle on an intuitive, not just intellectual, level and has the courage to put it into practice.  Most men, even those at George Clooney’s level, are used to women communicating and behaving in ways that they term to be “annoying,” “passive-aggressive,” or “nagging”, and this really does have the effect of pushing them away in a relationship.  Men don’t want a shy little girl who is a pushover and can’t speak up for herself, but they don’t want a “bitch” who rages at them either.  Open, clear, and authentic communication that shows a woman knows what she wants and will stand up for it is what will get her results.

 

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Another important point, as she says here, in politics, as well as in human relations it is also important to be consistent.

It’s going to be hard to get yourself taken seriously if you are constantly vacillating on what is and what is not okay.  Credibility is built by “sticking to your guns” and being honest and authentic about the way something makes you feel.  This doesn’t mean that you are never allowed to change your mind about key issues, but you must appear and be firm.

 

 

Finding Your Way

A lot of women, dear reader, don’t really know who they are – instead of confidently going after what it is they want in life, they’re shrinking themselves and settling.

 

“Even the wisest woman you talk to is ignorant of something you may know, but an elegant woman never forgets her elegance.”:

 

They feel defeated and they settle for what they can get, instead of having the faith that they can do and be whatever they set their minds to be.  They are afraid to speak their minds and their truth – they are more worried about how they will come off and upsetting others’ feelings than they are in simply being okay with expressing themselves.

Because of this, true intimacy eludes them.  How can you bond with another, dear reader, if you never let them see or know your true self?  Your true self is what you love, what brings you joy, and it is your authentic feelings.  Many suppress this to the detriment of their health, emotions, well-being, and relationships because they don’t yet know how to express what they are through their words and through their actions with the attitude of take it or leave it.

 

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You can’t create or be who you are if you are trying to be someone else’s mouth-piece.  You need to find your own voice, dear reader.  You must stop thinking of whether what you are about to do or say is going to impress another or bring you the money, love, success, etc that you want, and simply speak from the heart and mind.

This is easier said than done.  Simply trying to “love yourself” doesn’t work – it’s like attempting to pursue happiness or a butterfly directly.

Ask yourself what do I think?  What do I feel about this?  Becoming who you are, dear reader, is largely about learning to make your own decisions.  Many people aren’t able to make even the smallest decisions.  It’s a chicken and egg scenario – they don’t know their values and who they are, so they don’t have much of a compass to guide them in decision-making, and they avoid making decisions, so they don’t have much practice in seeing what’s for them and what isn’t.

 

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Much of the process of becoming who you are is going down wrong avenues and failing.  The problem is that so many women are afraid of getting “lost” or making the wrong choices that they’re not able to get where they need to go.  We tend to magnify things and make them seem as though they are a much bigger deal than they truly are.  You need to give yourself the permission to fail occasionally, because on the course of becoming your true self and reaching your full potential it will happen a lot.  If you make your own decision and it’s wrong, at least it will be your own failure and you can learn from it.  As long as someone else made the choice for you, you won’t learn and you won’t move forwards.

Some things, like cocaine, don’t need to be sampled for you to know that they are harmful, dear reader.  But the only way to really know who you are and what you want in life is to take the chance that you might be wrong.  So what if that fashion internship doesn’t work out?  You aren’t farther away from success and discovering your true self, you are closer!  You’ve placed a certainty in an area that was previously an unknown.

 

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The problem is that many have been trained to look at these sorts of explorations as “failures” and then take it personally and feel terrible about themselves when it doesn’t work out, creating an inability to move past that point, or tragically for many, never starting at all.

That same mindset makes dating and relationships for women a nightmare.  A divorced woman is looked upon as a loser.  A girl who just went through a breakup and ended a relationship that wasn’t right for her is pitied when in fact it should be the opposite!  What you need to do, dear reader, is applaud yourself at each step of the way, because the world won’t react when you simply get closer, it will react when you’ve achieved tangible results.

 

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Think of it this way – no one was supporting and cheering on Oprah before she became Oprah.  She didn’t know she was going to one day lead a national talk show and reach the heights of fame, but what she also didn’t do was let others define her or let her think of herself as someone who she wasn’t.

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.  Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results for others’ people’s thinking.  Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice.  And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.”

Another aspect of this that can be difficult is that sometimes, your connection to your internal compass will have become weak and it won’t feel as clear as it does at other times.

 

Hear the whisper in the air As the water flows around Listen at the sound As it calms you down:

 

One way to know when you are about to make a wrong decision is if it feels like you are betraying yourself by doing so.  If you have to give up something of yourself up to make it, it will take you farther away.

The majority of people, dear reader, let the world and others mold them into who they become, because they choose to betray themselves and their own wants and needs rather than rejecting and refusing others.  It goes beyond simple people-pleasing.  It’s looked at as something wrong and selfish to act in your own best interests and make choices that others don’t like because it upsets their own comfort and balance in life.

“I’m learning how to drown out the constant noise that is such an inseparable part of my life.  I don’t have to prove anything to anyone, I only have to follow my heart and concentrate on what I want to say to the world.  I run my world.” – Beyonce Knowles

“Your self-worth is determined by you.  You don’t have to depend on someone telling you who you are.” – Beyonce Knowles

 

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Yes, the choices you make will affect the people around you, but ultimately you must decide if you are going to become who you are and stay true to yourself or if you are going to remain limited and unsure of yourself because you let another who can never possibly know you as well as you know you make your decisions.  Doing what’s best for you is not going to harm or hurt others.  You need to understand and recognize that reaction from others for what it is so that you can dismiss it and move forwards.  It’s simply a groundless fear of change.

“I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself.  If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul.  I want to know if you can see beauty even when it’s not pretty every day and if you can source your own life from its presence.”

Some of the hardest choices you will ever make, dear reader, will be the ones in which you have to put yourself first in this way.  It will feel like you need to go backwards and do what is easier and more comfortable in the short-term.  When in search of encouragement for making those decisions, and for help in “bearing the accusation of betrayal” that you will undoubtedly come across, just remember that as hard as that decision is to make, the pain will be temporary – if you make the decision you know isn’t right, instead of a short blow that knocks you out, you’ll be stuck living chronically unfulfilled and unhappy.

 

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Handling Rejection, Becoming a Brand

Many women, dear reader, are generic imitations rather than their own brand.  This is the reason why so many have difficulty handling rejection emotionally, because they are unsure of themselves and who they are, and therefore will take rejection from someone else personally.

 

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The woman who has made herself her own unique brand, however, and has the courage to stand by it, will not have to place so much importance into what another thinks of her – she will be more centered and sure of herself.

“It takes guts to be a brand.  It takes guts to stand for what you believe in, even if it’s not popular.  You can’t be all things to all people if you want to be a brand.”

Women who have not yet developed themselves into a brand are the ones who are out trying too hard to fit into what others deem as cool, what a man wants in a relationship, and are slaves to outside opinion.

Not everyone likes Coca-Cola.  In fact, some despise everything it stands for.  However, because Coca-Cola developed itself into a centralized brand with clear distinctions that make it unmistakably what it is, virtually everyone knows what it is and is not, and it is the reason why it is currently a successful multi-billion dollar company.

 

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Coca-cola isn’t concerned over the fact that some dislike and won’t buy their product.  That rejection has no power over them and it isn’t taken personally because it is simply a fundamental truth that brands are not designed for universal consumption in the way that something generic is.

Companies, people, and especially women simply cannot be all things to all people and should never try to be!

Many bad relationships, dear reader, are the result of a woman not understanding her brand and standing by it.  Kris Humphries disliked Kim Kardashian’s materialism, extravagance, obsession with makeup, and other qualities that were simply part of who she was as a woman and as a brand.  Not understanding that those qualities were part of her brand and that whoever was going to be her life-partner needed to accept them rather than continuously neg them, she didn’t stand up for those aspects of herself and as a result ended up in an extremely unhappy, destructive, and unhealthy marriage.  This wasn’t some fundamental failing on either of their parts, it was simply a case of a die-hard health nut being forced to partner with McDonalds.

The woman who can turn herself into a brand is the woman who is above the emotional sting of taking rejection, in any form, personally.  Kim didn’t need to sit and beat herself up over the fact that she wasn’t everything Humphries wanted, she went out and found Kanye!  The woman who develops her unique brand and fully embraces it rejects those who reject her.  She doesn’t have to try so hard to be something she’s not, but instead she’s at ease and relaxed.  She has more control over who she is and what she does, and she is firmly in the driver’s seat of her own life and relationships.

 

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An Attitude of Expectancy

The feminine woman of excellence, dear reader, always lives with an attitude of expectancy.

 

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What is this exactly?  It the belief, the conviction that something wonderful, new, and exciting is about to happen.

No matter where she goes or what she is engaged in, dear reader, she has this belief, and because she does, it tends to fulfill itself. (:

“You must know that in any moment a decision you make can change the course of your life forever: the very next person you stand behind in line or sit next to on an airplane, the very next phone call you make or receive, the very next movie you see or book you read or page you turn could be the one single thing that causes the floodgates to open, and all of the things that you’ve been waiting for to fall into place. If you really want your life to be passionate, you need to live with this attitude of expectancy.”

 

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An attitude of expectancy infuses you with a sense of possibility that gives you the positivity, optimism, and energy to pursue the life you and and the goals that inspire you.

A woman with such an attitude sees challenges as opportunities and she continuously asks “why not” when presented with a new idea or proposition instead of thinking of the multitude of reasons why it can’t be done.  What’s more, her eyes are opened to the possibilities of life, and because of that she is able to recognize opportunities and resources that most can’t.

 

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She lives a richer, more fulfilled life, and is able to add color to the lives of those she comes into contact with as well.  (:

How to Be a High Value Woman

There is one key feature of the high value woman, dear reader – one trait that instantly determines whether or not she is “high value” or “high status.”

 

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And that one trait is that she gives value to whomever she comes into contact with.

The low-value woman (or person) is immediately identifiable in by the reverse trait.  She takes from those she comes into contact with.  This is because this is all she is capable of – she hasn’t evolved, matured, and developed herself to the point of being capable of giving to others.

She is concerned and focused on what she is receiving in her relationships, rather than on what she is giving and how she is making another’s life and experience better.

The high-value woman understand the importance of contribution.  She contributes with her professional work, her family, her relationships, and her community.

 

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She looks for ways she can make things better, and because she is constantly looking, she finds them everywhere (:

She cares about and lives for more than just herself.  And this is where her high sense of self-worth and self-esteem come from also.  It is impossible, dear reader, to feel great about yourself unless you can feel that you are contributing in some way to people and causes that are outside of and larger than yourself.

 

“What I know is, that you have to take responsibility for the space you hold, here” – Oprah Winfrey

 

In personal relationships, the high value woman does not complain or gossip or behave in petty or immature ways because she understands that these behaviors are all draining and take value from whoever she is interacting with.

 

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When she has been hurt or is tired and stressed, she does not falsely pretend that she doesn’t feel those emotions, but she is also mature enough not to act out on them destructively or to complain.

Instead, she adds value to those she comes into contact through through her humanity, her generosity, her concern, her femininity, her deep emotion, and her compassion.

Her smile and her tears have the power to move the world because she is that influential and high value.  (:

 

 

Living from the Inside, Out

Many women, dear reader, will react to a problem in their life by attempting to directly change the external factors that are involved.

 

Long ago in Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia women understood the importance of our feminine soul.:

 

For example, if a child, friend, lover, or coworker isn’t behaving the way she desires them to, she reacts by either ordering the person involved to change or by complaining and arguing about the undesired behavior.

While simply suppressing one’s feelings and saying or doing nothing doesn’t work, neither does this.

And the reason it doesn’t work is because such a reaction comes out of not understanding that your world is simply a reflection of who you are, and that the only thing you can control  directly is yourself, never the world outside of you.

It’s as though you are looking at the events of life through a mirror, and when you don’t like what you see, you attempt to change what is in the reflection, rather than the source, which will in turn change the reflection.

 

Blush and Bubblegum:

 

This is all a bit abstract, but try it for yourself – the next time there is something in your world you aren’t happy with, stop and figure out what is inside of you that is causing that to show up, and once you identify it, you’ll have the power to change both it and the reflection in your world.

There is a common parable that captures this phenomenon well:

A man who was traveling came upon a farmer working in his field and asked him what the people in the next village were like. The farmer asked “What were the people like in the last village you visited?” The man responded “They were kind, friendly, generous, great people.” “You’ll find the people in the next village are the same,” said the farmer.
Another man who was traveling to the same village came up to the same farmer somewhat later and asked him what the people in the next village were like. Again the farmer asked “What were the people like in the last village you visited?” The second man responded, “They were rude, unfriendly, dishonest people.” “You’ll find the people in the next village are the same,” said the farmer.

Best of luck, dear reader! (:

 

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