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Tag Archives: self-improvement

Twelve Months to a Better Woman: A Month of Self-Giving

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givingI spent January thinking about taking care of myself and February rediscovering who I am. I’m ready to turn my attention away from myself and toward others.  It’s all part of my Twelve Months to a Better Woman project.

In my experience, generosity isn’t nearly so hard as knowing when, where, and what to give. I’m often willing to share my time, resources, or wisdom, but if others don’t need what I have to offer, I’m not really giving them a gift at all. So this month I’ll focus as much on on seeing others’ true needs as on meeting them with a positive attitude and open heart.

You can look forward to posts about giving yourself to your partner, different ways to make giving a habit, and people who have found their own unique ways to give to others. Read the rest of this entry

“On Virtue”

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Allegory of Virtues by Antonio da Correggio

Sometimes the virtues we strive for seem like they are impossibly out of reach. No matter how hard we try to make ourselves patient, wise, or forbearing, we constantly fall short of our expectations.

Part of self-reflection is learning to know our own short-comings. To recognize the things that try our patience the most. To predict the times our tempers are likely to flare.

But knowing that we are flawed doesn’t excuse us from trying to be better. Virtue is closer and more attainable than we might think. Phillis Wheatley, a black slave and the first African-American woman to publish a book, writes a beautiful allegory about just how easy virtue is to find for those that go looking for it.

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Twelve Months to a Better Woman: A Month of Self-Care

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A Month of Self-CareAs far as I know, I was the only teenage girl to ever be sent to her room to “take off some of those clothes” and “put on a little more make-up, young lady.” Unwanted attention from boys and a desire to be modest drove me to feel deeply uncomfortable with my body. I hated the way I looked and kept as much skin covered as possible all the way through high school and college.

Then, a beautiful, Italian co-worker changed my life. After I complimented her clothes for many weeks, she finally turned to me and said, “You know, you are as beautiful as I am. Your body is a gift. You should treat it that way.”

And that’s true of all of us. Our bodies are a gift that we should both take care of and present beautifully to the world. Read the rest of this entry

Twelve Months to a Better Woman

Catching a Dream by Charles Lennox WrightMany of you know that I was diagnosed with post-partum depression late last summer. But as I’ve delved into my past with my therapist, I’ve discovered that depression has been a part of my life much longer than I thought.

I didn’t know that depression contributed to the mood swings that made me feel unlovable. I didn’t know that depression distorted my reflection into something deeply unattractive. And I didn’t know that depression made me truly believe that I didn’t deserve anything nice.

With things finally looking up for me, I’m ready for a change. I’m ready to accept the love of friends and family. I’m ready to feel beautiful. And, at twenty-seven years old, I’m finally ready to treat myself right. Read the rest of this entry