Believing

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“Anyone can tell a woman she is beautiful. Making her believe it? There is where the genius lies.” Said by Aramis in The Musketeers. That resonated with me and I have been turning it around in my mind for a few days.

How do you feel about yourself right now?

Tell me about a time someone made you feel beautiful.

Tell me about a time you made someone else feel beautiful. How did you do it!

What makes someone beautiful to you?

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141 thoughts on “Believing

  1. I see the fingerprint of God in everyone, so it’s easy for me to see someone as beautiful in a way that transcends any particular convention of attractiveness.

    For me, I have rarely, if ever, felt beautiful. And if I did get to a point where I felt beautiful, I had precisely (checks watch) about 3 weeks to enjoy it before I got pregnant. Without fail.

    Anyway, I have finally gotten to a point where I feel beautiful not because of what I think I look like, but because I have been working out and really challenging my body. I feel like a badass, and in my mind, badass = beautiful.

    That’s a standard that’s attainable for me.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. “Mam!” came the little voice from the front pew of the church, “That’s our Susie!” I could hear my mother shushing my three year old brother. “Our Susie’s pretty!”
    For once, I believed. I walked down the aisle, far too young, but no longer nervous, while my wedding guests laughed quietly.

    Liked by 9 people

  3. Heh. Well I have daughters, so mostly I hear about how not beautiful they feel while we stare at them like the lunatics they are. They are too skinny, too tall, too short, their thighs too muscular, their skin too white, too pimply, their hairs too curly, too thick, their knees too knobby, their feet too wide, their ears too big — just ask them, lol! The three of them sit around and compare. The baby is winning the beautiful contest, but she’d give it all up to have the eldest’s hair color.
    My husband surely tells me I’m beautiful several times a week, but I shrug it off — jeans, tee-shirt, no bra, no make up, hair in a pony…BUT when he looks at me just so, I feeeeeeel beautiful, even if he doesn’t say anything. I believe in his eyes a lot more than his words.
    I often think the essence of people is beautiful. Like some intangible source emanates beauty. The soul, perhaps.

    Liked by 9 people

  4. I rarely feeL beautiful now I am older. in fact I don’t think I ever did when I was younger either! Beauty is not just the physical look of someone, it is how they present themselves, their kindness amd compassion towards others.

    Liked by 6 people

  5. From time to time you have someone who fancies you and it might even be a stranger . When you find out you are a bit more than flattered. I have had that, though I wish more and in the case of ladies that ages, all ages, have beauties untold.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, what is the eye? Beauty is one of those things we cannot define and only recognise when it hits us. Even so the memory can linger forever.

    There is something about the expression of a genuine smile and expression of joy. In that instant masks disappear and a vulnerable personality shines through. My intuition tells me that vulnerability makes even the most unlikely thing beautiful in a way. I cannot explain why though.

    Liked by 3 people

      • My last comment sounded a bit preachy – and it wasn’t intended that way. I’m not talking about religion or praying or studying scriptures – I’m talking about somehow knowing that there is a point to life, that there is a higher organizing intelligence, and knowing that each one of us is special and unique and loved, regardless of what happens in life. I came across this when I was about 14. I was working in a commercial bakery loading trailers one day when an older driver – Bill Bowlby- came up to say hello and check how i was doing as i was loading his trailer.. I had known Bill in passing for a few years and he was a quiet man who farmed for a living when he wasn’t driving – he lived in the valley of Nova Scotia. He always had a smile for everyone and when he listened to someone speak, it was as if he was hanging on every word – you had his full attention, I had gotten a new watch and was wearing it as i worked. Bill noticed, of course, and asked if he could see it. He took my arm in his hands and studied the watch as if it were the most amazing thing he had ever seen. A peace filled me and all was right with the world. It was the most amazing feeling I have ever had, bar none. There was no doubt in my mind that this man knew what “good” was (no relation to the watch). Then he let go and smiled and i went back to normal. That was 43 years ago and the moment is as bright in my mind as if it just happened. There was no physical attraction (I am solidly hetero) or worship or any other influence. That man knew what we were doing here although i doubt very much if he could or would put it into words.He would DO what was right – always. That is what i meant by getting close to God: being like Bill Bowlby. Epilogue: I only saw Bill a couple of times more over the next few months and then one day I came to work and was given the sad news that he had been plowing a field on the side of a hill and his tractor had turned over on him and he had died.

        Liked by 4 people

  7. Have you seen the Dove video? Where they had two doors beautiful and average. Check it out! Fits well with this.
    Personally, until about two years back I would always place myself in the heh category. Now, I feel so much better about myself. Confident. Not perfect but damn good.

    Liked by 4 people

    • I did watch the video. I felt like I would have a hard time walking through the beautiful door. I would want someone to take my hand and pull me through it. Interesting how I depend on others for my self worth…

      Liked by 3 people

      • We watched that video together, Victo dear. I’m not convinced that we depend on others for our self worth as much as for feedback as to who we really are. I know you are beautiful both inside and out because of your love and generosity! I don’t even think we need to feel or believe we’re beautiful as much as we want to behave in ways that share beauty with the world, our unique beauty. So, if you are behaving beautifully (which you and I are) and we have a few people in our lives who see our beauty (which we do) then we’re beautiful! RE: http://familylovedoesmore.com/2015/04/09/three-reasons-to-choosebeautiful-video-brave/

        Liked by 2 people

      • You’ve hosted a beautiful discussion here and I’ve gleaned much from it. Like you I’ve been mulling the topic of beauty over too. After reading the comments here, I lean heavily toward there being a seasonal aspect to this. I just think it was really hard to feel beautiful during certain seasons of my life. Or maybe it was more that I was gathering a piece of my “beauty puzzle” together at each stage. I think about how beautiful my little kids thought I was and how I touched by their sweetness. I know I missed some puzzle pieces, there were seasons that should have fed me with love and confidence, but did just the opposite. For me, it took time to collect the pieces but, finally, I’ve got them. Now it’s up to me to enjoy the truth of my existence, even on days when I don’t feel beautiful. Objectively I am because I love and am loved.

        Liked by 3 people

      • There is certainly something to be said for how age matures and refines us. I wish I could impart some of what I now understand to my younger self. I am eager to learn what another decade will teach me about love and beauty. You are very wise, my friend, and I am honored to know you here. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  8. This is a big one around our house right now …as my daughter gets closer to turning 9 and I’m starting to think about how to have those conversations with her about her changing body. I think the biggest issue for me is making sure, during this time of change in her life, that she feels absolutely beautiful and perfect and to try to protect her from the media and the images all around us the trying to tell her she’s not.

    Liked by 4 people

  9. 1. tired and aware that I look like a piece of sh**
    2. my wedding, I’m still convinced I was beautiful that day. Who made me feel beautiful? Hairdressers, bridesmaids bla bla, like ten people around me hahaha
    3. I love to make my sister believe she’s adorable, especially when she’s in a bad mood or sad or hurt. I do it this way: when she gets dressed up I just PRETEND to get dressed up and my intention is to choose the ugliest clothes I have. Of course she gets all the compliments when we’re outside then. It’s really easy.
    4. I’m picky. I like natural beauty and inner beauty and just if both of them are present I’ll think one is beautiful – and this is really rare. So most people are really ugly in my opinion hahaha

    Liked by 4 people

  10. I was afraid you were going “there” when I read the title in my email. I have so many thoughts on this I may just have to write a post about it. Or a few. Do you have a word limit in comments? 5000, 10K? ๐Ÿ˜€

    A few short remarks: While I am concerned about how superficial we are with “our” girl children, putting so much stress on appearance (it has ALWAYS been so, but it seems to go in waves), I would like to see girls routinely praised for things other than beauty. HOWEVER, I caught the opposite end of the thing when I was growing up…and it has caused lasting damage to me in so many ways.

    No one has ever made me feel beautiful, but someone who came close ended up being a horrible person in my life and so it compounded the problem.

    Right now I do not feel beautiful. Age (another fly in the ointment), depression, poverty and injury has caused my appearance to go to hell and my weight to sky-rocket. I look like Jabba in drag.

    I don’t know if I have ever made someone feel beautiful. I hope so. I know lots of beautiful people.

    I’m as superficial as the rest of them. I like to look at pretty people, but honestly, if someone is wonderful inside (and my definition of that probably varies from other people’s), their attractiveness is automatic. Gah, that was disgustingly political correct…

    Liked by 3 people

      • A term I really despise: Morbid obesity. Huge. Somewhere under the fat I’m probably ok for a 56 yr old if you’re talking physicality. I have no illusions at this point but get very sad/angry/depressed when I look back on the attractive me I was and how I was practically systematically convinced otherwise. My life would have been a lot different with a relatively small amount of words and actions on the part of others during my formative years.

        Liked by 2 people

  11. My post today tells you how I feel today, the last time I hope I made some one feel beautiful was my friend Karen, three years ago when she was dying of cancer, I sat by her for hours and I talked her through a picnic by the sea. I hope I have done so since but that is what sticks in my mind! xx

    Liked by 4 people

  12. Suffice it to say..I did not peak too soon. Grossly underweight, very self conscious of body hair and heavy eyebrows ( pre-Brooke Shields), menses and development delayed till 18, I was focused on the brain. The beauty tag was left to my 3 sisters, I was to be the smart one. I filled out in college, and tried to make up for lost time. (You really can’t) .My husband has always been the best in giving compliments. I keep him around. โ˜บ Van

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  13. Beauty comes from within in how you treat people with kindness, understanding and gentleness. Our outward appearance is strictly packaging that gets pushed and pulled through the wringer of life. Those changes are not in our control; the rest is. โค Kindly treated people glow and feel special. That makes them beautiful.

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  14. Pingback: Random Thought Tuesday, May 5 | Still Life with Grad Student

  15. Beauty is so subjective and could encompass traits both inside and out, as some of the other commenters already stated.
    Having said that I feel beautiful physically *most* of the time overall but I have moments where I’m too critical of something that makes me self-conscious.

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      • This is something that I have tons to say about (and drafts started on, haha).
        I struggle with body dysmorphic disorder and disordered eating. I was also never confident about my looks growing up so this is a tricky one.
        All other clinical factors aside, society places so much emphasis on what’s physically attractive that it’s impossible for “regular” people to reach that ideal so we start doubting ourselves instead of accepting.
        Like I said, most of the time I feel beautiful but that doesn’t stop me from freaking out about spider veins or cellulite or wrinkles.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you, and I don’t think you’ve ever posted any photos of yourself but from your writing I can say that you’re beautiful inside. And outside too, even if you’ve got six heads. Just work those six heads like a rock star.

        Liked by 1 person

  16. I know you wrote this with the ladies in mind, but men also wrestle with this issue..I’ve never desired to be”beautiful” (physically, but I did (and still do) desire to be physically attractive. I’ve had more than one man in a moment of honest vulnerability tell me they secretly thought they were “ugly” and wanted my perspective.
    I did not grow up thinking I was physically attractive, but later in life, more than one person told me I looked a lot like patrick swayze in my early 20’s. Wish someone would have told me that back then ๐Ÿ™‚ Beauty definitely radiates from our eyes, and who we are in our inner person. A person can be drop dead gorgeous on the exterior but a bitch on the outside, and “beautiful” is not one of the words that comes to my mind when I meet them if they are a bitch.
    Our inner thoughts about ourselves are deeply grooved thought patterns (that can be changed) it is not a simple fix, but it is possible. Exterior beauty is such an illusion, and the older we get the more we are forced to deal with it. I loved this post!

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  17. Question: How do you feel about yourself right now?

    Answer: I feel good about myself. I feel as if Iโ€™m making progress in my therapy and with my blog.

    Question: Tell me about a time someone made you feel beautiful.

    Answer: What comes to mind when I think of a time that made me feel beautiful is the client who had three difficult stays in the mental health facility that I managed. She left after her third stay and came back twelve months later to show me that she had begun to turn her life around.

    She had entered a community college to get a teaching certificate. She said that my faith and the faith of my staff in her ability to recover inspired her.

    I think that faith in her and her response to it made me feel beautiful.

    Question: Tell me about a time you made someone else feel beautiful. How did you do it?

    Answer: I honestly cannot recall a time when I made someone else feel beautiful. I almost never think of beauty as a physical attribute. Some of the least beautiful people Iโ€™ve ever seen grace the covers of People Magazine and Vanity Fair.

    Question: What makes someone beautiful to you?

    Answer: Everything that made Maya Angelou stunningly beautiful until the day she died.

    Liked by 4 people

  18. So funny. I do not categorize beauty as the container but the product in the container or vessel as I prefer. I think the most “ugly” people are the ones who are so selfish and self centered that the vessel becomes tarnished. The most beautiful ones to me are the people who eyes glow with the inner light of love and joy, whose energy emits the brightest, most gorgeous aura. For example Doc…I have never seen you, but I know your beauty is beyond measure. I “hear” your beauty in your words and what you bring to this world. There are some but not enough people like you.
    I don’t think about beauty until someone mentions size. Then I get all worked up. Some people get really nasty about “fat” people and to me, the ugliness they demonstrate with their judgments and critiques makes them uglier by far than anyone. If it weren’t for my health I could give a rat’s ass about my weight and how someone thinks I look. I don’t give a crap how fat someone is either. I LIKE big people. I prefer them to skinny bitches….. or skinny scrawny dudes.
    I don’t think about myself until the conversation comes around to physical appearance. My first reaction is always one of self loathing, put there by my family. I strive very hard to get past that. I will drop out of a conversation now instead of becoming self-deprecating like most women do. I smile inwardly and try to be gracious when someone utters as in shock, “wow, you look beautiful.”….. I can wear the same outfit and the only thing I add is my smile. When I smile, I smile right from my heart. I am beautiful as all people are who smile honestly.
    I try to always be sincere with my comments. I will be brutally honest if asked. My favorite thing to do is find something to say to someone unexpectantly about them, whether it is their appearance (rarely) or how wonderful and amazing they are. You can make someone’s day (and yourself) by just finding one thing to love and share about them. It is a great habit to practice to find the bright spot in everyone and then tell them.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for your kind words about me. I feel the same about you. I have no doubt how much you care about people. I try to complement like you do, too, though I admit that I do it more to patients than anyone else and I probably need to work on doing that with everyone. We had a meeting about our PCMH recert today and I did not have much fun. I should have started off with a complement to the visitor to set her more at ease. Hmmm…

      Liked by 1 person

  19. My husband makes me feel beautiful every single day, through verbal and non-verbal communication. He treats me with respect and love, and although I doubt his objectivity at times, I am grateful and boosted by his attention.

    I try to tell compliment people around me all the time, for actual things I notice, whether its physical or emotional. It makes everyone feel good, and it is deserved. I love it when my comments catch people off guard, and they smile that appreciative smile. That makes my day.

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  20. One of our wedding songs was Beautiful by Gordon Lightfoot and I think that day I actually believed it. Not to bring the mood down, but I don’t remember the last time I heard or felt those words. I try to give sincere compliments all the time if I truly see beauty around me, not just physically, but in other ways as well, but it has to be sincere. None of that phony crap or those emotionless ‘someone said something nice about me so I am obligated to return the sentiment’ things.

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    • Let me say, then, that you are beautiful!!! That comes through in your writing. Funny thing, I often worry in the clinical setting if a patient complements me first that when I follow with something nice about them that they will think I am being insincere even though I am really not. “I like your hair, Doc!” Dang. I was going to complement on their hair, too, but now I can’t because that will sound fake. When I am left scrambling for something different sometimes that does end up sounding awkward.

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  21. I use the word beautiful freely, in reference to appearance and behavior. I never lie when I use. I think that’s why people smile when I say it. And I think that’s why if anyone says it to me….I smile.

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  22. I am the worst of the worst when it comes to receiving a compliment and I have been working on that one but it’s a tough one. It is so much easier for me to see the beauty in other people including the ones who don’t fit into society’s definition. Some people just have big hearts and that shines brighter than botox, etc. ever could. When it comes to me,most of the time I am happy with myself and then I pass a store window and see my reflection and remember that I’m not that skinny girl anymore. Some days are harder than others but boy oh boy….vanity is a bitch!

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    • I hate reflections in glass doors. Sure fire way to kill my beauty buzz if I happen to have one. I am also terrible at receiving compliments. They make me very uncomfortable. Why? Why is it so hard? Is it just that we are overly critical? Is it a fear of becoming prideful? Something else? I wish I understood.

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  23. Your questions actually run right alongside the ones I was going to ask soon (if I can only get some ME-TIME!!). I didn’t expect my series on beauty to stall as it has. Too busy, this side of the screen. So…you didn’t tell us in the post…when did yOu feel beautiful?

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      • Music. Dressing up. Good food. No kids. I know, no kids making me feel beautiful is contrary to my earlier statement. It is a different kind of beautiful without them around.

        Like

      • “Music. Dressing up. Good food.” That is cool. At first I thought of the men who have wooed me who have made me feel beautiful, although I know they had taken to who I was more than what I looked like, and this one clunked me like Newton’s Apple just now: you all have made me feel very beautiful (by your comments). I think that is largely why I feel so alive on the Holistic Journey. Great discussion. And I’m friggin’ jealous. If I could wear my blog like you, I could grow a lot faster!! (Not very beautiful of me. LOL.)

        Liked by 1 person

      • Eh, I didn’t know what I was doing in my earliest days, unlike you. Just wrote like I was drunk. LOL. And you are doing one hec of a job w/ the discussions. Besides, you will catch up in your grand time, w/ that finger glued to your blog. LOL. I’ll be here to shake your hand when you do. I want everyone (esp my loyal supporters) to do well.

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      • LOL! You think I know what I am doing. I had no clue whatsoever for the first 6-7 months. I have a better grasp now but I am still just a tiny player, not willing to invest the time required to do much more than this. It is a hobby. I don’t want to lose myself to it. Thank you so much for your kind words! They mean a lot coming from you. ๐Ÿ™‚

        Like

  24. I have never felt (or believed) that I am beautiful. I always feel very “plain Jane.” But then again, I’ve never been one to care much about how I look – I never really style my hair or wear make up or fuss much over what I wear. I wouldn’t say that makes me happy, because I often feel “inadequate next to someone who does all those things. But, i just never seemed to get into it. Maybe that’s the real reason I picked a profession that involves scrubs and surgical caps…

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  25. Ze French! Ze make too complaix a thing that should just be done, yes? ๐Ÿ˜€

    What makes a woman beautiful to me? Any woman in get element, being where she belongs and doing what she wants to do and is meant to do. Sounds rather vague, doesn’t it? As an example, I was a Steffi Graf can, but I didn’t find her attractive in her interviews or in pictures where she was dressed in gowns. To me she was attractive on a tennis field, in uniform, wiping sweat off her brow, tired but oh so focused! She owned that tennis court and everyone knew it, that’s what made her attractive to me.
    Wonder why I rambled on like that here?….

    Liked by 1 person

  26. When you know someone really well you don’t actually see what other people see, you see who they are, and that makes them beautiful. I don’t need to be told I’m beautiful (I would never believe it anyway), just show me by your actions that you value our connection.

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  27. Well, the hubs tells me I’m beautiful all the time. But what really makes me feel beautiful is a sense of accomplishment. It can be anything from learning something new to doing a hundred squats. I really love to build things. So anything like that gives me confidence and I think confidence makes me feel beautiful.

    I can’t find it now, but I liked what someone else said in the comments I read yesterday. Something about badass=beautiful. I feel beautiful when I feel fierce!

    Liked by 1 person

      • I will text her something silly, and tell her I miss her face. Later, when I see her, I will tell her I like the color of what she is wearing, and how it makes her smile bright. I will hold her hand and take a walk with her, and I will mention that she is beautiful, and that I have thought it many times lately, but left it unsaid for no good reason.

        I don’t know if it will work, but I think I will make a habit of it, so perhaps it will be easier to believe.

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  28. Pingback: My Article Read (5-5-2015) (5-6-2015) | My Daily Musing

  29. How do I feel about me? That’s a loaded question at any given time. I’ve always judged myself harshly, and never much like myself. How do I judge someone else’s beauty? the older I get, the more I look past their outsides, and look to their heart and soul to find their beauty. But I can’t seem to do with with myself. Go figure. Now, you…. YOU are a truly gorgeous soul. โค

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