Who decides beauty?

Sedruola Maruskaj Blog

I was having a conversation with my sister that turned to beauty. We were talking about marriage and anniversaries and how long some of our cousins have been married. We’re a huge supportive clan so we’ve all been to almost all our family weddings.

Anyway, my sister lamented that she looked “so bad” at our aunt’s wedding, but she just knew she was beautiful back then. “Why didn’t anyone ever tell me about my mustache or unibrow? How did I feel so beautiful?”

I didn’t think long before saying “we told each other we were beautiful so that’s what we all took into the world. We didn’t see your mustache or unibrow as ‘ugly’ we saw them as you.”

Who decides?

The more I’ve thought about that question the more I wonder, who decides what beauty is? Who decides that a woman with a mustache is less desirable than one without?

Did we lie or mislead her?

Mommy, Can I Change My Color?

Who decides whether we did or didn’t? I’m not sure. What I’m sure of is we were sincere in our praise of each other. We loved each other unconditionally and saw our beauty beyond the norms.

I was 95 lbs. until I was 34. That made me self-conscious because I didn’t feel I was beautiful at that size. I didn’t wear bikinis or show my arms. No one told me I wasn’t beautiful, but those I was around had curves I wanted.

My family always told me I was beautiful so I never truly doubted it, but there were counter messages that got through anyway.

At some point, someone in advertising decided what the “ideal” look would be. They took parts of ethnic women and created an ideal that has been etched into our minds. If we don’t feel we fit into that ideal, we think something needs to be changed. But does it really?

No changes necessary

No.

Beauty isn’t a product of what you look like on the outside, it’s a compilation of inner and outer beauty. I’ve seen men and women turned off by beautiful people because their beauty was skin deep. Then I’ve seen those men and women turned on by someone who would never fit the “ideal” because they glowed.

Scars To Your Beautiful

The next time you’re looking at yourself and thinking “I need to change. . . ” stop that thought. Think about your spirit. Think about your aura and consider if that’s what needs changing rather than your outer appearance.

Take it from a woman who walks around with and without breasts . . . no one cares how you look, they only care about who you are. Your person is what they respond to.

“Those who care, don’t matter and those who matter, don’t care.”

You are enough. You are beautiful. You decide, remember that!


Are you indulging in premeditated stress?

Sedruola Maruska | Leisure Life Coach

You’re driving. A car on the right looks like it’s about to cut you off. . . .

You’re in line at an amusement park. A woman and her child look like they’re about to jump the line to join the rest of their family. . . .

You heard your friend say something rude about you. . . .

I’ll bet you started thinking about what you’d say or do in each of these situations didn’t you?

If you were wondering what “premeditated stress” is, that’s it. Anticipating a situation and deciding in your mind how and why you’ll respond in a certain way. Most of the time, it’s a negative response that creates stress in your body without the actual event happening.

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If you’re honest with yourself and us, you’ll say yes, you’ve indulged in premeditated stress. We all have because it’s a way of protecting ourselves from being taken advantage of, being hurt, abused, or manipulated.

Stress is a killer

But why create unnecessary stress? Stress is worst for your body than eating badly. Why? Because the hormone, Cortisol, it creates in your body was only meant to be in response to “fight or flight”. Once a threat was over, the levels would go back to a normal low ‘healthy’ level.

Stress is like being in a sustained ‘fight or flight’ situation that keeps the cortisol levels high. High cortisol levels are associated with lower immune function and bone density, increased weight gain, blood pressure, cholesterol, heart disease, depression and lower life expectancy.

That means, the conversation you have in your mind about being cut off is actually killing you slowly. Because every time you indulge in that premeditated stress conversation, you’re elevating your cortisol level and keeping your body in a state of readiness to ‘fight or flight’.

Premeditated Stress relief

There are hundreds of reasons to be and stay stressed in our society today. Between family, work, bills, aging, world events, and so much more, it’s no wonder there are increasing cases of mental illness, cancer, depression, heart disease and so on.

So, in an effort to help relieve some of the stress, here are a few ideas to help curb premeditated stress syndrome so we can let go and start enjoying our days more.

Breathe deeply – Whenever you feel something begin to creep up on you and take your joy. Stop, breathe ten deep breaths then move on. I know it sounds ancient, but it really does work to just breathe deeply. It allows your body to know that you’re not in a state of stress and relax. Helping you think clearer.

Exercise – Yeah, I’m like you, this is not my favorite thing either. But, moving your body helps you expend the energy needed to relieve stress. Don’t think of it as trying to lose weight or as a mandatory thing. Think of it as a release from the stress of life. Exercise as often as you need without regard for the benefits beyond just relieving stress. You may find you like it. . .

Beach Body Madness. . . Do you have it?

Change perspective – When you’re looking at a situation, instead of only seeing your perspective, try to see things from the other side. Doing that will slow down your reaction, help you think of other possibilities for a given situation and calm your stress. This isn’t going to work for every situation (if not try the first to suggestions) but, you’d be surprised how quickly you can calm yourself if you shift your perspective.

Conclusion

Those are suggestions to help you in the immediate, but there are a ton of other things you can do to prevent premeditated stress getting the best of you.

You may be the best at your diet and exercise routine, but if you’re always in a state of stress, you’re doing more damage to your whole system than you realize. So, don’t indulge, release. Your body will thank you.


You cannot succeed if you cannot fail

Sedruola Maruska | Leisure Life Coach

“What would you do if you knew you could not fail?”

It’s an old question asked a lot because of where it allows our minds to go. So, I asked it in my Facebook group this week and it stirred conversation.

Fear of failure keeps us from doing what we want to do because we’re afraid of things like:

  • what will “they” think?
  • how will I survive?
  • it’s too risky
  • it’s too controversial
  • I need to go back to school
  • I need the right, better, more tools/equipment
  • I’m not sure I’m the right person
  • what if I look ridiculous
  • I don’t have enough time
  • they’re not ready

And on, and on, and on. . . .

Let’s remove the stress from your success

We’re afraid of failure, but failure is the learning curve. It’s what gives us the opportunity to build experience so we know when we’ve succeeded. There’s not one person we look at as “successful” that hasn’t failed many times in order to reach that success.

A new question

So, as I considered the question I thought up a new one:

“What would you do if you knew you’d fail often, but in the end succeed?”

What if, instead of allowing the fear of failure drive us, we opened ourselves up to fail so we could succeed beyond our imagination? What if we decided:

  • who cares what they think
  • I’ll be fine
  • the risk is worth the reward
  • controversy breeds innovation
  • I know everything I need to know
  • I’ll start right now with what I have
  • I’m the exact right person for this
  • who cares how I look
  • I’ll find the time or make time
  • they better get ready

You are a badass

Fear of success

What if in the end the questions aren’t truly about the fear of all things listed, but about the success itself?

Could it be that we’re okay with the failure, but it’s the thought of actually getting to our big success that scares us? Why? Because success brings change and change is scary. It’s unknown, it’s the “X” factor.

Seems like all our excuses and fears are only to keep from walking into the black hole of “how will this all turn out?” Well, it will turn out like it will turn out. If we always had the information beforehand, what fun would life be?

You cannot succeed if you cannot fail | Sedruola Maruska

It’s the unknown that makes the journey fun! You get up everyday not knowing exactly what’s going to happen that day. You may have things planned, but there’s always “something”. That doesn’t keep you from getting out of bed and still tackling your day does it?


“What would you do if you knew you’d fail often, but in the end succeed?”

Let’s embrace the “X” factor, move forward with a spirit of power and fail often on our way to success!