I have just returned from a fantastic five days in the beautiful Devon countryside where I followed one of my passions, dressmaking. I was learning pattern cutting – a method by which you can design your own clothes and make a pattern to your own measurements, instead of making something from a bought pattern and then finding that it doesn’t fit properly.
One of the first things we had to do was strip down to our undergarments and measure each other in pairs. The stripping down was reasonably ok because most women are used to being at the swimming pool or gym and seeing other women getting undressed, and actually when faced with the task we just got on with it. So, a bit daunting because we had only just met but not too scary.
Once we were measuring each other I noticed all the negative self-talk going around the room: “my boobs are too big” or “I have a saggy this that or the other”. It was quite noticeable and continued throughout the remainder of the course as we made our patters and, ultimately, our bespoke dresses.
I have been aware of my own negative self-talk over the years but I found myself shocked by what I was hearing. I guess it was because we were seven women, in a fairly confined space, looking at ourselves closely and it was relentless!
The facilitator of the course said that her son had been in a workshop previously and had noticed this too and had asked “Mum, do women do this all the time, ‘cos a room full of guys wouldn’t do that?”
Why ARE we so hard on ourselves. Why DO we find it so hard to accept ourselves as we are? It’s absolutely ok to want to improve ourselves, I have no problem with that, but why do we have to be so harsh on ourselves whilst we do it?
Are we critical of each other and therefore critical of ourselves. Is the negative we see in others a projection of what we dislike about ourselves?
Let us women come together and say “I am OK, I am doing the best I can, I am enough right now and I am just unfinished.” OR let’s really go for it and say “I am beautiful, gorgeous and talented.”- who are you not to be?