In this installment of my series on women in their forties, I will focus on how women can achieve a level of satisfaction with their physical appearance they did not previously enjoy in years past. To reiterate my reasons for writing this series of articles, it was inspired by my recent fortieth birthday. I hope to make this decade of my life happier and more fulfilling than any other. I have always considered myself a work in progress, as I don’t believe we should ever stop trying to improve ourselves. One area that I feel that women are far too hard on themselves, myself included, is how we criticize and pick apart our physical appearance. This piece will offer several suggestions on how we all can finally take the focus off of what we perceive as physical flaws and, instead, accentuate the positives and focus on those.
See Yourselves As Your Children See You. My children always tell me how beautiful how I am. It truly warms my heart that they don’t see the gray hairs that creep in in the last few days before I get my hair dyed again, or the extra ten pounds that I perpetually gain and lose throughout the year. They see my heart and my smile, they hear my laughter and the heaps of praise and affection I pile on them. Your children see you as the most beautiful woman in the world and when the doubts and insecurities start to creep on, try to see yourself in that way too.
Don’t Skimp On Sleep. When women start to get into their forties, it is not as easy fake the appearance of being well rested. Not only does being tired make us look droopy, it definitely affects our mood too. It is just not as easy to pull an all night-er as it was in our twenties. Leave that extra pile of laundry, use the DVR to record your favorite show and make getting enough sleep a priority.
Use Beauty Products Geared Towards Women In Their Forties. Our skin may not be as smooth as it once was, and our teeth not as bright. Our eyelashes may be a bit thinner and our hair not as thick and lush. IF you have always relied on the same makeup and beauty products to get yourself looking your best, it may be time to make a few adjustments. You may be surprised at the difference you see from just replacing a few products in your beauty arsenal.
Exercise. Exercising will increase energy, those feel good chemicals in the brain that make you feel satisfied with life and make you feel accomplished and proud that you are taking care of your body. All of those factors add up to an increased overall feeling of attractiveness.
Smile As Often As Possible. Happy people are commonly regarded as more attractive than sullen and angry people. Smiling at those around you not only brightens their day, it also gives you a nice lift. This in turn, makes you feel happier and more attractive. There are no downsides to smiling. It is good for you, and good for those around you. Knowing you shared the gift of your smile with someone just makes you feel good about yourself, and therefore more attractive to others.
Stop Comparing Yourself To Women On Television And Magazine Covers. We women get ourselves into trouble by comparing ourselves to models and actresses we see in the media. I am always fascinated by those Before and After pictures of celebrities, and the interviews in which models and actresses say they themselves wish they looked like they are made up to in prints and on the screen. While there are certainly some naturally beautiful and flawless celebrities, for the most part, models and actresses have a whole team of people behind them to work on their hair and makeup, and are photographed and filmed in very flattering lighting. That is fantasy, not reality.
Change Your Inner Conversations In Regards To Your Physical Appearance. Instead of looking in the mirror and telling yourself how much you hate your jiggly upper arms or the laugh lines on your face, tell yourself you are gifted and blessed to have two working arms and enough food on your plate to pack on a few extra pounds. Remind yourself that those lines formed from all the the laughter you enjoyed over the years with loved ones.