Friday, May 11, 2012

Balancing Self Expression and Our Inner Selves

You think you have a hold on your trademark style and self esteem, when something happens to give you a brand new perspective. Don't you love change?

At some point earlier this year I reached the conclusion that the more I questioned whether I was too tomboyish and not feminine enough, the more I needed to let go of it.

What was distancing my perspective from true self-expression? If I'm comfortable and look respectable enough for the activity I'm engaged in at the time, why question it?

Our subconscious expresses our inner "thermometer" or weather via what we feel most drawn to or, in fashion and style, most comfortable wearing.

Maybe wearing simple tunic dresses is your thing. Maybe eye-catching purple KoolAid hair is. Who's to question how you should express yourself? Who's to question if you don't fit a specific mold? Molds are for jello anyway. Good for you for breaking out of stereotypes. Styles are just guidelines, we're supposed to add our own spice to things and show everyone what we're all about.

Seeing Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo back at the beginning of the year was a nourishing experience on a variety of levels. It also gave me a little nudge to re-evaluate my self-criticisms. I may not be as feminine and graceful as a ballerina (of any sex!), but why would I even want to compare like that? There's plenty of "me" inside to express outside.

My yoga practice over the past year (and two months) has done much to re-establish balance and added a certain modicum of grace to my movements. I've been able to add extra yoga workouts to my weeks, so that's a plus. I'm a little less putzy every day, so that's a plus. I've been wearing tunic dresses at work more often, which is kinda girly, right? And which is a plus.

Although I still have difficulty reconciling photos or videos of myself to how I see myself in a mirror or in my mind's eye, I don't really find it as earth shattering anymore. The lack of connection is no longer defining or stressful. I am what I am after all.

In essence, I've re-calibrated my self criticisms. And it's been going fine. I like this new-found peace quality to things. It may very well be aging and a quieter, more stable inner voice. Maybe it's the yoga. Either way, I want to celebrate people's self expression. Here's a quote I recently heard from the ministerial intern at our church: Let's be abnormal and act like ourselves! (from the song titled: it's only a weewee).

Being yourself, it's quite the concept, and quite freeing. Cheers!
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