Are you a lists for everything kind of person? Or more of see-how-you-feel planner?
Not everyone is the setting goals and ticking them off type. Some people like to see where the wind takes them, to ramble rather than to hike, and that’s part of what makes life interesting. But even the most spontaneous of us understands that we’re more likely to get what we want if we set clear goals and then work towards them.
Actually taking steps to get you closer to your goal will almost always get you closer. Thinking about what you want, making intention, and then taking action. We are used to having goals for practical things, the housecleaning, a test passed, a job gained, a meal made on time.
But when it comes to health and beauty (because these are 2 sides of the same coin) we need to take a step back and redefine our goals. Are we chasing after health or beauty, or health and beauty?
Unfortunately if we’re not clear about this, we can be trying to improve our appearance but making our health worse.
We say health is beautiful. And your beauty routines and products should promote good health, not detract from it.
Once upon a time, that was not a radical idea. Once upon a time, we understood that beauty can fade fast but good health is one of the true blessings in life. Maybe it’s still a radical idea for you. Maybe you grew up in a place and time that was beauty sick, collectively suffering delusions of artificial beauty and driving their health into the ground in pursuit of that elusive beast. You can still step away from that into a place where you decide to be yourself, with all your strengths and weaknesses, and without trying to filter yourself into an image that is actually just a mirage.
Every day we get up, wash our face and make a choice about how we’ll talk to ourselves in the mirror, and what we’ll put on our skin and in our bodies. We might not think about that choice as we make it, but we still make it. It is a choice and it’s one that impacts all the other people in our life as well. If we demand unrealistic perfection from ourselves it’s easy to demand that of others as well.
Be kind to yourself. Your skin is awesome because it holds you together, protects your delicate insides, and helps you regulate your temperature. The exact shade, pore size or moisture content of your skin is not what makes you, you. Your smile is a light in someone’s world and your eyes are little miracle workers without which you’d never have seen a sunset, your mother’s smile, or your favourite colour.
Some things we have no control over. Our health and beauty goals are not one of those things. Choose health, healing and being grateful. Reject the beauty-sick obsessions that feed into dis-ease, dissatisfaction and the idea that you are not enough, that you are defined by your pout, your eyes, your skin tone, your wrinkles, your saggy lumpy bumpy bits, your teeth, your ears, your hair, your waistline, your curves or straight lines.
By all means have goals, specific health and beauty goals, just don’t focus so much on some idealised image of beauty that health becomes an optional extra.