Tag Archive | fashion

Fight Battles You Can Win

A big mistake, dear reader, that many women (and men, for that matter) make in their lives, is that they waste copious amounts of time and energy in fighting battles that they can’t win, either because they haven’t really prepared themselves properly to win, or because what they are in is simply a no-win situation.

Sharon Stone photographed by Annie Leibovitz for Vanity Fair US March 2007:

“He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight.” – Sun Tzu

“Thus it is in war the victorious strategist only seeks battle after the victory has been won, whereas he who is destined to defeat first fights and afterwards looks for victory.” – Sun Tzu

“Move not unless you see an advantage; use not your troops unless there is something to be gained; fight not unless the position is critical.” – Sun Tzu

This is what is meant when it is said to go after realistic goals.  It doesn’t mean to dull down your ultimate vision and to settle, but in order to get to that ultimate finish line you can’t waste too much time in situations where you are guaranteed not to win.

One example is when people tend to over-reach and put themselves in positions for which they are unprepared, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.  They simply are not ready.  They haven’t done the work, they haven’t trained.  It would be like Roger Bannister expecting he could break the 4 minute mile barrier simply sitting on his couch without countless hours on the track and in the gym and rehearsing the act over and over again in his mind.  It is of course absurd yet countless women (and men) engage in this sort of thinking all the time.

Love a blouse with turtleneck. Sophisticated, stong, romantic, professional and feminine all in one.:

 

“Average people seem to have a strategy of ‘Ready, fire, aim!’  In other words, most people fail to do the necessary preparation and planning it takes to succeed.  Middle-class performers have a fondness for winging it.  Amateur performers are always looking for the easy road, yet appear to be confounded by their lack of success.”

Another way people tend to put themselves in a no-win situation is out of fear – they simply use the situation as an excuse as to why they didn’t go after what they wanted or couldn’t face something difficult – they deplete their energy and capability in distraction.

“For some of us, fighting losing battles is a form of distraction or compulsion, like OCD or an irrational need to check your email and Twitter account every 30 seconds.  Others simply don’t know any better.”

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.

 

Beautiful Shabby Chic Dresser -- I found one of these in an antique store and it is truly gorgeous!:

 

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.

 

this is like me when getting ready for a night out- no vodka just yet, but a cup of tea would do nicely, thank you!:

 

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.

 

 

Dealing with Non~Constructive Criticism

As a refined and elegant woman of excellence, dear reader, you need to hold yourself to a high standard of behavior.

One area where that will be tested is in how you react and respond to criticism that is sent out with the intent to hurt you, that is, criticism that is not constructive.  You need to understand where this comes from and what the appropriate response is, because your natural instinct is likely to respond in kind, or to internalize it and feel bad about yourself.

 

images via Glamour (Spain).  photos by Bèla Adler and Salvador Fresneda, model Valerie van der Graaf, styling by Miriam Arruga:

 

This was the battle of Jackie Robinson’s life:

Rickey’s voice rose. ‘Suppose I’m a player. . . in the heat of an important ball game.’ He drew back as if to charge at Robinson. ‘Suppose I collide with you at second base. When I get up, I yell, ‘You dirty, black son of a -‘ ‘He finished the castigation and added calmly, ‘What do you do?’

Robinson blinked. He licked his lips and swallowed.

‘Mr. Rickey,’ he murmured, ‘do you want a ballplayer who’s afraid to fight back?’

‘I want a ballplayer with guts enough not to fight back!’ Rickey exclaimed almost savagely. He paced across the floor and returned with finger pointing. ‘You’ve got to do this job with base hits and stolen bases and fielding ground balls, Jackie. Nothing else!’

 

He initially thought as you likely do at this moment, dear reader, that you must “stand up for yourself” and “fight back.”  However, imagine if Robinson had behaved in that way, with his natural instincts.  He would have never made it into the Baseball Hall of Fame, or have broken the “color barrier” to become the legend we still remember him as today.  His energy would have been wasted on such petty issues that truly didn’t matter, instead of being channeled into a direction that changed history.

 

 

Now if could just get my breast to be like this again, oh wait they were never like this, what was I thinking?:

 

 

But there is a better, more intelligent option available to you.

It may seem counter-intuitive, but what you must do is to simply ignore that criticism, and if possible, simply shut it out completely or disallow its access to you in the first place.

Whatever you do, do not show a reaction to it.  True transcendence and imperviousness to this kind of behavior will come when you understand it and can dismiss it as both untrue and irrelevant.  As opposed to constructive criticism, which comes from a place of true concern and love, this comes from a place of hatred and the intent to cause you pain.  At that point, it’s not important whether the criticism is true, has some basis in truth, or is completely false – as long as it achieves the intended result of shutting you down or making you feel less about yourself, it “wins” so to speak.

 

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When you don’t react to it, you deny that desire, and the frustration and negativity that originally motivated the criticism will increase in the source, instead of transferring itself to you.

When you react – either positively or negatively, it doesn’t matter – you give satisfaction and you allow such criticism access to you.  Moreover, when you react, you make yourself appear less mature, and less powerful – you lose some of the respect others have for you, even if they were the ones who tried to get you to respond to their criticism.  When you don’t react, you dismiss such words and emotions as inferior to you, which they truly are.  The person who originated the criticism will feel that and will likely feel even worse because they understand that on a subconscious level.

As a beautiful and loving feminine woman, a woman of power who does important and meaningful work, you can’t afford to take on such negativity – you must learn to respond correctly.

You can usually sense what kind of criticism you are dealing with, dear reader, when you tune into your feminine intuition.  When your mother tells you that she’s concerned about an unhealthy life-style choice you have made, this is likely coming from a place of love, and is constructive criticism.  When an associate puts you down in a belittling way, or tries to humiliate you in front of others, that is non-constructive criticism.

 

#2 Sandra lives in a luxurious society. She does not always like being in this society because she feels out of place. Others at Yale, though, have no problem with living the ritzy life. ♕:

 

What’s important to understand first and foremost is that such non-constructive criticism is never personal.  It is never about you or what it true in your own life.  It is always about the person who is giving it and how he or she feels inside.  This is why internalizing such feedback and criticism will be a mistake and makes you feel so terrible.  When you accept and internalize constructive criticism, on the other hand, it will lead you to make positive changes, and to feel better about yourself.

huge part of leading a healthy lifestyle and taking care of yourself as a high-value, and powerful woman is to close yourself off to such behavior.

Not understanding this, you internalize comments and ideas that prevent you from being the amazing and incredible woman you were meant to be, dear reader (:

Designer Spotlight: Yves St. Laurent

Yves Saint Laurent (YSL), now Saint Laurent Paris, dear reader, is one of the greatest names and designers in fashion.

 

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Founded by a man named Yves Henri Donat Mathieu-Saint-Laurent in 1961, the luxury label is known for it’s high-quality pieces that range from the woman’s tuxedo to men’s and women’s ready-to-wear.

With a revenue of just over $1.2 billion, the French fashion house is a force to be reckoned with, as was the man (d. 2008), who was talented enough to become the head designer of Dior at the impressive age of 21.

Coats

The pieces are smart, stylish, and eternally sophisticated, making them beautiful additions to any woman’s closet.

The quality is unparalleled and the design reaches just the right balance of classic restraint and modern freedom with an overall effect of empowering the feminine.

“Today everyone is talking about gender. Yves decided to pass the power from the men’s shoulders to the women’s,” he revealed. “We never interfered with each other, I never went to his studio. I decided to respect the creation before the business.” – Pierre Bergé, Yves St. Laurent Business Partner

 

White stilettos with gold heels and matching clutch for Yves St. Laurent #FCM #Glamorous #YSL:

 

Saint Laurent hypnotized with his imaginative creations. An exacting sense of color, cut, exoticism and androgyny were his signatures, as was the infamously fragile constitution that led him to retreat from the fashion world altogether in his final years. Yet his influence remains strong—current designers such as Marc Jacobs, Miuccia Prada and Jean Paul Gaultier frequently reference Saint Laurent’s work in their own collections. Over the course of his 40-plus-year career, Saint Laurent regularly produced a legacy of instant classics (the trapeze dress, the safari jacket, the Mondrian shift and the eternally iconic le smoking) not to mention the concept of ready-to-wear, which he launched in 1966 with his Rive Gauche collection. Then there are those initials, three letters—YSL—that will forever be associated with the pinnacle of French chic.

“Fashions fade, style is eternal.” – Yves St. Laurent

“Over the years, I have learned that what is important in a dress is the woman who wears it.” – Yves St. Laurent

“We must never confuse elegance with snobbery.” – Yves St. Laurent

“Isn’t elegance forgetting what one is wearing?” – Yves St. Laurent

Gorgeous color combination from Yves Saint Laurent.:

 

 

Blazer Jacket

 

 

 

Yves Saint Laurent ~  Lip and Shadow  Colors:

 

Subdued neutral outfit perfect for pairing with that Saint Laurent handbag. #bloggers #outfit #bags:

 

#street #style pink pink black black Yves Saint Lauret @wachabuy:

 

 

The Allure of the Cat-Woman

Women, dear reader, have been associated with cats since the antiheroine character was first invented in the Batman series.

Perhaps more widely known now from the 2004 film in which Halle Berry starred as the central “Catwoman”, the juxtaposition in society’s mind about women and cats is certainly fascinating.

 

Amanda Seyfried by Vincent Peters for Glamour Spain November 2015:

 

Look at the graceful movements of a cat. Observe the lazy seductive stretches of its body. Cats are the natural exhibitors of female sex appeal. Any woman wanting to learn seductive female body language could learn well from observing a cat, and carry herself in a similar fashion. Humans have always been seduced by this appeal of these creatures from history.

Cats, dear reader, have been judged to be very feminine creatures (after all, they are referred to as felines), and if a woman would like to act in a more feminine manner, she would do well to observe and incorporate the sleek grace and cold independence of a cat.

Cats, unlike dogs, can take care of themselves; they spend many hours of each day grooming and in general, seem far less dependent upon their human owners to provide for them.

Cats can seem very self-absorbed as well, and unlike dogs do not lavish constant attention on their owner.  Instead, they go about their business and make it known when they want affection by rubbing against one’s legs, purring loudly, or staring intently with large and transfixing eyes.

Catwoman:

Most importantly, dear reader, if you wish to act in the same feline manner of the cat (or catwoman), then it is necessary for you to be independent, emotionally, financially, and otherwise, as this is what will enable you to bargain for love and affection only when and how you want it, rather than tolerating less that what you both desire and deserve (:

Try picking up a cat at any time, and see how it will scratch you. A cat’s affection for you is essentially an act of investment on it’s end.  Cats only need affection on their own terms.

 

( =^..^=Thanks, Pinterest Pinners, for stopping by, viewing, re-pinning, & following my boards. Have a beautiful day! ^..^ and “Feel free to share on Pinterest ^..^ #catsandme #cats #doghealthcareblog:

Over-thinking

Many women, dear reader, have a tendency to over-think.  At times, this analytical and cautious nature is useful and very helpful, but often-times it is counter-productive.

The trick, is telling the difference (:

 

MONOCHROMATIC LUXE: I'M ALL SET~LET'S GO!!:

 

Rather than repressing this trait, it is better simply to understand when and when it does not serve or benefit you, that way you may repress it at appropriate times.

“The sharpest minds often ruin their lives by overthinking the next step, while the dull win the race with eyes closed.”

Over-thinking, dear reader, not only prevents you from taking positive action, it can even create more problems in and of itself.

Shakespeare’s character Hamlet is a classic case-in-point.  He knows he must avenge his father’s wrongful murder, but he vacillates continuously throughout the play, unsure of what is the perfect or “correct” course of action to take.  As a result of his hesitation each step of the way, nearly everyone close to him dies in some manner, and eventually he too succumbs to the same fate.

 

Marie Antoinette inspiration shoot: http://www.stylemepretty.com/canada-weddings/ontario/toronto/2014/07/21/marie-antoinette-inspiration-shoot/ | Photography: http://kristafox.com/:

 

Dear reader, there is no “correct” course of action, in anyone’s life.

Overthinking, especially when our moods affect our thoughts, is detrimental to our normal functions.  A study from UC Santa Barbara suggests that thinking too much about a situation impedes our judgment and performance. The results? When conscious processes of explicit memory were disrupted in the prefrontal cortex, participants remembered images better. The decision-making process became more accurate when participants simply guessed and didn’t actively think through their decision.

Science confirms what common wisdom already knows – that is, that over-thinking rarely, if ever, helps a situation.

That being said, however, there is a difference between not over-thinking and acting with no forethought whatsoever, impulsively.

Impulsive action is perhaps just as bad as over-thinking and should be avoided as well.

 

French Colonial Traditional Vintage Bookshelf- I like the bookshelf with the accessories, but the sofa is not my style .:

 

Not all “snap decisions” are impulsive ones either, dear reader, but it is advisable to assess before taking a course of action that you have good reason to do so and aren’t simply reacting without direction.

Over-thinking happens when a woman second-guesses herself, repeatedly.  It happens because she doesn’t trust her own intuition and judgement.  She keeps searching for alternative scenarios, often over things through which she has incomplete knowledge and can only make an educated guess decision in the best of all worlds.

Many people who have jobs that depend on their decision-making abilities have reached a level of acceptance about this, a mental world-view that enables them to be highly effective at what they do:

“You can’t plan every step in life.  I know that I could have been better… at almost everything that I’ve done.  I don’t have any doubt about that; but I think I did okay.” –  Condoleezza Rice

“You learn that you are very often weighing, balancing, unpalatable choices.  It’s not so black and white; very often you have bad alternatives, and you’re trying to choose between them.  I don’t mind taking decisions.  The fact is in decision-making you don’t always have all of the information you want or need; but you don’t have the luxury of not making a decision. ” – Condoleezza Rice

“You can’t make decisions based on fear and the possibility of what might happen.” – Michelle Obama

“Presidents quickly realize that while a single act might destroy the world they live in, no one single decision can make life suddenly better or can turn history around for the good.” – Lyndon B. Johnson

“A peacefulness follows any decision, even the wrong one.” – Rita Mae Brown

“You must be single minded.  Drive for the one thing on which you have decided.” – George S. Patton, Jr., Four Star Army General

Rather than over-thinking and thus prolonging the decision-making process dear reader, it is better to simply choose the path you believe is best based on current knowledge and understanding at the time, and adjust later, if need be.
Elegant & Chic:

 

“At the moment a decision is made, we cannot possibly know whether it is good or bad.  Decision quality, when measured by results, can only be know as the consequences of the decision become known.  Good managers are not only good analytic decision makers; more important, they are skilled in managing the consequences of their decisions.”

“Few successful leaders spend much time fretting about decisions once they are past… The only way he can give adequate attention to the decisions he has to make tomorrow is to put those of yesterday firmly behind him.”

 

maggie sottero bateau sheath gown in lace:

Perfume

Perfume, dear reader, has the power to transform (:

It turns the dull and every-day into the fascinating and charming.

 

25 Best Perfumes  Scent can be a very personal thing -- what makes one person feel like a goddess can make another gag -- but some fragrances are (almost) universally loved. From designer perfume brands like Chanel and Dior to more discount fragrances by Aveda and Mary Kay, see which top beauty products our readers love most.:

 

A woman, dear reader, is often known by the perfume she wears; it is a signature.

“It creates a shimmering invisible armor that lingers in a room long after its wearer has gone and infuses our imagination with a subtle power, hinting at a hidden identity.”

What is perhaps so appealing about a woman’s perfume, dear reader, is its subtlety.

It is enough to notice and become aware of, but it stops there; unlike perhaps some other accessories, it is designed to attract attention to the woman wearing it, not to the object itself.

It is therefore important to select the right scent, both for one-self and for the occasion.

It is worth it to visit a high-end perfume retailer and spend some time carefully going through the various products, testing them to determine which is the best fit for you.

 

A snoozy vase gets an elegant makeover when you print out a sticker that makes it look like a perfume bottle. Can't make stickers in your printer? Draw a label on a piece of heavy paper and use glass glue.:

 

Remember, dear reader, that nowhere is the maxim “quality over quantity” more true than in the search for one’s perfume.

Several bottles of well-chosen perfume may last a woman years (:

Hastily choosing the wrong ones, though, will likely result in a purchase that goes unused, rarely used, or must be thrown out.

It is worth stressing, dear reader, that it absolutely does not pay to be cheap when shopping for a perfume.

Perfumes can be anywhere from light, flirty, and playful to deep, moody, and dramatic.

They are often categorized by flavor as either citrus, sweet or fruity, floral, woodsy, oriental, spicy, and fresh, but there are also different forms of the product that you should be familiar with as well (taken from perfume.com):

 

Beautiful perfume bottle:

 

Parfum

Parfum, also known as extrait de parfum or pure perfume, has the highest fragrance concentration. Parfum will contain anywhere from 15% to 40% fragrance however concentration is generally between 20% to 30% for most parfums. Of all scents, parfums last the longest; usually six to eight hours. Parfum generally also commands the highest price of all the fragrance types due to the high concentration of fragrance. People with sensitive skin may do better with parfums as they have far less alcohol than other fragrance types and therefore are not as likely to dry out the skin.

Eau de Parfum

After parfum, eau de parfum (EDP) has the next highest concentration of fragrance. Eau de parfum generally has a fragrance concentration of between 15% and 20%. On average, eau de parfum will last for four to five hours. It is also generally less expensive that parfum and while it does have a higher concentration of alcohol than parfum, it is better for sensitive skin than other fragrance types. Eau de parfum is one of the most common fragrance types and is suitable for everyday wear.

 

How to make your perfume last—on your skin and on the shelf:

 

Eau de Toilette

Eau de toilette (EDT) has a fragrance concentration of between 5% and 15%. It is cheaper than eau de parfum and is one of the most popular types of fragrance available. EDT fragrance will normally last for two to three hours. Eau de toilette is considered by some to be for daywear while eau de parfum is considered nightwear. The term eau de toilette came from the French term “faire sa toilette” which means getting ready.

Eau de Cologne

Eau de cologne, or EDC, has a much lower concentration of fragrance than the above types of perfume. EDC generally has a 2% to 4% percent concentration of fragrance and a high concentration of alcohol. It is cheaper than other types of fragrance however the scent generally only lasts for up to two hours. EDC generally comes in bigger bottles and more of the fragrance needs to be used. Originally eau de cologne referred to a traditional recipe that used herb and citrus notes with little anchoring with base notes.

 

drew barrymore fragrance | Drew Barrymore Adds Fragrances To Flower Beauty Collection Making Us ...does it smell nice?  hopefully not overpowering --  can't imagine it is knowing her disposition!:

 

Eau Fraiche

Eau fraiche is similar to eau de cologne in that the scent will generally last for up to two hours. Eau fraiche has an even lower concentration of fragrance than eau de cologne, normally only 1% to 3%. While eau fraiche has a low fragrance concentration, it does not contain a high amount of alcohol. Along with the fragrance, the remainder of eau fraiche is mostly water.

 

“A woman who doesn’t wear perfume has no future.” – Coco Chanel

 

Happy perfume shopping (:

 

 

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