By Noelle Wong
It is a blessing for a child to hear that she is beautiful.
My family is small, just my parents, sister and me. My sister and I are three years apart. Ever since she was born, she received many praises from family members and strangers, on how cute and pretty she was. My mother too – my relatives always complimented how good my mother looked. There are two experiences I remember vividly. My mom, sister and I were at a department store. A pretty lady from one of the make up counters rushed out and said to my mother: your baby daughter is so pretty! Then she looked at me and said nothing. Another incident happened while we were having a dinner with family and relatives. One of my aunts said to me: Noelle, I hate to tell you this, but your mother is more beautiful than you.
These incidents had hurt the heart of a little child of no more than 6 years old.
It wasn’t that I didn’t have anything good within me. I had the brains – evident by my report cards from school. Yet brains rarely impress on first sight like beauty does. It is easy to be drawn to outer beauty. But what about the beauty we have within?
Comparisons of our looks continued throughout our adolescent and teenage years. Each one of them was painful. My mother, also drawn to outer beauty, has confirmed with others who said I was inferior in looks than my sister.
These experiences have prompted me to see beauty in all people. There must be something good in each of us. This is one of the reasons why I am now a personal image consultant, because there are elements in colour, clothing and communication skills that are harmonious to every individual. What is beauty anyway? To me, beauty is harmony. Nature is all about harmony. We can always draw inspirations from it. Take a look at the sky during daytime and night time; each flower; each blade of grass. Each is different, yet each is beautiful.
Yet, it is undeniable that people judge others in the first thirty seconds of meeting. We cannot go against this ingrained human nature and think people should not judge others by how they look, because in reality, they do. How can we make the best of what we have to bring out our outer beauty?
The key word is harmony. If your body is mainly straight and narrow, wear straight lines and stiff clothing. If you body has curves, wear curvy lines and soft, drapey clothes. If you are big, wear clothing with thick lines; if you are delicate, stay with thin lines. If your eyes, hair and skin tones are warm, wear warm colours. If cool, then wear colours that are blue based, rather than yellow based. Do not feel pressured by wearing what’s current. There are elements we can incorporate into our clothes and make up to keep our images current, but we do not have to be a slave to fashion and make up. Just pick out elements that are harmonious to you, and ignore the rest.
Most important, see beauty everywhere, each person you meet. From this you will appreciate your own beauty even more. If you are a mother with a daughter, see her inner and outer beauty, and tell her how beautiful and wonderful she is. It is a great blessing to a child. This is part of her foundation in self esteem.
What will you do today to see your own beauty?
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