Through observation and personal experience, I have noticed that beauty is not specific to gender, age, or color. It is crazy how two people from opposite sides of the world can share the same intrinsic values as if they grew up side by side. Male or female, young or old, introverted or extroverted… it does not matter. The concept of beauty is way too abstract and relative to be topped with a sweet little bow, but I have come up with four measures of beauty that seem solid in my own understanding. Please feel free to let me know if you agree, disagree, or have any comments on my four measures. I have interviewed four lovely women who I believe to represent these four cornerstones of beauty magnificently. They each possess and radiate every single one of the qualities I mention below, but for the sake of trying not to make this post into a novel, I focus on one quality for each of them.
Beauty is not solely based on the sparkle of someone’s smile, the smoothness of their skin, or the curvature of their body. Beauty is comprised of the refreshing qualities that provoke the strange, yet comforting, desire to draw near to someone. It is someone’s subconscious ability to reassure, inspire, and connect with another person merely through an invisible force that radiates within. Beauty is found in a person’s mysterious ability to tug at sensations of joy, respect, grief, and love. In general what I am trying to say is most forms of beauty cannot be seen, but felt.
4 Measures of Beauty
- How well you treat people who cannot do a single thing for you.
My mom would always tell me that you should treat the janitor and CEO of a company with the exact same respect. It’s easy to be kind and polite to people who can give you something in return, but it takes a genuine heart to lift up those who can never repay you. I know we don’t want to admit that we tend to be our most pleasant selves in the company of people who seem to be of higher authority or prestige than us, but it is often true. When I see a person who takes time out of their schedule to assist someone who they they might not even know and who cannot give anything in return just out of the kindness of their heart, I know I am standing in the presence of a true gem.
Vanessa Trejo and I went to high school together and if there is one thing I can say about her, it is that anyone in her presence will feel welcomed. She is incredibly outgoing and is so friendly to everyone she meets. I always knew Vanessa had a really kind heart, but it came even more apparent when she began to utilize her passion for health and fitness to help those around her. Every day I would get on Instagram and would see her workout videos, fitness tips, inspirational messages, and bible verses. I would feel lighter because the positivity she so freely gave out filled me with motivation and peace. I love how she always promotes inner peace, self acceptance, and self growth. Vanessa has really gone the extra mile to put her self out there to help hundreds of people. Even if those people are never able to express their gratitude, I want Vanessa to know just how big of an impact she is making.
It is a whole other level of grace when a person desires to put someone else’s needs above their own while simultaneously treating their own well being as something sacred.
- How gracefully you pick up the pieces of yourself after you’ve been shattered.
Let’s face it, every single one of us can be a hot mess from time to time. As hard as I try to not let my insecurities and anxieties get the best of me, they always creep up and knock me to the ground. Perfection is out of reach no matter how desperately we strive for it. I have to constantly remind myself this because I tend to be harsh on myself up when I screw up. It is a beautiful thing when someone can be hurt, discouraged, or even traumatized and they are able to forgive themselves, move forward, and even help others in the process. Humility is the willingness to fall apart so that you can take inventory on what qualities and tendencies serve you and which ones you need to let go of. As a society, we are taught that punishment is necessary to learn. When we are going through something, no one is harder on us than ourselves. Its so rare to witness someone take their pain and transform it into something empowering.
My incredible friend Kelsey Purcell immediately comes to my mind when I think of strength. She amazes me everyday with how deeply she allows herself to feel (both joy and pain). Kelsey is a loving, positive, welcoming, intelligent, and all around lovely woman of God. This past summer, Kelsey released an E-Book to the public that exposed the darkest time of her life. The book, Refused to be Silenced (https://refusetobesilenced.com/), is about her abusive relationship, the psychological damaged caused by it, and how she got out. Her writing is excruciatingly raw and relatable, which is probably why it has been downloaded more than 5000 times. As if this act of courage wasn’t awe-inspiring enough, Kelsey released the book as a FREE download so that she could reach as many people as possible. Kelsey’s soul desire was to help other women who may have found themselves in a similar situation. The grace and class that Kelsey carries herself with even after her difficult past inspires me everyday.
- How willing you are to be truly seen
When I come across someone who is unapologetically themselves, I automatically am drawn to them. I want to hear what they have to say and receive what they have to offer because everything about them is original. It is refreshing to see someone else be open about not having it all together. It’s easy to get caught up in comparing ourselves to others so when I am able to connect with someone on a raw human level about things that aren’t so pretty, it feels like I am finally being seen. A quality that is so attractive to me is a person’s ability to admit they are not perfect. Being happy in your own skin despite your shortcomings and flaws is the ultimate sign of confidence. People like that literally radiate strength and warmth.
Someone who is an incredible example of living in their own authenticity is Alexis Metoyer. She is a very talented photographer and has her own lingerie business. Her creativity is mind blowing and what I find so inspiring is that she uses that creativity to promote positivity and self acceptance in others. What I think is so special about Alexis is that you can see her personality as clear as day through her work. She’s not afraid to take risks and try new endeavors because her intrinsic sense of self confidence is so strong. In her interview, she mentioned that a struggle she faces is not feeling good enough. That was a really impactful statement to me because it made me realize that even the most open, successful, and happy people struggle with inner demons too. We all do, so go strive for your goals even with them present. Nothing shuts up my inner demons quicker than doing things that frighten and further me at the same time. I had the privilege of getting my photos taken by Alexis recently and I’m so happy that I did because it was nice to be in the presence of someone who lives life so unapologetically.
It feels nice to be around someone who will not judge you because they themselves understand that imperfections should not only be accepted, but also celebrated.
- How much confidence you have in your own abilities to achieve what you want.
Nothing says beauty quite like the characteristic of drive and belief in oneself. Have you ever been in close proximity with someone who was so determined and persistent that you yourself started to feel more motivated just from soaking in their vibes? Ambition is contagious, and I know that I love getting second hand motivation from being surrounded with goal oriented people who will stop at nothing to achieve their dreams.
My friend, Charlize Figueroa, has a persistence and drive unlike anything I have ever seen before. She is actually the person who inspired to create my own blog. She is a successful blogger ( https://charlizef.com/ )and even created Blog Club at Texas State from scratch. The amount of work necessary to start a club (and a very successful one at that) is too much to even comprehend, but Charlize managed to build something incredible even with everything else she has going own. Her dedication to what she is passionate about is what makes her so special. Charlize has an unwavering belief in herself and in her ablilities that make others, including myself, push further than they though they ever could. She strives 24/7 to create an environment in which people can express themselves, feel accepted, and cultivate their future goals. Because of Charlize, I feel more confident to trust in my own abilities as a writer and share my content with the world. For that, I want to say thank you.
These are my interpretations of beauty. Thank you to the beautiful souls who helped me create this post. I encourage you to follow them on Instagram and check out their websites because a little positivity, creativity, and reassurance can greatly enhance our human experience. I am very blessed to be surrounded with countless people who possess these qualities and so many more. There are infinite other measures of beauty so please comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your own thoughts and opinions on what makes a person beautiful. Thank you for reading and responding. Remember that each one of you has an innate worthiness that exemplifies beauty in its truest form.
Until next time,