Any woman can be beautiful if she has the resources to take care of her basic needs, inside and out. Despite the narrow view of beauty that popular culture conveys, every person finds beauty in different things. Chart your own course for beauty and let your inner goddess emerge.


Lay the Groundwork for Beauty

Love yourself so your beautiful qualities can show through. If you have problems with self-esteem, or if you suffer from depression or another problem that interferes with your love for yourself, treat this first.

Put your needs first. Many women place others’ needs before their own because of their roles as mothers and wives. However, you can’t fulfill other people’s needs, not even your children’s, unless you meet your own needs first.

Develop empathy and compassion. These qualities help keep you grounded, making sure that you don’t become self-absorbed as you’re laying the groundwork for your most beautiful self.

Take care of yourself physically. It’s hard to be beautiful inside and out if you’re tired, malnourished, out of shape or otherwise unhealthy. Also keep up with basic grooming tasks to keep your skin and hair as healthy as possible.

Socialize only with people who support you and make you feel good about who you are. End relationships with those who are critical, unsupportive or abusive, and surround yourself with those who bring you joy. Your beautiful self emerges when those around you cultivate it.

Engage in activities that you find mentally, emotionally and spiritually rewarding. Volunteer for a favorite cause, hike in a beautiful natural area, participate in lively conversation, attend worship services or take some time out of your day for meditation.

Create a Beauty Plan

Write your personal definition of beauty, including both appearance and internal qualities. As you create your definition, think about what you personally find beautiful, not what is considered beautiful in popular culture or by others. It’s easiest to write the definition as a list of qualities.

Take inventory of your own beauty by comparing yourself to the list. You probably won’t have all of the qualities of your definition, but you’re certain to have a few if you’re being honest with yourself. If you can’t take inventory of your own beauty objectively, have a friend tell you which beautiful qualities from your list you already embody.

List the beautiful qualities that you don’t yet have, and write a brief plan for creating them in yourself. For example, if you lack confidence, you can work on boosting it; if your posture makes you look tired, you can invest in posture-improving bodywork. If you can’t acquire the beautiful quality, simply skip it and admire it in others.

Tackle one or two of your beauty goals at a time. Give yourself a clear set of steps and a realistic time line in which to acquire each beautiful quality. Include rewards or celebrations for meeting your goals.

Keep a journal tracking your progress. If you’re working on external beauty, take photographs to document changes in your body or appearance. If you’re working on internal beauty, record actions you take that reflect the quality you’re working towards obtaining.

Encourage other close female friends to create their own beauty plans and meet on a regular basis to give each other encouragement and to celebrate each others’ successes.

Tips

  • When you define what external attributes make someone beautiful, focus on real world beauty rather than the beauty you see in celebrities or magazine photos. Think about the people you’ve interacted with today to create a more realistic and personal image of beauty.

  • Cosmetic surgery can be a useful tool for increasing confidence, but it won’t necessarily increase your beauty unless you’re correcting a disfigurement. Use it as a last resort rather than as a first option.

  • External beauty isn’t dependent upon weight or upon age. A woman can be beautiful at any weight and at any age if she takes care of her body and positive internal attributes like compassion, confidence and kindness.