In continuing my series and following the book “Beautiful You: A Daily Guide to Radical Self-Acceptance” I’m now looking at two days together. Day 29 is focused on speaking positively and Day 30 is focused on those things I find beautiful. I’ll whiz by day 29 pretty quickly, because it’s not something I really struggle with and I think I do it very often. Day 30, I might spend a little more time discussing – although, briefly, because I really don’t intend each of these posts to be a dissertation.
Day 29: Speak Positively
On this day in the journal, the author is asking us to say positive things about others by “creating a world where people are embraced and celebrated”. I get it. This is the idea of focusing on the positive qualities others have, rather than the negative qualities they have. Truthfully, this is something my own mother taught me when I was young. She always expressed that people have different lives and will live those lives differently than I might live them. She used to tell me to try and find something you like about other people. I truly believe, all through my life I have done that. Were there times I found someone to be unbearable? Yes, I think so and sometimes it’s important to refrain from being around toxic people, but I also search and try to find something about that person that is good. Anyways, the bottom line is that there is supposedly some psychological karma-esque quality about saying good things to other people. I enjoy doing this anyways.
Day 30: Name the Beautiful
In this section, the author is asking us to write in our journals the people we find beautiful. And she asks two specific questions: “What is it that makes them so beautiful?” and “Do you use the same standard when judging yourself?” The reality is that I have a two-fold way of looking at this. There is some physical aestheticism that I appreciate and there is emotional or personality characteristics that I find beautiful.
When it comes to the aesthetic – or what some might call “superficial” – aspects of beauty, I have encountered random women that I have found appealing. Such as a woman who came into the restaurant I work at part time. I found her to be so gorgeous. Her black hair was perfect, her lipstick was perfect. Her eye-lashes were long and beautiful. Her lips were full and perfect. She had a nice petite body and was dressed really cute – especially the tan suede boots she was wearing. Even her teeth were perfect. I found myself feeling oddly intimidated by her perfection. Although, I know I can never BE female,I have noticed myself wishing I could be a woman as beautiful as she was. The problem for me, of course, is that thinking defies all logic. It defies my sensibilities and that, ultimately, makes me feel worse. Even when I think about this aspect of beauty, I know there are things we can’t control and we should learn to be grateful for what we do have and enhance the innate beauty of being a human being. There is always fantasy and always reality and it is probably most important to live in reality.
The other aspect of beauty I see are people’s emotional connections to others or their personality characteristics. One of my favorites, of course, is compassion. I find people with the ability to understand, care and empower others to be a phenomenal aspect of beauty. This is an ideal I strive for on a regular basis. I also find acts of kindness to be beautiful. Also, since I mentioned it above – I love it when people can see the good in others. I find those kinds of things to be the height of beauty in a person. These are all things I think we can achieve. In this way, I find no qualms with setting this standard of beauty for myself.