Exploring Elegance: A 90 Day Challenge
I have always truly desired to be a classy and elegant woman. I don’t mean rich and fancy, I mean true elegance as demonstrated by women like Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, and Kate Middleton. I love all the old movies and how elegant and glamorous and put together the women always look. I always admired their ability to always look great! Now don’t get me wrong, I do not think I am homely or awkward looking, but I have definitely always identified as a jeans and t-shirts kind of girl that is sporty/athletic and maybe even a bit of a tomboy, though not as much as when I was in elementary school. I have always been drawn to and desired to look, behave and feel more polished, graceful and refined.
I’ve always struggled between this desire for elegance and my self image, thinking that they were in such stark contrast, there is no way I could turn from who I am to who I want to be. I also fear the looks and comments of those around me, thinking this would be such a drastic transformation that others would call me out on being inauthentic or an imposter. As I have struggled with this dichotomy, I wonder if really what I am doing is being afraid to be my authentic self…maybe I am both at the same time. Why can’t I be elegant in jeans or even my athletic clothes for that matter. So I decided to research it. And by research, I mean search Pinterest. Well, that is at least where the research started. What I discovered was that true elegance is not just the way you look but a way of being, a mindset.
There are lots of of blog posts about “How to Be More Elegant”, “100 Ways to Be More Elegant” and similar titles, and most had some great practical advice for women and men alike. I found a lot of the posts were intimately mingled with etiquette and manners while others were focused on style and fashion (though never trends). And the ones that resonated with me the most were focused on kindness, respect and consideration for self and others, gentleness and grace.
So instead of re-inventing the wheel and listing my take on “The Ways to Be Elegant”, I decided I am going to hold myself accountable to being authentic and leaning in to who I want to be with a 90 Day Challenge. I am not telling any of my family, friends, staff or coworkers, except on here of course. Instead I will start trying to implement the changes I am making to myself and my behavior and document it here each week. I will tell you what I tried, what was successful, what was unsuccessful and what I learn. All in the hopes that I get a little closer to being who I want and hopefully inspiring others to be their authentic selves too!
So let me know, am I the only one who wants to be more elegant? Please also share with me if you struggle with who you want to be and who you think you are.
UPDATE: I did work on this challenge and made some amazing changes in my life but I didn’t write about a single one and life swept me away. I actually just remembered this post and decided to revisit after my wedding a few weeks ago. All the years I have desired more elegance in my life, I was told by my 14-year-old daughter after the wedding that everything was beautiful and elegantly done, just like I am. So even though I may struggle with feeling elegant enough, I have apparently embodied the elegant version of myself enough for others to notice and I now choose to believe it about myself. Isn’t it funny how we can be trying so hard to become or complete something that we miss it when it happens? How fascinating!