Beauty

How to Learn to Love Yourself & Stop Seeking Validation from Others

April 19, 2017

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I want to let you in on a little secret… I worry a lot about whether or not people value or like me.

It’s something we all struggle with, but only more recently have I identified this exhausting cycle of looking to others to validate my worth. For so long I craved to get good grades so that my teachers and parents would be proud of me and therefore I would be a “good little girl.” Then it became career successes and acquiring as many internships + jobs as possible within my field so as to impress future employers. The end result? A not so minor set of panic attacks when life didn’t go as planned, as well as a crushing blow to my self-confidence and sense of self.

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Where does one go from here you may ask. Well, there’s only one way to end the cycle: Learn to validate yourself. Learn to give yourself the attention, approval, love, and acceptance you seek from others.

I have to tell you it’s not easy. Validating yourself is not just a matter of looking in the mirror and telling yourself that you are a wonderful, beautiful child of God. It’s not just a matter of telling yourself throughout the day that you are enough. It takes great practice and also more than anything else, a changed mindset.

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To begin with, the first step to self-validation is learning to access the truth of who you are from your higher minded, spiritual self. The term spiritual may make some uneasy, but by this, I mean feeling connected to an energy far greater than yourself and working with the Universe to understand it’s meaning.

It’s only when the truth of who you are comes through you that you’ll begin to believe it. Hearing the truth from your higher self isn’t as hard as you may think. When your sincere intention is to learn the truth, you will begin to feel it. Ask the Universe to reveal to you your soul’s essence and so long as you are open to the possibility of a miracle, the Universe will present you with one.

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The second step to self-validation is in the way you treat yourself. For it is your thoughts that become your reality, and negative thoughts can make for a negative reality. It doesn’t matter how many lovely things your higher self tells you about who you are. You have to stop judging yourself and abandoning yourself in numerous other ways to internalize that truth. Ignoring your feelings, numbing your feelings with addictions, and making others responsible for your worth will trap you in feelings of unworthiness.

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I know for me one of my greatest struggles has been my addiction to being busy/productive. For me, I often look to career success and financial security to feel worthy. I have felt like I’m nothing without my career. For instance, these past couple months not having a solid 9 to 5 with a lofty title (and pay) made me really anxious. I kept thinking about how after getting my graduate degree I was failing by not being a marketing coordinator at some fashion company. I kept seeing myself as being derailed from my dreams, rather than see that a detour happened to show me many unforeseen life lessons.

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Together we need to practice treating ourselves as cherished beings worthy of all the love the Universe has to offer. The more we learn to love, see, and validate ourselves, the more validation we’ll ultimately find in others. When you treat yourself in unloving ways, you invite others to do the same. When you learn to love and validate yourself, the energy you project tells others you are worthy of being loved and validated.

Life will only change for the better when you learn to love and validate yourself. Why not choose to begin the journey of finding love from within starting right now? Close your eyes. Ask the Universe, God, or whatever you want to call it to help you. Remember that true happiness can never be found in another person, or what it is you do for work, or how many friends you have, but rather your connection to it all. Whatever you do, choose love.

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Photography by Lauren Hebert

LOVE,

Blog-Signature-Hannah

Spotlight Series: Mother & Daughter Style

April 2, 2017

There’s something to be said about the phrase “I got it from my mama.” As a daughter of a strong, caring, and vibrant lady, my mother has always had a strong influence in my life. Although I’m not a mother yet myself, I so enjoy learning about motherhood from my dear friends who are. That is why today I’m sharing with you a very special look into the important role a mother plays in her daughter’s life with the example of my friend Kristina. I’ve only known Kristina for a short while, but we’ve become quite close over these past few months. Of all Kristina’s wonderful qualities, her passion for motherhood was so infectious and pure that it truly stood out to me. I quickly realized that I had a lot to learn from her in many areas of life. Today she and her daughter, Alexandria graciously join me on the blog to share their story of being mother & daughter and how that relationship impacts both their overall body image and relationship with fashion. –Hannahfashionistamomdaughter What did you learn about yourself through this experience of taking photos and writing for the blog? We really enjoyed embracing who we were throughout this experience.  Our thoughts as mother and daughter come from a relationship fostered in embracing individuality and loving every bit of who we are.  Knowing yourself, and identifying your inner being, is something that I believe as a mother is crucial in teaching my daughter to love who she is, and be comfortable with the things that take her away from what society dictates.  Through this experience, I was able to just let her be, pick out the wardrobe that suited her needs, and made her most comfortable in front of the camera.

A mother-daughter relationship is incredibly important to nurture and strengthen throughout life, not just in the moment, or when your child declares they need you.  To me, they always need, you, whether they realize it or not.  Life gets busy, and the daily to-do list often becomes stressful and tiring, however, remembering to laugh, respect each other, and listen, are what remind us to not lose sight of the relationship at the core of craziness.

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What new thoughts do you have about each of your futures? I am not sure if either of us has new thoughts about the future, more like, thoughts that continue to evolve and change as we grow together as mother and daughter.  Alex has a bright future, she’s a hard worker, open minded, free in spirit, yet surprisingly grounded at her age.  Most importantly, she is very comfortable with who she is and does not fall into peer related pressures.  At this age, peer groups can already be difficult, however, she remains true to herself, and helps all of her friends to get along.  My fierce, but gentle peace keeper!

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What have you learned about your mother from becoming a mother?  Ha!  That she was right!  On a serious note, she gave me a great sense of self.  I was empowered to be me, to like me, to accept me, and not change for others.  This is something I have carried into my life as and adult, and as a mother.  She was firm, and offered tough love when needed, always holding her ground.  Never wavering in her love for me, and belief in me.  My situation is and was unique, in that my parents could not have children, and chose to adopt me.  It has been a beautiful and special relationship from the beginning, one that I am truly blessed to have.  I still strive to be half as good as she, and to apply some of her parenting with my soul mixed in. So far, so good!

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What’s your best hope for your daughter based on what you know about fashion, style, body image, and overall identity? I hope for Alex to identify with herself on all levels, not try to fit into any societal mold, but to just be.  When you are a confident woman, stand tall, and find a style that is all your own, you become free from body image struggles, and insecurities.  It is amazing how it just sets you free.  A confident woman, a woman who knows who she is, and does not stray from the very nature of her soul, is a woman who is sexy.  It is never about the look…..it is all about the being. 

What worries you given the complexities your daughter faces, as she grows older? I worry about her education, her relationships with other women and her intimate relationships as well.  I want her to understand that she needs her own path in life, not a path that suits others needs, but her own.  I want her to understand that life is beautiful, full of wonder, and can take you to so many places.  I hope she never limits herself but continues to push herself to be a better human and to have a great love of humanity.  With the way, the world is at this time, and the hate that still exists, I hope I can raise a compassionate woman, who respects differences, faiths of all kinds, and the beautiful colors that make up humanity.  I hope that she will impact people on some level, and empower others to be the best version of themselves they can be.

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What are your thoughts as to how you can better prepare and equip her to face social pressures and other influences?There will always be social pressures, and negative influences, but with a solid foundation, and a strong sense of self, I believe she will be prepared to ward off such influences.

What are your thoughts about how fashion has impacted your previous as well as present life? I have always loved my sense of style, one that in ingrained in comfort and as I like to call it, sass!  I dress in what makes me comfortable and feel pretty, not in what others think I should wear.  Don’t get me wrong, I love to follow the latest trends, but I chose what I like, what will fit my body type, and what will make me smile.  I have never been one to wear something just because a magazine says I should.

How has becoming a mother impacted and influenced your own present view on identity and fashion? As a mother, I have always enjoyed purchasing clothing for the kids and myself as well as my husband.  I often look at the latest trends and then choose according to their likes and dislikes.  I guess I choose based on my own way of thinking about style, that it can be your own.  I have never wanted them to think about fashion as something that rules them, to me that is simply not healthy.  Clothing should be an accessory to your soul, that’s what makes it work per individual.

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Alexandria, what defines beauty in your mind? Being a good person, helping people, and not falling in a pattern that your friends think you should follow.  I am ok with me, and I think that is beautiful.

How does what you wear impact how you see yourself? I like to be comfortable, and I love miss matched socks!  I like it, and it’s funny, and I guess I see myself as funny. Yup, I am kind of a funny girl!  If I am comfortable, then that makes me comfortable at school too. Mom says, stand tall and be you, so I do!

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What are some ways that your mother influences your style and view of yourself? Mom sometimes gets tired of me wearing some of the same things often, but she knows they are my favorites, so she always lets me.  My mom says I can just be me, and pick out things that represent me, not the kid next to me.  And I am like, well yeah, why would I dress for someone else?  My mom always looks nice, but I like to tease her.  Mom said that I am a girl that is beautiful from the inside first, the outside is part of your inside….a reflection of who you are as a girl and person.  So I say to myself, just be you, Alex!

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Thinking about fashion and identity, what advice do you have for your friends? My friends are often focused on name brands, to the point that they make sure to comment when someone has something they want and don’t have or have that is not name brand.  I don’t think it is okay to make fun of someone who does not have a name brand item on, that’s just not cool.  Why? Because, what does it even matter anyway?!  I say be comfortable, and it isn’t your business what other people wear or do, cause they are not you.

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What do you like to wear and why? I love leggings, miss matched socks, and comfy shirts.  Leggings are soft, and I love leggings with patterns because they are fun.  Sometimes I wear fun heels or dressy boots, but I am usually a sneaker girl.  I love Under Armour sneakers, cause they are really comfy for my feet all day.  I like dressed sometimes, but nothing poofy!  Less is more I say.

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LOVE,

Blog-Signature-Hannah

Kristina & Alexandria

Plant Makeup

June 27, 2016

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Every organic thing is planted for the future. But for a plant to reach the future, it must grow in two opposite directions at the same time. As the roots grow downward into the dark, into the depths, the plant’s limbs reach for the light and grow upward. Birth and rootedness take place in cave-dark spaces, from which grow the upward, outward expression. No darkness, no light. No dirt, no daybreak. No past, no future.
Leonard Sweet, The Well-Played Life

 

13548822_10157039993540207_631272823_o13569882_10157039994060207_1517906864_oMore and more the woods have been whispering my name softly; beckoning me to make a peaceful surrender. As I face yet again a very transitional time in my life, I can’t help but feel emotionally imbalanced and in a constant state of rumination around meeting my basic survival needs. When I get in this thought spiral it takes away my ability to connect with others and feel the love that is around me. One of the ways I’ve been trying to balance my root chakra and connect with the Earth has been to interact with plants, specifically flowers. I’ve been using herbal remedies to aid with my anxiety and I’ve also found ways to incorporate them into my beauty routine.

I recently learned about an amazing line called, “Plant Makeup” that is 100% plant-based. All the products are homemade by this amazing girl named Jes, and all the ingredients are local or organic + sustainably sourced. 13523925_10157039989285207_969952079_o13523922_10157039993455207_509626183_oJes graciously gifted us the Spring/Summer 2016 Collection and I have to say both my outer and inner person has been really digging it! I love the way the products feel on my skin and inside I feel a strong bond with nature. Finally a makeup company that promotes natural beauty and supports a healthy relationship + respect for nature. It just goes to show you that fashion and living a mindful lifestyle can go hand-in-hand. 13517749_10157039989510207_1582975423_o13556098_10157039994860207_178024861_o13549128_10157039991945207_2018738747_o13523892_10157039992375207_541843491_oPhotography by Chelsea Blood

LOVE,

Blog-Signature-Hannah

Part Two: The Perfect Loose Curls

September 18, 2015

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Happy Friday! In part one of this post, Audrey showed us how to do a quick & easy braid updo. Today she is going to show us how to achieve the perfect loose curls. I myself have never been that great at using a curling iron (I prefer the wand), but after some practice it’s definitely possible. Depending on your length of hair, curls can be the perfect way to transform your look. Loose curls especially are great because they always look effortless.

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Starting around the face, use a 1¼- inch curling iron to create waves in two inch sections. Be sure to twirl the hair away from your face. Hold the iron vertically, with the top just above ear level. Clip the completed front sections out of the way and curl the back half of the hair. 

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Some great ways to hold the curls in place and add a nice shine is to mist finishing spray or hairspray from 8 to 10 inches away from the hair.

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Once all of the waves have cooled, gently comb through them with your fingers.

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Ta-da!

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If you live in Maine or are visiting, you have to check out Escada Hair Studio. I know it may come across as biased, but it really is in my opinion the best salon in the Lewiston/Auburn area. Not only are the hair stylists extraordinarily talented and educated in the newest trends, but the salon itself is so wonderful to be in. The clean, bright look and teal color palette gives the space a modern and upscale feel.

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So many colors to choose from!!

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 Thank you so much Audrey for your contribution to this post! 

If you live in the Lewiston/Auburn area you should really check out Escada Hair Studio! To thank our local Maine readers, Audrey and I wanted to give away a free hair styling to one lucky winner. To enter follow both Audrey and The Fashion Cookbook’s social media channels and leave a comment to this blog post. We’d love to hear your feedback and look forward to more fabulous collaborations in the future! ♥

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LOVE,

Blog-Signature-Hannah

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