Beyond the Selfie

The Selfie, Get Noticed!

If you are feeling lonely, maybe even invisible, are you hoping to be noticed? These days, many people take to social media to present themselves and their lives in ways for others to “notice.” Images of your life are usually much more than a Selfie! Outrageous pictures in interesting places or with interesting people DO NOT MAKE YOU INTERESTING!

As a side note, the most telling images in a self-portrait may not be pictures of you, but of what you most cherish. These can say a lot about who YOU really are. So pictures or representations of what you find attractive, desirable, interesting, and important can tell a lot about you. (This can be used to attract or affect other people to you or can be a tool to explore yourself.)

So what you “post” in the way of a photo or comment or “sharing” can, and will, say a lot about YOU. Your FB page or Instagram account or your Linkedin profile or whatever social media you use becomes YOU as a person to the world. Yes, you know this but are you vigilant with your outward appearance and what does this persona really say about YOU? I can be snarky and sarcastic. This shows up in my postings. Am I OK with this representation? I had better be prepared to take full responsibility for how I come across, especially to other snarky, sarcastic people. It is telling to realize how much my social media actually says about me, intended AND unintended.

If you attempt to show your good side and your virtues without consciously presenting the real YOU with your foibles, flaws, inadequacies, weaknesses, and imperfections, these will still show up in your selfies and other postings. Remember, you are more than your contrived image which you attempt to portray in real life, or even underneath for “image.” Your real life lurks and will find a way to come to the surface. Like the weeds who grow through the cracks in the pavement. Just the act of taking and then sharing a Selfie says a lot about you. Not the least is that you feel you require attention that may not be coming to you and that you have insecurities below the surface. Selfies are cute and can be fun. But, it is also important to examine your true motivation in posting them.

By the way (BTW,) after you post your selfie, do you become obsessed with the “response?” The “likes” and the “Shares?” Or, the “Comments” which it generates. Does this give you the feeling of self-worth or does it diminish your self-esteem? Does the number of “friends” or “views” make your day or does it frustrate you into even more outrageous behaviors in future postings? Are you living in your selfie and not really liking the existence you have in your “real” life? Consider all possibilities. That is what we are here to learn…

Technology has created a new lifestyle for people who live in our world of technology. (There are luddites who avoid change and new technologies, but we do not hear much from them because they do not use social media…) The “social fabric” of human interacting has changed and we, as a culture, have NOT figured out the etiquette for using social media in the most appropriate, not fad driven, ways. Many of us reading this blog are willing to jump into the “latest” technologies, at least to “try” them out. We do not fully realize the risks, or the full advantages, of participation in internet based social media and how this may effect our future lives (because this is still a vast unknown.) Tread with care AND take responsibility for the experimentation that you do. As stylish as it appears, like a tattoo, it can become a permanent scar you will have to live with ’cause it may never fully go away… (Once it is “Out There” in the “cloud” it can never be fully deleted or reset.)

Even in this personal ranting, as you read between my words, you can learn about ME. But, also remember that what you respond to in this ranting blog also says a great deal about YOU! Enjoy and be bold, but not unconscious, when you take, and then, post your next Selfie.

On another related note… Be careful about what you see and read AND BELIEVE on the internet. People and organizations post their opinion. These are often “Alternative facts” meaning these are not fact checked, honest or REAL! They are pure opinion written and shared as if these were truth. Be careful for every “Truth” the opposite is equally “TRUE!” Sorry, but facts and truths these days are only opinions… Sad, that the loudest liars have large groups of “followers” who do not check on the facts but accept negative opinions as THEIR truth.

Does this sound “snarky” or simply “True?” Take responsibility for what you say, what you read and believe, and how you act on these opinions!!!

Our community, Masters of the Journey, can help support you and your development of consciousness.

Keys to Developing Self-confidence

Self-confidence is related to feelings of self-worth and self-regard. It suggests that a person has confidence in their abilities and how they present themselves to the world and that these abilities are born out of oneself. People who project self-confidence often find it easier to attract success and to gain support for their endeavors. If you have it, you use it. If you do not have “it,” you may desire it.

The keys to developing self-confidence can come from the inside through self-awareness and self-acceptance or you can learn to project it outwardly and do so until it soaks in to your emotional fiber.

One of the accepted self-confidence practices is the “fake it until you make it” behavior. This behavioral technique asks that you project yourself as a self-confident person would and as your external self demonstrates this attitude, your internal self will begin to adopt this external portrayal. To do this, consider dressing well and enhance your appearance as best you can. Many people require coaching advice on how to do this because it does not always come naturally, and can be done incorrectly. This does not have to be financially expensive but does require some coordinated efforts. Project yourself as confident by having good posture, standing up as straight and as tall as you can. Smile warmly and easily. Give sincere compliments and look for the “GOOD” in other people to build them up and do not dwell in the negative. Avoid gossip and negativity. Walk faster and with intention. Make eye contact. Speak up, do not mumble. You do not have to speak fast or talk just for the sake of talking. (Unnecessary talking can sound desperate.) Learn to really listen and respectfully reflect back the understanding, or lack of understanding, that you may have of your communication partner. (Let them finish. Be patient.) Use a firm handshake when you greet people. Demonstrate your positive excitement about learning new things and about life in general. Look for what is good and do not dwell, too much, on what is missing.

Internal self-confidence takes more effort and time. Your motivation to be self-confident will be tested. But a deep core of self-confidence can last a lifetime. To accomplish the ability to dwell in internal self-confidence begins with a demonstration of self-love and self-care. To do this you must put time and effort into taking good care of yourself. You will benefit from regular exercise and stress management. In fact, it is difficult to hold on to your self-confidence without regular demonstrations of self-care. Deep relaxation can also lead to a type of self-control that allows you to control your fears, anxiety, anger, and sadness. You can minimize the fears and maximize your solid emotional foundation through regular stress management practices. Even when you become self-aware of a possible weakness or flaw in yourself, you will better able accept these as lessons rather than be a victim to any of your imperfections. We ALL HAVE IMPERFECTIONS and we must learn and adapt new ways of “being” to help us move past any of these discovered flaws. This is sometimes easier said than done and counseling or coaching may help expedite your process of moving through the insight of any imperfections. “We are perfect because of our imperfections.”

Focus on your strengths, your gifts, your creativity, and your positive contributions. By dwelling on these, you allow the positive light of self-confidence to begin to burn more brightly from your inside, out. And, though difficult, learn to accept and appreciate any sincere compliments that come your way. Build, brick by brick, the feelings of self-worth and self-regard that come from demonstrations of your positive contributions to your family, friends, work, and to the world. Give gifts of yourself freely and without expectations but maintain healthy boundaries (do not emotionally bankrupt yourself.) Find “positive” people to support you. Negative or desperately needy people will drain you if you do set limits, and honor these limits.

Finally, demonstrate gratitude. Self-confident who are healthy will understand that this is a blessing and will find ways to show how grateful they are for feeling their self-confidence.

For coaching support, consider the Stress Education Center at www.dstress.com and please take GOOD care of yourself.

Beauty from the Inside Out

Why do people strive to be “Beautiful?” Everyone has a different definition of what beauty is but the main goal of beauty, or working to be beautiful, is to be attractive to a targeted group of people. Attractiveness can take many forms and an understanding of the desires of the target group can assist you in becoming the most attractive and beautiful person you can be.

In Western culture, beauty can be based on desirable physical attributes. Since primitive humans emerged from the other early species, attractiveness was based on physical attributes that could help ensure the survival of the family. Being strong, a good worker, or a good hunter/gatherer were desirable characteristics and attractive in helping to find the best “mates.” These positive characteristics could be passed along to the next generation with the greater possibility of family survival. In the recent past, physical attributes like height, strength, speed, body types, and financial stability (wealth) have become features to identify for attractiveness. Fashion trends often help people to accentuate their best attributes. Make-up and hair styling has added to the ways in which people will present themselves to be most attractive, to their targeted group.

People engage in body altering behaviors to create increased levels of attractiveness. Weight-loss programs, fitness programs, body art, and cosmetic surgical procedures have become fashionable in attempts to alter natural appearance and become more desirable. In the primitive, “survival of the fittest” mentality, people chase their dream of being someone they were not born to be and often find it leads to a lack of self-esteem and lowered feeling of self-worth.

Beauty often comes from feelings of self-confidence. Some of the most “attractive” people you encounter will not meet the standards that are created by the media. Many very attractive people are not tall, blond, blue-eyed, physically well endowed, and sun tanned Gods or Goddesses. In fact, the most “movie ready” actors or models are often some of the most unsuccessful in finding real life happiness and life satisfaction. (Look at the tabloids who ridicule celebrities for every transgression that our celebrities are unlucky enough to find themselves within.) We often fantasize being like our celebrity idols until we see their lives fall apart due the strain of their celebrity and them getting hauled into court for their misbehaviors.

A more positive alternative for most people is to find a positive way to become attractive. To do this, we must look inside, find our very best attributes, enhance these, and then find ways to display these attributes in the very best ways possible. Attractiveness may be your intelligence, your compassion, your positive energy, your skill of empathy, your ability to communicate, your softness, or your sense of humor. (Though from personal experience, I found that my sense of humor was often used as a defense mechanism when I was feeling vulnerable.) The happiest and most successful people I know are the people who allow their beauty to come from the inside out. The most emotionally healthy people are, by their nature, some of the most attractive people I actually know. Fantasizing about beautiful people is OK but in the long run not as satisfying as having healthy attractive people in your life.

We often settle for something, or someone, less than healthy as we search for attractive partners. When we are young, physical attraction and seductive fashions seem to be desirable traps that we must negotiate. It might be better to understand your deepest needs and requirements in a partner than to “settle” for the first person who gives you a positive response or the first person who meets your physical gratifications.

Beautiful people have to work to maintain their health and self-esteem. They will make time and put their resources into self-care by exercising, eating correctly, getting sleep, and practicing regular stress management. They will often create balance in their lives by including expressions of their creativity, having time for positive, nurturing relationships, and spending time in honoring their spiritual pursuits.

People who have addictions and need to block their own relationships with their own history or past traumas, are often struggling to find the beauty within. The addictions can include: alcohol, drugs, medications, food, sex, smoking, spending/hoarding, gambling, and adrenaline sports or activities. These addictions block the pain or anxiety but do not allow for the inner beauty and self-confidence to shine.

A secret to finding your beauty often involves breaking free from a cultural picture of success and beauty. Find your own definition of a healthy compatible partner. Find your own inner strengths and beauties and demonstrate these. Master self-awareness and self-care. Self-awareness entails knowing and understanding both your strengths and your flaws so well that you can accept any weaknesses as your lessons and then find new ways to live where you will not be a victim to any of these imperfections. Finding self-love and acceptance, which may require support and assistance, will be a useful process that can lead to your long term success and happiness. Getting trapped in other people’s expectations or their visions of beauty may lead down a path of unhappiness.

Please take good care of yourself. Thank you for your time and consideration.

If you require life coaching to assist you in developing your self-awareness and self-care, consider coaching from the Stress Education Center available at www.dstress.com