What Makes You Happy?

A couple hours into my day and my co-worker asked me if I had my eyebrows done.

“Yeah, I decided to wear a little makeup today”

“Special event?”

“Nope I just felt like feeling pretty”

I haven’t worn makeup except for special occasions for years – usually Christmas parties, New Year Eve celebration if we go out, or our anniversary. Partially it had to do with some sort of allergic reaction about 5 years ago that got so bad my eyes swelled shut. I had to stop using pretty much everything. So not only did I look like a poster child for domestic abuse, but I was no longer able to wear anything (on my face) that made me feel feminine. I had to get the most basic soaps, shampoos, and laundry detergent. No body sprays, no perfume, nothing.

For the most part, the reaction is out of my system – though we were never able to pin-point the ingredient(s) I was reacting to, it is possible I can have another reaction. The only good part to that is at least I’m in a big city that should have an allergist who can do the proper testing… should it come to that. I was only able to do an environmental testing in Courtenay – thank you, I already know I’m allergic to grass and tree pollen.

Now that I’m free of swollen shut eyes, I’ve been having the urge to wear makeup. Nothing outrageous or super heavy – I want to wear makeup without looking like I’m wearing makeup. Just a natural dewy look. For the past couple of years, I’ve resisted – what’s the point if I’m going to sweat it all off at the gym?

BUT! Here is a great chance to test makeup in a super humid environment – and if makeup can survive hot yoga, it can survive the humid summers of Ontario!

I’ve digressed a bit…

The other night I decided to do a good old fashion seduction – though not like my hubby needs any convincing! However, I came to a VERY important realization; I’m not going through all the shaving and sexy lingerie and hair and makeup for HIM…. I’m doing it for ME. I’m doing things and wearing things to make ME feel sexy. Not for my husband. He could care less what I wear – he’s just happy to have some sexy fun time!

But when do you do things for yourself to make yourself look or feel pretty? When was the last time you wore your “special perfume” for no reason other than just wearing it? When was the last time you wore a sexy matching underwear under basic jeans and t-shirt? When was the last time you bought yourself flowers? Or taken yourself out for dinner?

As women, it seems to be ingrained in our very nature that we need to do things for other people.

I call bull shit.

You SHOULD do things “just because” and for yourself. You don’t need someone else to do things for you or do things for someone else. Yeah, sure, it’s nice to wear one of your significant other’s favorite outfits or colors. Of wearing lingerie on a special night – but don’t do it because it’s expected of you. Do it because you want to do it for YOU!

Women have been expected for years – for DECADES! – to give and give and give. In a recent blog post “Don’t Put Your Value in Other People’s Hands”, I said: “As women, our self-worth is tied to how well we provide: If our children are happy, we’re a good mother. If our husband is happy, we’re a good wife.” We’re givers. We’re caretakers. We’re nurturers. We’re expected to keep a clean home, provide healthy home cooked meals, and if at the end of the day there’s some time, we MIGHT get a chance to do something for ourselves.

It is SO important as a woman that we do things for ourselves – because it makes us happy. For no other reason that we want to look good or feel good. It is completely pointless to stress about dishes not getting done, or laundry sitting for another day… the work NEVER ends! If you are constantly at the bottom of your list, you will never ever get there! Put yourself at the top of your list. Putting yourself first isn’t selfish. Doing what is right for you is not selfish. What’s selfish is people making constant demands for your attention – especially if they’re capable of doing stuff themselves. If you feel good and you take care of yourself, all areas of your life benefits.

So what makes you happy?

I found it really hard to think of things when I removed anything “diet and exercise” related… but I think I’ve narrowed it down.

I like feeling “pretty”. I think of being pretty as softness. Most people describe me as intense. Driven. Has that “something-something”. People seem to know I relate to the female villain vs the heroine. I can’t control how people view me (no matter how accurate) but I’ve been craving that feminine softness. Maybe because over the years I’d found myself “hardening” to life and everything I’ve been through the past decade but I’ve been starting to embrace my femininity and Goddess power. As I delve deeper into meditation and yoga, that inner Goddess is trying to come out and I’m embracing her as she emerges. She is wild and free; a child of moonlight and magic.

So what makes you happy?

Is it taking long bubble baths while listening to podcasts or language lessons? Is it taking a book to the park and sitting against a tree enjoying the peaceful environment? Is it collecting Converse shoes? Or wearing retro fashion? Or collecting tea spoons. Or salt and pepper shakers. Or tending a bonsai tree.

Whatever you decide, do something for YOU! Find something that brings you joy – whether it’s a style, a look, a hobby, or WHATEVER! Take time for you to cultivate that joy. Carve out time in your day – EVERY day – because you deserve it!

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