So you start a blog, on or of Lolita Fashion. But let's say that you're not exactly a part of it yet, probably because of lack of: inspiration, motivation, and/or confidence in yourself. (Not sure if this is Lolita-Related, but since my 'blog' is supposed to be Lolita-related...)donLoving yourself more isn't always something that you can just decide to do one day and that's that, it's a lot of little things that happen over time and one day you will all of the sudden realize that you are 100% OK with yourself and you can't imagine why you ever thought otherwise. It's something a lot of people, both in and out of Lolita, struggle with. Sometimes it's the very nature of Lolita that causes people to struggle with these issues. I mean, you can't exactly blend in with the crowd when you're wearing the frills, it takes a lot of self confidence to be able to wear the look and feel comfortable in it. And the more you feel comfortable and confident the better it looks on you.
How do I start? I'm pretty much a new Lolita, only knowing about it doesn't count, I haven't dressed the part yet - since I'm a big girl, and I find it difficult to get the money to do so. But I keep trying, yet here I am still. I had it once, but then I lost interest because I thought I wasn't good enough for Lolita.
Because I am big, and I think I am ugly, etc...
Maybe what I really mean to ask is this: How can you find the confidence in yourself, despite smothering yourself in hate? How can you love yourself outside of Lolita enough to love yourself while in Lolita? Being confident.
Sorry for the TL;DR, it seems I always end up doing that... and not sure if this has been asked before.
Learning to love yourselfThis first section is just the baby steps towards loving yourself and, thus, gaining confidence in yourself. It's difficult to go through everyday life without at least a little love for yourself and a lot of confidence, it's even harder to go through life in a pink frilly dress and a cake hat on your head if you lack both love for yourself and self confidence.
- Don't criticize yourself. The first step is the most important, and that is to stop criticizing yourself. Don't allow yourself to use any harsh words that you may feel about yourself. And I don't just mean using the words vocally, or in a half-hearted joking excuse, but internally too. Whenever you catch yourself thinking these things, stop yourself before you can even finish the thought.
- Don't compare yourself to others. Don't feel as if you have to make yourself into a clone of the "perfect" person. You don't have to have someone else's figure, someone else's friends, someone else's clothes, or someone else's money to be happy. Instead of focusing on living someone else's life, focus on ways you can improve upon yourself.
- Discover what you love about yourself. Make a list! Write it down and keep it somewhere special, where you will see it often, like posted to your mirror, or folded up in your wallet. Throughout the day take notice of the things you do particularly well and add them to the list, you'll soon discover that you have many good qualities and reason enough to love yourself.
- Praise yourself. When you complete tasks or notice that you do something particularly well, congratulate yourself on it. Even if it's something simple like keeping a room tidy or finish some rather difficult homework. Learn to notice where and just how much you succeed.
- Write yourself a love note. It might sound silly but write a note to yourself and include what you like most about you. It can be in a diary, a letter sealed up in an envelope that you keep somewhere secret, an email set to send it to yourself in a few months (try FutureMe.org), or even a collage of pictures from days you are proud of and of people who love you.
Gaining confidence, especially when wearing Lolita
Confidence is a big part of learning to love yourself, and vice versa. Especially when you are wearing such an attention grabbing fashion like Lolita. Lolita often forces you to be the center of attention, and if you don't have the confidence to go with the attention, it could make wearing Lolita a very uncomfortable experience.
- Wear Lolita around the house. If you have the dress that you've always wanted, but don't yet feel comfortable wearing it in public, then don't let it just sit in the back of your closet! Wear it in the privacy of your own house, even if you only ever wear it in your own bedroom for an hour or two. Don't let the dresses intimidate you! They're just a pile of frills and lace until you put them on and make them shine.
- Treat others as you would like to be treated. I don't just mean being polite, but being friendly as well. Smile at people, make conversation, complement others, let yourself laugh at jokes. Be as friendly to others as you would like them to be to you and you will soon find that your friendliness has rubbed off on others!
- Accept compliment. Don't respond to a complement with an excuse or an argument! Say thank you, smile back, and be aware that you did something that someone liked so much that they took a moment of their time to tell you so.
- Ignore unwarranted criticism or dirty looks. Nobody asked for their opinion, so it doesn't count. So just ignore mean comments and dirty looks, simple as that. The opinions of rude strangers on the street shouldn't matter to you anyways since you're not here to please them.
Being OK with who you are
Be it body image or the way you look, you have really got to be OK with exactly who you are in order to be really happy with yourself. You don't have to be perfect (who is?!), you just have to be comfortable with yourself.
- Find a role model. Don't get this confused with comparing yourself to others! Teach yourself to notice all different kinds of beauty, not just the slender, highly airbrushed kind. Keep an eye out for people who you feel are a bit like you, in either looks or body type or whatever, and who really work it. Don't try to emulate them, but instead simply think about what makes them so fabulous. Do your own thing while you keep it in the back of your mind that there's other people out there, people who are in some ways just like you, who are fabulous, so there's absolutely nothing keeping you from being just as fabulous!
- Learn to dress for your body type. Wear clothes that fit and learn what flatters you. If you are wearing clothes that fit well and make you look good you will feel much better about yourself. If you are plus sized, check out these tips and tricks for dressing flatteringly. Once you learn what looks best on you, you can't help but feel great in it. It's true that sometimes you have to give up on certain styles or cuts of dresses, but it's worth it to look your best.
- Take good care of yourself. This includes simple things like keeping your hair clean, your skin as clear as you can, and other things that can usually be solved with good old fashioned soap and water. It also includes trying to eat right and giving in to a little bit of exercise. Of course, you don't have to drop half your weight to be healthy, but eating foods that are good for you, going for the occasional walk, or not being afraid to run around a bit and get your heart pumping are bound to make you feel better. The more you take care of yourself the less lethargic and generally "blah" you will feel.
- Make yourself feel pretty. Of course, you don't need to wear makeup to make yourself look pretty, but if you feel like makeup would help, to brighten your eyes, even out your skin tone, or cover up some blemishes, than why not give it a shot? Try something very simple like mascara, a neutral eyeshadow, and a bit of concealer where you need it and it could really change the way you see yourself. In addition to that, make it a practice to dress up a little bit more than you normally would. Even if that just means switching from tee shirts to button ups and wearing a cute necklace every now and then. Of course, "pretty" is subjective, don't feel like you need to wear a pink button up and pink lip gloss to feel pretty. If you're idea of pretty is something else entirely, then go for it. If you say to hell with pretty and want to instead look glamorous, mysterious, handsome, androgynous, or whatever, then go for that instead!
- Enjoy what you have. You might think you will only be happy with currently unobtainable things, such as brand Lolita clothes, but instead focus on enjoying what you have while you save up for whatever it is that you want. Look for elegant pieces that you have already that you can wear to give yourself a frill fix. Check out this post on dressing elegantly outside of Lolita.
Ah, the rewards! The reason why any of us do anything, right XD? Don't be afraid to treat yourself every now and then, after all you deserve it.
- Have a "spa day". I really don't like the term "Spa day", it reminds me of stock photos of middle aged women having generic fun while wearing facial masks. But I couldn't think of a better word XD Dedicate a day to pampering and beautifying yourself. It could be a day every weekend, a day every month, or they can even be spontaneous pick-me-ups. If you want to go all out, and you have the cash, visit a nail salon and get a manicure, pedicure, eyebrow waxing, the whole shebang. Or go out and get your hair professionally styled. Let someone else worry about making you look your best for the day, all you have to do is sit back and relax. Or, if going out and doing it is not your thing, spend a whole day in your PJs, pop in your favorite CD, and do it yourself! Learn to give yourself a manicure and look up some recipes for facial masks to try out. Consider buying a special perfume or lotion to use on your spa days, since scent is the strongest scent tied to memory you'll soon start to associate the scent with feeling good.
- Reward yourself. You don't have to promise yourself a new Angelic Pretty dress every week, but small rewards for when you know you did well on something will really motivate you and lift your spirits. They don't even have to be something you have to buy for yourself, but little things like taking a couple hours off work at the end of the week to relax or leaving the chores for a day to go out with some friends.
- Do something you love. Whatever you're passionate about or have always wanted to give it a go, then do it! And do it often. This can be anything from making time in the evening to read your favorite books all over again, to signing up for classes to learn something new.
- Set aside a personal gift fund. Get a box or a bank and start putting a small amount of money in it on occasion, either fill it with the spare change in your pocket at the end of the day, or set aside a few dollars a week to go into it. At the end of the month, check to see how much you have saved up and spend it on yourself! Even $30 can get you a Lolita hairbow, a pair of lace cuffs, or a brand logo necklace on the EGL sales community with some clever hunting.