Spring Colors

Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be!

One of my favorite things about a changing season is all the new colors that are around. Spring is such a great time to start wearing bright, bold colors and mixing and matching.

Yellow is such a pretty, happy and bright color. I love finding out the meaning behind each color and wearing that color when I need to feel a certain way or I want to create a certain energy. Spiritually Yellow is the color for freshness, happiness, positivity, clarity and joy amongst other feelings.

Today’s outfit includes chambray joggers, white mules and a fabulous top – all of which work perfectly for spring and certainly made me feel positive and happy standing amongst the spring flowers taking these pictures.

Joggers – linked to shop here
Studded slides – linked to shop here
Yellow eyelet top – linked to shop here
Sunglasses – linked to shop here

Do you have certain colors that make you feel a certain way?

We all have certain colors that we are more drawn to than others, so what do we do when we see new styles or trends that tell us to wear something that is not exactly in tune with what we like?  It seems like everyone is telling what we should and shouldn’t like…so how do we decide what is best for US?  Do we just wear what the fashion magazines and stores tell us?

I don’t think anyone should do something that is something that doesn’t make them feel the best possible way about themselves…so here are my top 5 reasons you should wear colors that make you feel good:

  1. We may not realize, but our energy (both positive and negative) can be directly correlated to what colors we like.  If our favorite color is Red for example, then we are going to feel great when we are wearing Red!   So it stands to reason that if you want to feel positive about life, yourself, and what is happening around you, then you should wear the colors that evoke a positive response within you!
  2. It is also true that while colors can cause certain feelings and experiences within you, they can also do the same in others.  Red is a very strong, confident color…but it can also be intimidating to others.  So while it is important to wear those colors you are in tune with, you also need to consider different shades within your favorite colors, so as not to cause adverse reactions in others.  Essentially, know your audience – and if you are dealing with someone that is not going to like you to be too bold or overbearing, then you shouldn’t wear a color similar to the Red dress in this post (darker or more muted Red tones are more appropriate in this case).
  3. It is important to get feedback from others when you try new styles or colors, but bear in mind their opinions may be more in tune with what they like than what is going to make you feel good.  You may have one friend that loves Green so when you try something Green she is going to think it’s amazing, but it may not feel the same way to you.
  4. For each season you are going to see different shades of colors, so if you want to feel like you are still “in style” for the current season, you can try different shades of your favorite colors.  Yellow is a great example, for summer and spring it is bright and bold but for fall and winter, you will see more mustard colors…they are still Yellow but they work differently at different times of the year.
  5. Finally, fall in love with your favorite colors.  Red is absolutely my favorite color, and whenever I am shopping I am innately drawn to that color.  After wearing it, I recognize that it is my power color and I pull it out when I need to feel strong and confident.  I am in tune with what works for me and makes me feel good…so fall in love with what you love and you can use that to help you feel amazing and confident when you are wearing something you love too!

Don’t forget to go and check out my latest podcasts – just click here to see the latest!

The Power of Femininity

I have linked my entire look at the end of this post…check them out – some great sale pieces to look for!

The thing that women still have to learn is that no one gives you power. You just take it!~

There are some mornings that I wake and want to feel a little softer, a little more gentle and feminine. I used to think that by doing that or acting that way it meant that I was soft or weak, but what I have found is that it makes me more approachable, less intimidating and it is a hat that we as women need to wear at times and not be ashamed of.

I’m not saying that’s it’s about acting different from who we are, but if we have that inside of us, that piece of us that likes to dress up (kind of like when we were little girls) wearing something pretty, frilly and feminine – then that’s what we shouldn’t be afraid to do.

There are some days when it is not the type of day I know I’m going to have, so I dress appropriately…but on those days where I feel like I don’t want to just be a #bossbabe, but want to feel in touch with my inner feminine side, this is how I dress.

I don’t care who you are, there are multiple personas inside all of us, and channeling them all I think it vital. Do you act differently at work than at home? I know I do. At work I am more like a CEO and at home I need to be there emotionally for my family. Dressing in a feminine way is just a way of expressing that different persona inside of you. Are you with me?

Certain styles and fabrics just scream femininity – here are a few of my favorites:

  1. Ruffles – wearing a pencil skirt is sexy, but when you add ruffles, it just softens the whole vibe. Not removing the effect, just making it a little more subtle.
  2. Lace – is classic, delicate and always a great feminine look.
  3. Embroidery – especially floral embroidery is a way to add a feminine touch to a piece that may have just been ordinary.
  4. Up do – when I really looking to amp up my feminine style, I like to wear my hair up. I like it to look soft rather than edgy, and in today’s post I added a gold bun cuff to add a little extra something.
  5. Velvet has the versatility to be both feminine, luxurious and sexy. It may not be considered a fabric for spring and summer, but I always find ways to add it in if I really feel like my outfit needs it. For example – I have a really cute skinny pink velvet scarf that when worn with a leather jacket and jeans can add just a small touch of femininity.
  6. Patterns – floral is obviously feminine but there are so many other patterns that can add to your feminine style. Such as: eyelet (or broderie anglaise), smaller brightly colored geometric patterns (especially when I think about African fabrics), brocade, stripes and hearts.

Obviously these aren’t the only way to create a feminine looking style, but they are definitely some to consider. If you have any questions about a fabric, pattern or style, don’t hesitate to contact me and I will answer you!

Have fun with Accessories

Accessories are like the perfect spice. They compliment what is already there…

Yes – I do believe that shoes are the most important part of an outfit.
No – that doesn’t mean it’s the only thing you can think about!

I love spending time finding great accessories that can help make an outfit pop – in fact, aside from changing a pair of shoes, accessories are the easiest and most noticeable ways to affect how you look. By adding a great pair of earrings you can achieve an immediate style pop. A bag can be the thing that draws the eye and even easier, now that spring is here and summer around the corner, add a fabulous pair of sunnies.

You can shop a similar bag to the cute backpack I’m wearing by clicking here

I always have so much fun shopping for accessories (OK, I admit it, I pretty much have fun shopping for ANYTHING)…but for accessories, it’s an easy one, you can just buy whatever and then find things to go with it. Earrings are a personal favorite of mine – I definitely love statement earrings, especially when I am wearing my hair up.

If you are looking for a way to “up” your style game, accessories are the perfect way to do it. Buy a fabulous pair of earrings or necklace (find some of my top picks at the end of this post that you can shop, a pair of fun sunnies (shop mine right here), or even a set of bead bracelets or bangles for your summer styling (see the end of the post to shop more of my picks).

What Makes you Feel Feminine

When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid!

No two people are exactly the same, we all like different things, we all enjoy spending time doing different things and different things make us feel good about ourselves.

In a world where as women we have long been known as the weaker sex, softer, less aggressive, more of a nurturer, etc., it doesn’t mean that we have to give up ourselves in order to look and feel feminine. I will admit that for the longest time I considered femininity to be a weakness, but what I have realized is that it is actually a power. Femininity is a tricky thing because it’s not something that you can just go after aggressively because that essentially kills the whole feminine vibe, it is something that you have to gently, softly and cautiously attract to yourself…so how do you do that?

I think that because we are all so different, there are different things that make us feel feminine, but there is also a good chance that how one person feels feminine may also carry a lot of weight with another person. Here are a few things that I use, what I call on when I want to feel feminine:

  1. First things first, I don’t allow myself to think of femininity as a negative thing. I call it my superpower and I allow myself to take on it’s persona.
  2. I am a very type A personality, I am driven and I am a boss lady, but when I want to feel feminine I don’t allow those of my traits to take over. I allow myself to feel vulnerable and let my empathy take over.
  3. Wearing certain clothes can definitely affect how I feel and there are certain things that make me feel more feminine than others. Such as, lace, velvet, floral patterns, and soft lines in the design of a piece. Take the blouse I am wearing in this post – it flows, it’s soft and it gives the impression of gentleness.
  4. There are certain hairstyles that scream femininity. I always feel feminine when I pull my hair back in a chignon, soft curls and waves can have the same effect.
  5. The most important thing that I remember when I want to feel feminine and not “scare” people by being a boss lady is that I don’t have to be right all the time. It is especially hard when I know that I know something and I want to tell people that what I know is right, or I want to correct people, or just push my opinion…I know that if I do any of those things, it will have the exact opposite effect!

Feeling and looking feminine isn’t just about what you wear, it’s so much more. When I see models in magazines and they look really feminine and soft, I often wonder if that is what they are really like. Femininity is about letting your inner sensitive self come out (unless of course you are just planning on taking a picture and not interacting with anyone all day). I have found that the best connections I have made in my life are those that are based not on me being pushy or bold, but more about me being gentle, listening and being there for someone else. It doesn’t mean that you can’t create amazing connections if you are strong or bold, it just means that you might turn people off that are not quite as strong as you if you don’t approach them in a more gentle way first.

I am a strong woman, I love being strong, I love challenges and I love taking on things that scare me, and one of the biggest challenges I have had in my life is to know when to be gently strong. I honestly didn’t think it was a real thing, but what I am finding is that in my strength I have found a whole new level of strength that comes from being empathetic and loving.

Of course it also doesn’t hurt to look feminine, because I’m not going to lie, Brandon does appreciate it the most when I am sensitive and vulnerable. In fact he has told me that he feels the closest connection to me when I am gentle – way more than when I am working on my sexy vibe. Crazy to think that he might not be looking for what society has taught us that men like the most. He wants me to be real, relatable, vulnerable, sensitive and loving – and if that’s what creates the best connection between us, then that is what I want to nurture more than anything!

I Believe in Superheroes

Weakness is a Superpower in Disguise!

I have always loved the superhero movies – maybe because I grew up in a home with only brothers and now I only have sons. Nevertheless, when a new movie comes out I am the first to want to be there, and I absolutely love them!

With all of that being said, I do believe that the world actually has REAL superheroes. I don’t believe in them in the same way that Superman can fly or Aquaman (oh boy! Aquaman…) can actually survive underwater, but more in the sense that we all have our own super powers should we choose to use them.

Shop my look by clicking the links at the bottom of this post…

Our family went to watch “Glass” earlier this week, and for those of you that have seen that or seen “Unbreakable” or “Split” you may get where I am going with this. I don’t want to be the one to ruin this movie for you just in case you haven’t seen it, but just know that in the movie things you would not expect to be superpowers or strengths actually are what make the characters super-human. I really enjoyed the movie and would definitely recommend it. Unbreakable was the prequel to this movie and released in 2000. In that movie Bruce Willis’s character was the sole survivor of a train wreck and it was at that point after he had experienced such trauma that he realized what his superpower was.

After I watched it I started contemplating how if in the movie (and yes, I do know that it was not based on fact), if it was possible to have strengths or superpowers, then why not in real life? I have always believed that our talents or strengths are actually our superpowers. We are not all good at the same things, and that is what makes us stronger and more unique.

The quote I posted at the top of this blog is one that really resonated with me, because if we consider our weaknesses and how they can stop us from reaching our full potential, how amazing would it be if we converted those weaknesses into our strengths?

So, if we consider our weaknesses and how we can turn them into our strengths, what is the one that you really want to be your superpower? I would love to say that I am going to turn the fact that I am not the fastest runner into me being The Flash, but in the real world, that will never happen. So, I am going to focus on those things I know can make me stronger, more confident, resilient and happy!

For now – I consider my superpowers to be: I believe I can do anything if I put my mind to it, confidence, empathy, and inner strength. What are yours?

Real Not Perfect

Shop my look & similar by clicking the links at the bottom of the post

To be worthy doesn’t mean having to be perfect!

Perfection is something that is one of those unattainable goals that we somehow seem to be striving for, always in vain. We set expectations on ourselves and set ourselves up for failure when our goal or expectation is to become perfect.

It is easy to get caught up in wanting ourselves to be perfect, but it is also very dangerous because when we are wanting that perfection it very often doesn’t stop at ourselves and we come to want or even expect that from others around us as well!

In previous posts I’ve talked a little about how comparison of ourselves to others is fatal, and in this age of social media, it’s really hard to not allow ourselves to succumb to such self-sabotaging behavior. So how do we change our mindset so that striving for personal excellence is what we aim for? Here are some things that I use daily and they work for me:

  1. Choose to focus only on being better each day than the day before – rather than focusing on what we’re doing wrong or we’re not great at.
  2. Choose to appreciate and love the things we are good at and build on those…
  3. Practice positive self-talk so that we can start to realize how amazing we are.
  4. Allow ourselves to celebrate any victory, whether great or small. That way we are not always dissatisfied with our results. We have to appreciate the small things first otherwise we won’t know what the big things are!
  5. Don’t just focus on the outcome – a lot of growth and strength building comes in the journey. In the learning – you know, the falling down and getting up!
  6. Sometimes procrastination comes from not wanting to not be able to complete something or do it perfectly. Allowing ourselves the grace to not finish something immediately gives us the opportunity to avoid procrastination and learn something along the way.

I know when I let go of my need to control everything, my need for things to go EXACTLY according to a plan I might have in my mind, I am always pleasantly surprised by the results I get. My expectations have been known to get me into trouble, because I promise you the scenarios and outcomes I create in my mind are so much more elaborate than I could ever create in real life. It took me a while to realize that I didn’t want to hold myself back and I certainly didn’t want to be unhappy…but once I did, it created a huge amount of freedom and was light a weight being lifted off my shoulders.

I used to think that the pressure I put on myself – the pressure to create success and fulfillment – was what made me successful, but what I have realized after A LONG time is that it’s actually the opposite. I am always going to be driven, motivated, have a love of stepping out of my comfort zone, but it was actually the expectations and the need for perfection that held me back rather than making me better. It’s hard to come to the realization that I was sabotaging my own success, but once I did and I became conscious about my behavior…that’s when the magic started to happen!

Turn Weakness into Strength

Women are never stronger than when they arm themselves with their weaknesses!

As I think back to my childhood I realize that there were so many times that people told me negative things which caused me to feel bad or insecure with myself. In fact, one of the things that I was told when I was growing up by “mean girls” was that I had a huge chin and that it made me look like a witch. I’ll admit that there were some times where I wasn’t sure what they were saying was true or not, and it definitely made me self conscious.

It took me a few years to realize that those that told me those things were probably saying it because they felt insecure or less than confident about themselves. I had a choice at that time to either let what they told me become what I believed and repeated to myself, or to not let it get to me. I was a teenager when it happened, and it was one of the must vulnerable times in my life. My choice was to embrace my features, enjoy who I was and not only carry on but to hold my head up and be proud! I looked at my family and realized that my “strong” chin – which is what I choose to call it – came from my Grandad and he was an AMAZING man! How could I possibly feel bad about it?

As I think back to that time in my life I realize that it was a turning point – it was the time that I made a decision to not let others determine how I feel about myself. It was at that time I promised myself that I would always stand up for myself and be bold! If I could see the people that said mean things about me, I would want to thank them – because if they had not said those things, I wouldn’t have become the strong, determined, powerful and fulfilled woman that I am.

There are definitely people in this life that are going to try and make you feel bad about yourself, who you are, what you look like and very often undermine what you are capable of. I can promise you that NO ONE can make you feel anything. It is your choice to believe what people say or think about you or not.

I have found at times in my life that some people I thought were my friends chose to root against me, to sabotage my success, and quite often be two-faced and almost a wolf in sheep’s clothing. As I become older and more mature I realize that I have no control over how people act or how they think, but I do have control over how it affects me. When someone points out a weakness of mine or roots against me, I choose to not focus on that but rather on being the best me that I can be!

What I have also found is that for all the negativity out there…there is still so much positivity. I choose to focus on that.

Whatever we focus on we end up with more of – so why not think the best about yourself, your talents, your blessings…see what happens!

Laughter – the Best Medicine

Always find a reason to laugh. It may not add years to your life but it will definitely add life to your years!

Something that has always been apparent in my life is the need for me to laugh. I like to think of myself as quick witted, because I love to say things a little off the cuff to make others laugh too. I’ll tell you why…I have always loved laughing and find greater connections with others when I feel that they have the same sense of humor as me or are equally as “strange” 😉

When I first came to the US from England and I was newly married I found myself sometimes getting offended or hurt by things Brandon or others might say. I was brought up so much more reserved, I was taught that sometimes saying something to someone wasn’t necessary. Not that I have ever had a problem giving people a piece of my mind…I just was taught that it was so much more important to be polite over “just being honest”.

My family was one that always laughed and made fun of each other, but somehow we just knew that it was a joke and a little cheeky. It’s weird that even though I had been brought up that way and my family and I had done that, when Brandon particularly said things it made me feel a little self conscious and sensitive. The good thing about having a mindset coach for a husband is that he is ALWAYS willing to talk things through and somehow we just figure out a way to make it work.

Over the years I have learned that I need to not take myself so seriously, and I have actually learned to laugh at myself. Being a work in progress is nothing to be ashamed of, in fact, it’s absolutely vital. I do still get called the “fun sponge” but more often than not I try new things, I don’t mind if I screw up and make a fool of myself, but most importantly I work on not letting ideas be more important than people.

One thing I look forward to in 2019 is the opportunity to smile more, have more fun, create even more connections and love my life even more.

Laughter truly is something that makes every situation more enjoyable…in fact, when we create experiences that involve laughter and smiling they are always more memorable. Even if you don’t remember exactly what you were laughing about, remembering the feeling you had and the experience of connecting with those you love is felt throughout our bodies FOREVER. I can still remember the feeling I had when I was around my Grandad Ron…he always made us all laugh because he was quick witted and funny. His saying that still brings a smile to my face was “Happen she/he wasn’t thinking” – he would say that whenever someone would do something that was an accident or not intentional.

Because smiling and laughter is contagious in our house when someone gets started on a good laughing fit, there are always going to be others that join in at some point. My kids tease me that when I really laugh, not only do I cry but also my right eye closes and they say I look like a pirate. I’m totally OK with it, especially because at the very moment that I know my eye is closing, I am having the time of my life. Who knows, I may even capture a picture of me with the eye closed mid-laughter at some point soon.

If you don’t resolve to do anything else for 2019, decide to add a little more smiling and laughter into your life and see what happens. I bet you won’t be able to say you’re not having fun!

Michelle
XOXO


Shine a Little

“Nothing can dim the light that shines from within”

Christmas is the season for so many things: Family time, present buying, parties and friends. Even if you’re not spending your time going to parties or spending it with friends, there’s definitely nothing wrong with “shining” a little. I know, sounds a little strange, but we hear a lot about making a good impression or dressing for an occasion, and all of those are great, but unless you are letting your inner light shine, are you really making a good impression?

I have spent the past few years becoming more and more aware of how my actions and behavior most definitely changes the outcome that I get. I realized a few years ago when I was going through a kind of dark time in my life, that if I wanted light or positivity to show up in my life then I had to be the start of that light.

Sensitivity to energy is something we all have but some more than others. I noticed that when I surrounded myself with people that didn’t evoke a positive feeling in me, or even worse that made me feel dark or even down, I wasn’t able to be as resilient to certain situations or when adversity hit my life. I realized that I must also be doing that to others too when I was not putting off a positive or light energy.

This may sound a little woo-woo, but I can attest 100% that I had to change MY behavior before anything in my life would change. I had actually reached the point where I didn’t even like being around me because I knew I was more focused on negative than positive, and I was more likely to see the cup as half empty rather than half full.

I don’t know if you have ever experienced this yourself or not, but even if you haven’t I am sure you have been around someone and for some reason you just felt a weird around them or they felt a little “off” and you couldn’t figure out why. Before someone even speaks our body is picking up on their energy and if that energy isn’t good, we may not understand exactly what is happening but chances are we feel uncomfortable or don’t want to be around them.

I made a choice to change my energy, to focus more on positivity and on bringing more light to others. After making a choice to do this and working on it every day, I have noticed that the more light I give off, the more light I actually get in return. If you haven’t heard the expression “you get what you give” I can tell you that for this example, it is exactly true. Just like the more love we give the more we get, it is true about light too.

So, as I plan spending family time tomorrow, amidst all the chaos of the Christmas season, I am focused on being the light in my home, in being the one that when someone feels like they need strength or positivity, that they can turn to me.

I don’t know if you experience this in your home or not, but I can tell you if I am having a bad day or I feel sad, EVERYONE in my house knows it. They know because the light or energy they are used to seeing from me isn’t present during my “down” times. I used to think that it was too much responsibility for me or that I didn’t want all of that to rest of my shoulders, but I have definitely changed my mindset so that now I think of it is as a privilege rather than a weight on my shoulders.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas…I hope your inner light finds its way to the surface and you have wonderful time filled with love and light!

Shop my look by clicking the links below…

Don’t give in to Aging

Meriance Anti-aging skincare kit with Collagen

Beautiful young people are accidents of nature, but beautiful old people are works of art!

Do you ever wish that you could go back to your 20 year old self and tell them something that you have learned?  I am constantly finding things that I wish my 20 year old self knew, so that I wouldn’t be scrambling to fix things I would have taken care of already.

For example, I am sure you know about muscle memory, and how when you do something often enough and well enough, your body just remembers what to do and goes back to doing it.  It’s kind of like riding a bike – something our minds and muscles don’t forget. 

One thing I have been thinking about recently is how I am determined to grow old at MY pace.  I don’t want to be that little old Grandma sitting in a rocking chair with my grey hair in a bun.  Not that there is anything wrong with being that Grandma I just don’t think it would suit me.  

My actual Grandma didn’t pass away until she was almost 97 and right up until the end she was fabulous.  I once asked her what her secret was and she told me that taking care of herself, especially her skin had always been vital for her.  She went clothes shopping right up until the end, she cared about how she looked, not because she was vain, but because it was important for her to feel good.  I realized that I am the exact same way.  I dress up and take care of myself because of ME and how it makes ME feel!

Beauty is how YOU feel about YOU – it becomes visible on the outside by how you feel on the inside – shop here

I am always searching for new products and ideas to help me age gracefully.  I recently had the pleasure to try out some new collagen anti-aging skin products…and even after only using them for a week I can feel a difference.  As you know one of the things that aging does to your skin is to diminish its elasticity and plumpness.  Immediately when I started using this Meriance line, I could feel the skin on my face tightening and it just felt a lot softer.  I don’t know about you, but I am pretty much willing to try any product at least once to find out if it works for my skin, especially if it means that I can delay or redirect my aging process.  It kind of drives me crazy that my husband, Brandon, just seems to get better looking with age, and I feel like I notice a new wrinkle every single day.

While I don’t want prevent aging completely, I certainly do want to delay it as long as possible.  If you haven’t heard of Meriance, it is a Canadian company, I would recommend checking them out.  You can click this link to do some research or try some products for yourself.  

I am using the Full Anti-aging skincare kit, and right now they are offering $100 off the total cost of the kit if you use the code STYLEQUEENIE100 at the checkout.  I never recommend something unless I feel like it works, I like it for myself and I believe it is a good value, and this kit, well it answers all three of those questions.  Just click here to shop this kit or one of the others they have to offer