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For January, Be Your Own Kind of Beautiful!

New Jersey

By: Dr. Phyllis Bivins-Hudson/Jackie Amorine 

Happy New Year, everyone, 

For the month of January, let’s explore some genderless tips on how to be your own beautiful.

It took me a long time to realize true beauty because I think it has become so commercialized. But when I learned what it truly is, I also learned that it could be found in each of us—even the worst of us. 

So, here are some timeless beauty tips. 

Tip #1: Begin 2023 with these words as your new mantra: Be Your Own Kind of Beautiful. And because you are going to be your own kind of beautiful, you get to define what that means to you. How are you, beautiful? Don’t be shy about who you are. Remember, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

In your case, you are the beholder. So what does your kind of beauty look like as it relates to you? I’m not asking you to define beauty in your significant other, your friend, your parents, your children, etc. I’m not even asking you to describe yourself the way others have, but I am asking you to look in the mirror and describe that beautiful person looking back at you.

Really look at yourself and think about who you are. Ask yourself the question: Who is she or he or they or them? Take the time to get to know who you are in 2023. Don’t be defined by others. Know your worth. Know you are beautiful, not in someone else’s eyes, but in your own eyes.

No one knows your beauty like you do. You are a beautiful soul, so find many ways to express that to yourself. Remove any negativity that surrounds you, whether that negativity is coming from people, yourself, or things. You are beautiful in places you have not even explored yet.

Get in touch with yourself and begin to count the many ways you are beautiful. Because you are. You are a unique creature and there is absolutely no one on this earth exactly like you. 

Tip #2: Let me begin by saying that when we ladies talk about being beautiful, we have no quorums about saying so. However, I’ve learned that for men, it’s a little tough for them to reference themselves as beautiful.

Instead, as one of my followers pointed out, they prefer to simply say, be your authentic self. And I’m good with that. 

Being beautiful or authentic requires us to not just look deeply inside ourselves for that inner beauty or authenticity, but to also develop it. We can’t be satisfied with just looking in the mirror and acknowledging who we are, but developing that person looking back at us.

This means really knowing who you are, embracing yourself, sometimes getting out of your comfort zone, developing a thick skin, and learning as much about yourself as you can. When you neglect to do this kind of development, that beauty or authentic self goes by the wayside because others will be waiting to quickly define you.

If I’ve learned nothing else from my own storied life, I’ve learned not to be defined by anyone. I define me. And I take me wherever I go. So take as long as you need in 2023 to begin living life on your terms, defined by you.

This life is too short to allow others to take your power. So be who you want to be. And in the words of  Bruno Mars…If perfect is what you’re looking for, then just stay the same. In other words, you are already there. 

Tip #3: Beauty or authenticity is seen from different lenses. It can be found in the stories told about us. When people truly know you, whether from a good place or not, they tell stories about you based on their experiences with you.

They are sharing with the world the true self you have given them a snapshot of. And the sum total of those stories is what makes you who you are. It says to those who know you and those who would like to know you, that this is who you truly are in the eyes of others. When people encounter us, we want them to say beauty and authenticity live in our hearts.  

When that is the case, all the qualities that encompass you as an individual will show up wherever you go. As for me, when I show up, I do so with Phyllis in tow. I never leave home without her because she is me, and I am she.  

Finally, in the words of the Broadway actress Helen J. Russell, “Outside beauty turns the head, but inner beauty turns the heart.” I choose the latter. What about you?

Until next month, keep flying on your own beautiful wings.