Last Saturday night, while blasting the Salt-N-Pepa station on Pandora, I took one last look in the mirror before heading to a party. My hair was the right amount of tousled. My slip dress and satin smoking jacket were on point. My black Vans howled, “whimsical comfort” at the super moon. I was red lipstick ready and eager to Shoop-oop-a-doop.
Upon arrival, I was ushered onto the private deck of a beachside bar. Think bungalow’s, bartenders, a decadent spread of food, and hilarious friends. And yet, the following thoughts tsunami’ed into my brain:
So and So’s dress is more fetching than mine. I’m frumpy. What’s Her Face’s heels are so flattering. My sneakers make me look like a teenaged boy. That Girl’s makeup is so sophisticated. My gold glitter smacks of ‘unemployed art teacher’.
And on and on and on…
Did I realize that I could admire someone else’s style without it detracting from my own? Of course not. Intellect and Reason were not on the guest list. What I did do, however, saved my sinking spirits nonetheless.
For the rest of the night I spoke and acted like I was everything I wanted to be. I said things like, “I better have another slider. I’m getting too skinny.” Then I ate a second slider. And a quesadilla. Instead of moaning about what a pig I am (not fun party talk) I went on about how I’m bulking up for winter because if one more person tell me how thin I am… I called attention to how seductive I smell, how everyone is obsessed with my beauty, and how compelling I am.
Even though I was joking, the energy inside my body shifted from heavy to light. I’m not kidding. I was suddenly buoyant. Then my friend Jill jumped on board. Soon we were cracking up and trying to out-brag each other. It was such a welcomed change from the Self-Loathing station we usually play. And the physical shift was undeniable.
So, next time your dial is set to Self-Loathe, change the station. Tell everyone how fabulous you are. You’ll feel better, you’ll get a laugh, and you’ll really enjoy that second slider. Because you, my friend, need to eat something. You’re wasting away.