Know, first, who you are; and then adorn yourself accordingly.


Welcome to Part 2 of the Beauty Manifesto. Part 1 addressed how a woman should approach her inner beauty by viewing herself as stunning; redefining what beauty means personally; embracing her playful side; and maintaining beautiful thoughts. But, to be the most beautiful woman in the room, you can’t stop there.

Your inner-world makeover is bound to spill out into your outer-world, and it’s important to be prepared.

Your external beauty includes: the way you dress, how you communicate, how you dine, the way you carry yourself, and how you show up in the world.

Step #6:  Dress the way you desire to feel.

In France, there’s a saying, “On ne sait jamais,” or “One never knows.”

For this reason, you won’t find an elegant French woman shopping for groceries looking like she just climbed out of bed.

This saying makes a lot of sense– you never know who you might run into: an old lover, a potential relationship, your neighbor, your boss, or whoever else you’d like to shine for.

That said, the person we should really be focusing on in terms of how we show up is, of course, ourselves.

Slim, Chic and Savvy women are more concerned with impressing themselves than others.

However, they don’t underestimate the power of the ripple effect and how one small act (such as dressing your best), can spill out into every part of your life.

The ripple effect begins when you do your best (i.e., dressing with intention), which leads to self-pride and confidence. As a result, you will reap the admirations of others and create an environment that calls forth your best self.

As discussed in Part 1, the world is your playground where you get to have fun, play dress-up, and cultivate your own outer beauty and style.

How do you feel when you’re sporting an old, baggy T-shirt, sweats, sneakers, unkempt hair and no makeup? How do you feel in your most beautiful outfit, your favorite shoes, and a put-together appearance? There is a big difference.

Sure, we all have the days when sweats and an oversized top may feel like the best choice, but I encourage you to keep that look behind closed doors and remember the French saying: “On ne sait jamais”.

Let’s go back to Step #1, Start at the End. What does the person who you envision that you’d like be wear to work? How about a party? Around the house? What about to bed?

Take a look at what you’re wearing right now. How does it make you feel? What does it say about you? Is it helping you become the woman who you want to be?

Step #7:  Walk beautifully.

Posture is key.

My mother always told me to sit up straight, shoulders back, and chin up. Little did I know then, but she was sharing with me a timeless beauty secret that women have known throughout centuries.

How you walk into a room either creates or detracts from your beauty. (Tweet it!)

Let’s imagine a couple scenarios:

Someone walks in with their head down and shoulders slumped, do they want to be noticed as the most beautiful woman in the room? Most likely not. In fact, they probably won’t even be noticed.

But, walk in standing tall and sauntering into a place like you own it, will tell a very different story as your beauty, confidence and elegance are displayed. People are drawn to this type of woman.

It’s all about energy, which is in everything: your words, wardrobe, thoughts, posture, and so much more.

Examine your current energy. Is it beautiful? Would you choose to spend time with you?

Step #8:  Learn the art of conversation.

Some years ago, a table of Europeans asked me the common question: “What do you do?”. “I’m a nurse,” I honestly replied.

This was met with blank stares as if I just told the most boring story with no catchline.

“Not what you do for a job,” one kindly responded. “What do you love to do? What are your passions?  What would you stay up all night to discuss?”

In this moment, I became fascinated by the art of conversation.

Roland Barthes wrote in A Lover’s Discourse: Fragments:

“Language is a skin: I rub my language against another…I enwrap the other with my words, I caress, brush against, talk up this contact.”

In France, conversation is likened to intellectual foreplay. A great conversationalist is more revered than being a millionaire (in fact, money is usually a topic to be avoided in a country that would rather discuss politics, sex and religion than how you make money).

A beautiful woman knows looks alone will not captivate an audience.  Language is the way to seduce life. (Tweet it!)

Through conversation, we share, learn, interact and fall in love.  Language is music, poetry and a beautiful story in one format.  And, to use it effectively is an art, a skill that takes practice and a willingness to play the game.

I’ll offer you a brief snapshot of some of my conversation rules:

  1. Share the space.  The art of great conversation involves as much– or more– listening as talking.  Beware not to turn a great conversation into a monologue.
  2. Look people in the eyes.  It tells them that  you are confident, present and interested. That’s beautiful.
  3. Don’t complain.  If you must, save it for a night out with your girlfriends, and even then, don’t wallow in your misery.  Samuel Johnson made a great suggestion:  “When any fit of gloominess, or perversion of mind, lays hold upon you, make it a rule not to publish it by complaints.”
  4. Have fun! The most beautiful woman in the room is usually the one having the most fun.  Use language as a way to connect and spread good cheer.  A little humor always wins hearts.

Step #9:  Find Your Signature Style.

I recently went shopping with my 16-year old daughter.  The mall was filled with girls her own age, and they all dressed similarly—same shorts, T-shirts and shoes.

So, I had the “signature” talk with her. I truly think that everyone needs their own spice and pizzazz. This does take years to hone and comfortably acquire, but it’s important.

Pay attention to what you love and what works for your life, not someone else’s. (Tweet it!)

I feel so inspired by iconic women, like Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and Grace Kelly. Sure, they made some personal variations here and there, but their styles were always so consistent. These women represent trendsetters, not trend followers.

A beautiful woman knows herself and, although she may stray to experiment and play with different types of fashion, she will always return to what’s true for her.

Passion is always part of a woman’s signature. There’s something magnetic about a woman sharing what lights her up and, as a result, she lights up the room.

What’s your signature?  Maybe it’s a certain perfume, scarves or something that you are known for.  Begin to explore what it might be and brand yourself with what you love.

Step #10:  Don’t make it all about you.

Part of your outer beauty involves how you interact with others.  Once you’ve put your best fashion-foot forward, it’s no longer about you.  It’s about everyone else.

The moment you step into a room—a party, the grocery store or a classroom—you’ve stepped onto your playground, and it’s time to find playmates.

One of the greatest zappers of a woman’s radiance is the constant focus on herself, also known as: the perpetual comparison game, or the “not-good-enough-so-I-must overcompensate” syndrome.

If you want to elevate yourself to a place of absolute beauty in a room, replace uncertainty with curiosity and become genuinely interested in others. Get out of your own head and into their world.  Discover their passions and explore mutual interests.

If you engage with others and make them feel important, you will become the most beautiful woman in the room. (Tweet it!)

Are you ready for Part 3 (and final) of the School of Self-image Beauty Manifesto?  Stay tuned…it will land in your inbox next week!

See you soon!



The Self-Image Manifesto

You’re Invited To Live An Extraordinary Life!