notes on elegance #3: respect

today’s topic is broad and i would love to hear your thoughts.

respect is a priority for many people in their relationships. however, i’ve found that most of the time, i tend to forget about self-respect and self-worth as well as respect towards the environment and strangers.

self-respect, to me, is the foundation on which one is able to build sincere respect towards others. the inner dialogue is extremely important and i’ve found myself treating others just like i treat myself. most of the time, i consider myself an accomplished person but some days, i just can’t seem to be able to believe that.

i’m not quite sure who is to blame for implementing negative thoughts about my looks, my education, and my quirks, but it’s sometimes not a pretty picture. when i’m feeling like this (which, thank goodness, is not most of the time), i tend to have a short temper towards others and sometimes, even say hurtful things.

i encourage myself and others to train a positive mind. in order to do that, i try to have faith in everything. sometimes i feel like the news, documentaries and articles tend to make us discouraged and generally negative towards society. however, to be aware of a problem does not mean that it must continue to remain a problem, but rather encourages critical thinking and a drive for positive changes.

for inspiration, i’ve always been interested in what my faith as well as other faiths have to offer. philosophy is also another good source of positive critical thinking and it’s a priority for me to always feel like there’s hope.

it’s when i have faith in something that i start to feel present. and in feeling present i respect both myself, others and the environment.

by being more respectful, i’ve found myself to live in moderation. eating less, lounging less, buying less and arguing less. it’s a really hard thing to do, but i feel that it’s extremely worthwhile.

respect is of utmost importance when cultivating elegance. respect brings forth compassion and good etiquette (without studying emily post, although i find her fascinating!). respect is a will to learn and let things be.

that said, how can respect affect an elegant appearance and lifestyle?

– by respecting oneself, good hygiene, elegant deportment and style as well as a good diet is a simple affair

– by respecting others, manners and politeness comes naturally

– by respecting the environment, it is possible to minimise waste and practice gratefulness

 

please do share your thoughts on the subject!

wishing you all the best,

xoxo

marie

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notes on elegance #1

Elegance is usually confused with superficiality, fashion, lack of depth. This is a serious mistake: human beings need to have elegance in their actions and in their posture because this word is synonymous with good taste, amiability, equilibrium and harmony.

– Paul Coelho

hello everyone!

to follow up on my last blog post, i wanted to create a new series titled “notes on elegance”.

in today’s whirlwind of a world, it’s sometimes difficult to take a moment and evaluate your relationships and interactions with others.

i’ve always been a sensitive person, which as most of you may know, can be a very good or bad thing. i’ve noticed that i tend to get bothered easily if people are rude, aggressive, or hurtful, but also can feel extremely happy to find kindred spirits and see positive and generous actions.

i’ve also noticed that i haven’t been the best example. lately i’ve been focusing on trying to find balance in both my life and relationships. i’m learning to be patient, compassionate and loving with myself and others. it’s a hard process to go through, especially since people and society tend to be unforgiving and have high expectations.

since i love to make lists and categorise, i’ve come up with areas of my life that i feel need brushing up on:

– self-respect: faith, good diet habits, good sleep habits, exercising, positive self-image

– compassion towards others: improved listening skills, appropriate image (clothes, hair and makeup), openness when dealing with people with different philosophies

the paul coelho quote which opened this post seems to sum up these categories perfectly. the elegance which is associated with fashion and beauty may be part of an elegant image, but does not make a person elegant. i wish to be kind towards myself and others and in the future posts, i’ll be going the elements listed above and share how i am working on improving them.

i hope you can join me in this journey and please share your thoughts on the subject!

xoxo,

marie

on elegance and refinement

hello everyone! it’s been a while! hope you’re well and that you’re blessed with beautiful weather.

today i wanted to write about a subject that has been fascinating to me for a while now.

it’s not a surprise that in our day-to-day lives we encounter a lot of different people. that in itself is a wonderful thing, especially considering that it’s now possible to connect with people all over the world.

now, i don’t know about you, but i feel sometimes uneasy in social situations. i’ve always been one to always try to be as considerate to everyone, even if sometimes it’s difficult (telemarketers being a prime example). i found myself to be very critical towards strangers and people i know because i found them rude, inconsiderate, vulgar and even unhygienic. i didn’t like to see myself think and talk about people in that way. that’s not who i was brought up to be, and that’s not who i want to be.

i’ve decided to embark on a journey of personal refinement (like a lot of people). and i’ve encountered a few interesting observations along the way. and since i love lists, here are the top observations i’ve made about myself that i’d like to correct:

1. i talk loudly. and fast. and sometimes cut people off mid-sentence.

that’s something i’ve noticed seems to annoy quite a lot of people. especially when discussing something important. i’ve recently been in a difficult situation at work and found myself to be quite defensive. i noticed i did all of these and that i wasn’t being respectful towards the person i was talking to.

2. i don’t look and act as feminine as i feel.

i think that being overly feminine is somewhat looked down upon in certain social realms. i’m sure someone would have great fun writing an academic article on the subject! i don’t think it’s realistic for me to look “perfect” (ie. flawless hair, makeup and outfit) all the time, but i do notice that slouching, and some misshapen clothes make me feel not as good as i would want to.

3. i don’t always pay attention

whether it be with a chatty stranger or a good friend, i sometimes find myself not listening to people properly. when i realise someone is doing that to me, it makes me feel sad, and sometimes insecure. i hope to find a genuine interest towards people and be compassionate.

4. swearing

as a teenager, i swore all. the. time. my mother despised it, and i would sometimes slip up in front of people i wouldn’t want to swear in front of (a teacher or a cute guy would be good examples). i think i picked up swearing from my social group as a teen and now that i don’t see them anymore, it really doesn’t suit who i’ve become and how i want to be seen. this bad habit is nearly gone, i hardly ever swear. but when i do, i feel very disappointed, especially if it’s done casually without being mad or upset.

5. closing myself off from people

i realised how absent minded and closed off people looked on public transport. i try to limit mindless activities like checking my phone because i feel “bored”, listening to music on a portable device and crossing my arms. i also try to avoid doing any kind of personal grooming in public. i feel that i can take my own time later in the washroom and fix my hair, makeup or whatever else is wrong. being focused on oneself in public sends the message that you’re in your bubble and wished not to be disturbed. at least, it does to me. i love spontaneous conversation and i try to be in the moment as much as possibe.

i hope this post was interesting to you! do share your thoughts in the comments.

hugs,

marie