Posts Tagged ‘Body Image’

Body image is our psychological experience of embodiment, providing us with a tangible shape or form for our intangible perception of our body.  Got that?  Body image is where it all begins as an infant, something we develop, order, and re-order throughout our lifespan.  What we think of our body may range between delight, disregard, and disgust and it profoundly influences our quality of life.
Negative Body Image, A Global Issue
Powerful attention to the body and the idea of having a perfect body is transmitted through the media and in everyday conversation with family and friends-parents and peers.  For women, the focus is on the pursuit of beauty through cosmetics, clothing, hair styling, nail enhancement, and dieting as well as cosmetic surgery.
Body image assessments reveal that a negative body image is experienced by virtually all women and girls, with men and boys also afflicted.  Dissatisfaction with the body is a major contributor to a negative body image and low levels of self esteem-of how we feel about ourselves as a whole.  Depression, anxiety, and eating disorders often follow.
Instilled in every society, negative body image is now a global issue of concern.  Pressure is on sub-cultural groups of individuals that idealize the perfect body.  This includes fitness buffs, gymnasts, athletes, dancers, models, and movie stars.  They do register higher rates of body dissatisfaction and eating disorders.  They, in turn, influence us so that satisfaction or dissatisfaction with our appearance will be a result of the degree to which we do or do not meet the socio-cultural ideal set up according to worldly standards.
The socio-cultural ideal woman is tall and thin, with moderately large breasts and long legs, large eyes, clear skin. If she’s light skinned, she wants to be darker.  If she’s dark skinned she wants to be lighter. The socio-cultural ideal man is tall and muscular, with broad shoulders and narrow waist, thick hair, scruffy beard, and also tan, if light skinned.  It is virtually impossible for women and men to achieve these ideals by healthy means.  Nonetheless, they are accepted and adopted as the reference by which to judge ourselves-invariably resulting in body dissatisfaction and a negative body image.
Tools To Facilitate A Positive Body Image
Changing our perception of the body often leads to a changed body image.  Clothing is a tool for us to use, an agent of change-both body changing and mind changing.  Specifically, changing the shape of our clothing can change our body image boundaries-easily improving our body silhouette.  Layering clothing works wonders to camouflage a body area or balance our body.  In turn, we may perceive and accept ourselves in a more positive manner.
Better yet, dress can effectively prevent body image problems from developing-effectively fostering feelings of acceptance through the ability to regularly recognize, select, and coordinate clothes that flatter the body.  The achievement of a more realistic body image allows for the positive application of visual design in dress (or vice versa), therefore enhancing our self-presentation as well as our everyday interactions and relationships with others.  This is image management and expressive image therapy in action, something we can do for ourselves.

It is truly more important to be healthy and whole than to try to match some unhealthy worldly standard.  My father used to say, “I’m pretty good for the shape I’m in.”  That’s a good attitude.  I remind us to appreciate our body and all it does for us.  It’s the vehicle that gets us where we want to go-even if the pace is slow at times.  Knowing your body type directs you to flattering clothing styles and coordination.  To learn more, get yourself to my Style for Life Retreat.  Be careful in all you do and make mindful dressing part of your everyday life.

Visit our website www.conselle.com or contact us at Conselle,
801-224-1207 or judith@conselle.com

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By Judith Rasband, AICI CIM and Dani Slaugh, Conselle Affiliate

Never a lip is curved with pain
That can’t be kissed into smile again.
~Brete Harte

Valentine’s is a great day to share the love and give someone you care about a smile.  We’ve put together a list of famous lips and common tips on what your smile says about you. But first, guess which celeb belongs to these lips! (answers at the bottom)

attef98f   A

attef990   B

attef991   C

attef992   D

attef9a2   E

attef9a3   F

attef9a4   G

As we have learned in Sherlock Holmes, it is impossible to not communicate.  Everything about our image from the clothing, hair, body language, tan line, jewelry, shoes and yes, even a smile tells a story about each of us.  So what is your smile communicating?  In The Definitive Book of Body Language, Allan and Barbara Pease describe the Five Common Types of Smiles:
1. The Tight-Lipped Smile
It sends the message that the smiler has a secret or a withheld opinion or attitude that they will not be sharing with you.  It’s a favorite of women who don’t want to reveal that they don’t like someone and is usually clearly read by other women as a rejection signal. Most men are oblivious to it.
2. The Twisted Smile
The Twisted Smile is peculiar to the Western world and can only be done deliberately, which means it can send only one message – sarcasm.
jokernicholson3. The Drop-Jaw Smile
This is a practiced smile where the lower jaw is simply dropped down to give the impression that the person is laughing or playful, but they are faking enjoyment.
princess_diana_remembrance_screensaver_10-lgw4. Sideways-Looking-Up Smile
With the head turned down and away while looking up with a Tight-Lipped Smile, the smiler looks juvenile, playful, and secretive.  This coy smile has been shown to be men’s favorite everywhere, because when a woman does it, it engenders parental male feelings, making men want to protect and care for females.  This is one of the smiles Princess Diana used to captivate the hearts of people everywhere.
george_w_bush_smirk5. The George W. Bush Grin
President George W. Bush always has a permanent smirk on his face.  Ray Birdwhistell found that smiling among middle-class people is most common in Atlanta, Louisville, Memphis, Nashville, and most of Texas.  Bush is a Texan and they smile more than most other Americans.  As a result, in Texas, an unsmiling individual might be asked if he was “angry about something,” while in New York, the smiler might be asked,  “What’s so funny?” President Jimmy Carter was also a Southerner who smiled all the time.  This worried the Northerners who feared that he knew something they didn’t.
Did you guess right?  
A. Madonna, B. Lucy Liu, C. Angelina Jolie, D. Julia Roberts, E. Taylor Swift, F. Marilyn Monroe, G. Naomi Campbell

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By Judith Rasband, AICI CIM and Dani Slaugh, Conselle Affiliate

You can’t be a fake or phony and don’t have to create a facade or pretend to be someone you’re not. You’ve got to be yourself and project or reflect the “real you.” You may simply have to be yourself more consciously, purposefully, positively, and continuously than you have been in the past. A successful image is an invitation to become acquainted with the person inside. The person who knows their own style, the best clothing for their figure type, their favorite colors and how to wear them. This person knows how to dress to impress regardless of the trends, regardless of their age. Your personal style is unique to you! There is no one on earth exactly like you, so don’t allow others to categorize you or tell you that you are a number. Educating yourself on the power of appearance is invaluable.  We have listed some different personal style photos below and invite you to take a look….then take a moment to reflect on what your appearance is saying about you.

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  • Do you have trouble getting your ideas accepted by others?
  • Do you often justify or make excuses for the way you look?
  • Do you dislike what you see when you catch a glimpse of yourself in a mirror or window glass?
  • Do you feel inadequate in knowing how to dress to communicate different moods or messages?
  • Do you limit the places you go because of the clothes you have to wear?
  • Do you feel uncomfortable or intimidated with others who are dressed well?
  • Do you feel frustrated or overwhelmed when shopping for clothes?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, attention to dress can help you.

Most people want to be attractive, but all too often they assume appearance just happens.  Some view it as a matter of luck, or an inherent trait.  Others continually wish, watch and wait for some sort of magic that will make them instantly attractive….turn them into a lion. However, it just doesn’t work that way.  It takes knowledge, thought, and effort.  For those who really want to create an attractive appearance, a personal stylist or image consultant holds the most hope and help.

At Conselle, we have three levels of support to help you reach your full potential.

1.  For individual private services with a qualified personal stylist or image management consultant,

CLICK HERE:  www.conselle.com
2.  For a week long retreat where we teach you the life-long skills to know and grow your image,
3.  To become an image consultant, learn from one of only nine certified image masters in the country,

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By Judith Rasband, AICI CIM with Sarah Ward, Conselle Affiliate

Let’s face it — stay-at-home moms don’t just sit around — they work!  If you are a work-at-home mom, you know how busy life can get juggling all your different roles and responsibilities on a daily basis.  Between making lunches and shuttling kids across town, you may have found that how the way you look often takes back burner.

It’s common for stay-at-home moms to get stuck in the routine of wearing sweatpants and a T-shirt.  On a regular basis, however, this attire can unconsciously contribute to feelings of depression and get you feeling down.  Think about it.  When you’re feeling relaxed to the point of sloppy, you don’t feel charged up and ready to go.

The remedy?  Make a habit of looking nice at home.  Set aside some time for yourself and dress in comfortable, good-looking clothes with a little makeup.  This will improve your self-confidence and help you to be more productive during the day.  Looking nice is one of the fastest and most effective ways to feel good about yourself as a work-at-home mom.

Remember: The way you dress affects the way you think, feel, act and then the way others respond to you — including your children.

Copyright Judith Rasband and Conselle L.C. 2009

Judith Rasband is the Image Expert and would love to help you assemble your work-at-home mom wardrobe!  Visit www.conselle.com or call 801-224-1207 to learn more.

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By Judith Rasband, AICI CIM and Elizabeth Liechty from the 2nd Edition of Fabulous Fit 

Fabulous Fit

“Fit?  You mean fat!” shouted an enthusiastic seminar patron on the subject of proper fit in clothes.  And she’s right.  We often think about the way our clothing fits in terms of extra weight.  We’re wishing we had a smaller something, somewhere on our body. 

Fit is a state of mind as well as a state of physical being.  The clothes we wear influence the way we think, the way we feel, the way we act and the way people react or respond to us.  By wearing clothes that don’t fit, we can’t help but think about our body and appearance.  Many people report feeling physically and psychologically uncomfortable and unattractive.  We act accordingly. 

Chances are, you’ve seen people tugging at pants too tight or hitching up too-long or too-loose slacks or skirts.  The appearance and the behavior are distracting and noticed by others.  They too, respond accordingly. 

Wearing clothes that don’t fit focuses negative attention on the body—your own attention as well as the attention of others.  It’s no wonder that even a size 10 woman thinks she’s too fat when she wears clothing two sizes too small.  If the clothes feel strained or tight, we feel fat!  We feel self-conscious, continually aware of tight clothes pressing or rubbing against our body, cutting into our body. 


Dress us in clothes that fit, clothes that slip easily over our body with room to move, and we can forget about ourselves, our body, our size and concentrate on more important matters.  We can get on with life, secure with thoughts and feelings of self-confidence that come from knowing our clothes are both comfortable and attractive. 

Other people notice poor fit too.  Garments that gap and ripple or wrinkle are distracting.  They draw negative attention to figure variations and fitting problems.  Clothing too tight restricts movement and often offends others.  Wearing size 10 when we need size 14 demonstrates insecurity.  It tends to declare, “I don’t like my body.  I’m doing my best to ignore it—or to make you think I’m smaller.” 

Reality Check:  Clothing too small makes us look even larger.  If it feels tight, it looks tight.  If it looks tight it makes us look even heavier—stuffed in.  Tight fitting clothes expose and emphasize figure variations we may prefer people didn’t notice.  They cause us to look out of proportion and out of balance.  A slightly loose fit—an elegantly loose fit with just enough ease—is the way to look thinner, trimmer, slimmer, smaller.  Call it what you like, it works! 


A fabulous fit eliminates the gaps, ripples or wrinkles that draw negative attention to our figure variations and fitting problems.  A fabulous fit allows others to focus positive attention on the person—their face and purposeful points of interest. 

Fabulous fit is a must.  It’s essential to looking your personal or professional best. You can wear nearly any clothing style when you get it to fit.  With less strain on them, they look neater longer and wear better, longer. 

One of the easiest and most effective ways to improve or enhance appearance is to get a fabulous fit in your clothes.  One of the fastest ways to boost your mood and sense of self-worth is to enhance appearance.   It works! 

Copyright Judith Rasband and Conselle L.C. 2009

Judith Rasband is the Image Expert and would love to work with you!  Visit www.conselle.com or call 801-224-1207 to learn more.

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