It’s a visual world out there. Magazines, social media, movies — we are bombarded with images of what we should look like in photos, what we should wear, and how we should be acting.
It can be so easy for us to fall into “social media overload” and judge how we look in pictures to the images we see reflected back to us. Not just the constant influx of photography, life happenings, outfit posts, baby photos and content Etc… but more so the influx of insecurities, negative thought patterns, and the “grass looks greener” idealism about other people’s lives. So much of what we see and what we do is through the lens of the camera, and it can seem like we never measure up.
What we see in photos
I don’t know about you, but I’m often my hardest critic when I look at pictures of myself. I remember one picture that I took right when Ezra was born. I was so happy in the moment, but when I looked at that picture, my mind was filled with the negative stories that I have always told myself.
When I looked at that picture, I saw:
- my fat upper arms
- my back fat
- my ‘not going away anytime soon’ mid-section
- the roundness of my face in my jawline that grows when I gain weight.
However, I can guarantee that is not what you would have seen. If I were to look at that picture as a friend to myself, I probably would have seen:
- my cute dress
- my pretty face
- my adorable baby
- my incredibly powerful body that made a perfect human
- the immense feeling of love I get when I have my son cheek to cheek.
- nothing else matters
Does this sound familiar? No joke – our minds play tricks on us. Frankly, I could do this with all my photos, and list what I see vs. what I should see about me. Pictures should capture moments of joy, showcasing our best selves, and we should be able to feel that way about our pictures!
And we have the power to do that! There are so many ways we can harness the power of style in pictures, letting confidence and personality shine through.
The power of selfies
I have been taking selfies before they were called selfies! People always thought I was crazy but I thought it was artsy! I mean you get to see yourself at an angle that other people see you as, that your own eyes can’t on their own. For me it was about looking at myself from a different perspective. Literally and figuratively. I got to see my own beauty at all the angles, not just one. It was another way to embrace me.
By taking a selfie, you can focus on your strengths, seeing yourself as the world sees you.
Having fun in photos
Pictures don’t have to be static! So many of my favorite photos are candids – moments where I’m laughing, strutting down the street, or jumping two feet first into this fabulous life.
Catching the right photo jump is an art form. It takes practice, practice, practice! The reason I love to jump in my photos is because it always produces the most natural smile for me when I’m done. It’s like taking away all that is serious, the stress and day-to-day challenges of my life and instead replacing them with a carefree, everything is possible kid-like nature. I always feel better, feel silly, feel happy and feel energetic after a jump. They may end up blurry. But being imperfect is something to embrace, in life and in style.
Embracing your whole self — in and out of pictures
We are so much more than our perfect photos. Life is full of outtakes, but rarely do we see the outtakes online. We are deep, complicated, sometimes messy, always intricate and human. My truth is that behind the empowerment, positive infectious energy and inspiring words, I too find that sometimes my insecurities speak louder than my confidence.
Yet, when I feel that way, I get up, I dress up and I own my outtakes. These are moments in which I learn. It’s those outtakes that shape who I am and the person I get to be!
Then, I put on something that makes me feel fabulous, and I take pictures of me jumping into life, embracing everything I see, outtakes and all.
I’m here to encourage you to do the same. Embrace your outtakes, love them, and most importantly LOVE yourself.
And don’t forget, my new book — You are the Style — is out now! Buy it using the link below!