Real Girls Guide to Rockin’ Body Jewelry

body jewelry, lariat necklace

I gasped when I first saw Jennifer Aniston on the red carpet in her structured suit, bare chest and, yes, that amazing Amrit Jewelry body bling. It was incredibly sexy and simultaneously sophisticated. I was hooked.

Jennifer Aniston body jewelry

Aniston wears a lariat necklace in the first image and a body chain in the second. A lariat style necklace is a necklace that normally has no specific clasp on either end. Body chains, however, may clasp around waist, arms or other areas of the body.

While I wanted to emulate the look, I had to face a couple of realities. Ms. Aniston was wearing fine jewelry, which isn’t optimal for an experiment. Not to mention most women, including myself, don’t have Jennifer Aniston’s, er, assets.

Luckily my friend Anita Mawji, designer of Sage & Stone has been making lariat necklaces and body chains for years. She’s committed to creating affordable, high-quality body jewelry. (Lariats and body chains range from $60-$190.)

Lariat Necklace Style Rx

Here’s what I discovered in the process:

1. It’s impossible to wear a bra with this look. Celebs use boob tape, but I didn’t have any and was too lazy to drive across town, so I settled for a couple pieces of duct tape (works!) but be careful with removal (ouch!). Here is a tutorial I wish I’d read beforehand.

2. Layering and mismatching is a yes! I had fun piling on different strands, even mixing gold and silver.

3. This look is just as fun going down the back.

lariat necklace back

body chain back

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The Wardrobe Detox

green juice and wardrobe hanger

It’s springtime, and with it comes the energy of renewal and rebirth. The concept of spring-cleaning isn’t a new one. It’s an intuitive process, which has become a cultural norm for a reason.

As spiritual beings having a human experience, it’s easy to become bogged down on the physical plane by our “stuff.” I constantly work to be in harmony with the material world. To use and value the objects around me and to make them meaningful, everything of a material nature can have a spiritual significance if we value it as such.

One of the biggest toxic dumping grounds is our closet. We may be able to clean out a junk drawer or organize our fridge, but most of us have a closet filled with items that don’t fully represent our current selves. I cannot tell you how many people I’ve worked with who do not wear half (or more) of the clothes they have in their closets!

Are you one of them? I invite you to ask yourself a few questions:

Do you have any clothes in your closet that don’t fit?
Is there anything you haven’t worn once in the past year?
Is there anything that’s stained, ripped, or damaged in your drawers or closet?

If you’ve answered yes to any of the above, it’s likely time for a wardrobe detox.

A wardrobe detox is getting rid of what no longer serves you, so you have the space to welcome in new energy that meets you where you are, today. It’s a spiritual process. What we wear and own reflects how we feel about ourselves on the inside.

Take a minute with that concept; even better take a peek into your closet.

It’s not easy, but it’s important. What does the state of your closet (and drawers, etc.) tell you about your relationship to yourself? Is it messy? Beautiful? Current? Does it reflect the way you take care of and value yourself?

When I looked into my closet I saw a lot of ways in which I am holding onto the past and not tending to my needs, so in other words, it’s time to make some changes. I start my detox by coming up with an intention that will support what I am creating. For instance:

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Getting Grounded

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Birk3

Sole Prescription Pharmacy Dr. Shannon Bindler, M.A., C.E.C.
12/16/2017
Feeling a bit out there? A great way to ground your energy is to slip your feet into pair of Birkenstocks. The sandal’s footbeds are made of cork and natural latex and contoured in the shape of a healthy foot. The shoe is famous for keeping one’s spine and legs in alignment. The soles actually mold to your feet, making them arguably one of history’s most comfortable sandal designs. A classic Birkenstock is characterized by two leather straps that secure with large square buckles; however, the classic sole is available paired with a variety of uppers including clogs and t-straps.
Symptoms
A Birkenstock is prescribed to individuals suffering from one or more of the following feelings or experiences: scattered thoughts or energy, feeling anxious or worried, unfocused and easily distracted, not present.
Warnings
Wear may instigate a clear head and steady emotional state. Prolonged use may create realistic, satisfied and rational outlooks—which may bring pie-in-the-sky floaters back to planet Earth.

Being grounded means being present. When we’re grounded we are focused on whatever task is before us at that moment. Not focused on future fantasy, worry, or magical thinking. It also means not concentrating on the past with regret or upset. Being ungrounded can show up as feeling anxious, overwhelmed, and unfocused.

Have you ever parked your car and realized that you didn’t remember getting to your destination? It usually happens to me when I’m focused on something that’s about to happen or running a negative story of something that occurred in the past. Whatever I was distracted by was clearly not the task at hand (nor a brilliant way to drive through Los Angeles during rush-hour).

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Birk1Vintage fringe leather discovered at the bohemian paradise Tavin Boutique. Read an epic story about the fringe leather jacket my mother used to own and how it mortified me.

When we are ungrounded we lose our power. It can feel like a physical sensation of feeling lightheaded, or even airheaded, “Ummm, like, what was I doing?” All of us get ungrounded at times (and use the word “like” as a vernacular pause, but that’s an entirely different article…). These are a few of the tricks I use to bring myself into alignment when I’m feeling off:

Become aware of your body. Sit or lie down and focus on each piece of your body, starting at your head, down your arms and torso, all the way to your feet. When we bring our focus to our physical selves, it helps us become more present.

Bring awareness to the chatter in your mind. Have you ever noticed yourself running a story over and over in your head or thinking about moments that are upsetting? Sometimes the simple act of redirecting our thoughts to what’s happening at the current moment can change our entire mood. Repeating a positive mantra, affirmation, or intention can also be helpful if you notice that you’re having a difficult time remaining present.

BW-2.0Birk2Tunic by Isabel Marant, vintage beaded necklaces from Double RL & Co by Ralph Lauren.

Get your bare feet on the ground and/or wear Birkenstocks. Y’all know how much I love shoes, but physical contact with the Earth can really help us ground our energy. Kick off your heels and walk around on some grass or sand for a few minutes. Wiggle your toes and feel a connection with the Earth. Okay, maybe we can’t all walk around barefoot all day, so if you are feeling particularly ungrounded I highly recommend wearing a Birkenstock sandal (or one of the many versions that are available this season, from Zara to Givenchy). This type of sandal is designed to mold to the shape of your foot while providing stability, balance, and a physical sense of groundedness.

Drink water and eat. Hunger and thirst can exacerbate an ungrounded state. I know I get particularly cranky and unfocused when I’m hungry. It’s best to avoid low blood sugar in the first place by eating regular healthy meals and snacks.

Carry a crystal in your pocket, handbag, or wear as jewelry. All you couture hippies have permission to pull out your secret quartz stashes. Crystals have powerful cleansing and grounding properties, and I think they are pretty awesome-looking as jewelry, too.

BW-4.0 endThe classic tan Birkenstock sandal is the queen of cultivating a grounded energy.

Center yourself. Bring your attention to your energy, body, and mind. Visualize yourself connected from head to toe and rooted all the way to the Earth. See yourself whole and harmonized. I like to envision white light surrounding my entire being. I’m going to go super woo-woo and tell you about how I sometimes imagine that the water coming out of my shower is actually activated with cleansing white light. (That may have been a bit too much information, and you’ll never read my blog again without thinking about me taking a shower in my “special water.” A risk I was willing to take… you’re welcome.)

When we’re in a grounded, steady state we are able to be the best versions of ourselves. Aren’t we lucky that the Birkenstock sandal is having another moment in the sun this summer? I have a pair on right now!

How do you keep yourself grounded?

 

*Photography by Jade Loop, retouching by Sesha NYC.

Mom in the Middle

Arms_Finalsmgoddess lakshmi devi www.picturesgallery.in photos (6)Shakti is the concept, or personification, of divine feminine creative power, sometimes referred to as ‘The Great Divine Mother’ in Hinduism. She is often depicted with 4-6 arms balancing different elements.

Sole Prescription Pharmacy Dr. Shannon Bindler, M.A., C.E.C.
12/16/2017
The ballet flat is prescribed for individuals who want to experience a greater sense of balance in their life. The design was modeled after a soft dance shoe. They are traditionally flexible with a hard sole and no (or very thin) heel. Some styles feature a decorative string throat, reminiscent of the ballet slipper's drawstring.
Symptoms
Signs of erratic behavior or mood swings, extreme or irrational thoughts, imbalance in how time and/or energy are spent, instability (emotional, spiritual, physical, or mental), lack of harmony between life roles (work, family, projects, etc.).
Warnings
May cause steadiness, a state of equilibrium, emotional and mental stability and centeredness. Extremists beware: continued wear may create an even disposition.

Mother’s Day always makes me reflect on my parenting abilities and style. A friend of mine recently wrote a piece called I’m Not the Mother I Thought I’d Be, and I have to say that I’m not either. I wonder if any of us are?

My mother was a trailblazer of the Attachment parenting movement. She ran the local La Leche League at a time when breastfeeding was still taboo, air-dried all of our laundry so as not to waste electricity or harm the environment, and cooked a healthy meal for us every night, seven days a week. She selflessly raised four kids, with several of us sleeping in her and my father’s king-sized waterbed most nights. All of that “attachment” seemed to come with a price. I rarely saw my mother take time for herself or spend money on anything personal. From a young age it was evident to me (the oldest of the bunch) that she was running herself ragged. Frankly, she had well-adjusted children, but she seemed endlessly exhausted. To this day, “I’m so busy” is one of her signature phrases.

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I didn’t want that kind of life. I had no aspirations of motherhood until I became pregnant. That may sound harsh or unfeminine, but it wasn’t that I didn’t love children I just loved my freedom. I wanted to continue my higher education and achieve a meaningful career. (I had no idea what that meant, but I figured with hard work and dedication it would eventually materialize…)

When I had my daughter, I was determined to set the rules. I was going to train her to sleep through the night. I bought On Becoming Baby Wise and followed it to a T. Not only was I going to master her sleep schedule, I was going to be a Tiger Mom, push my daughter to hone her natural abilities and become an Alpha Baby. After one particularly difficult evening, I gave in and let my two-month old sleep in the bed with us… Six hours later we were all still happily sleeping… Regardless of the mom I thought I was going to be, my natural style fell more closely in line with the way I was raised.

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Classic slip-on Ballet-Flat by ECCO is not only comfortable but pairs adorably with dresses, shorts, and cuffed jeans. The versatile design is elegant enough to wear to the boardroom and supportive enough to chase after a toddler on a playground. Rich leathers and an adorable bow lace detail make this the ultimate shoe for cultivating BALANCE.

I came to accept that I’m more of natural Attachment parenting style person—because of nurture or personality? I didn’t know. But I did know that I had to give up the internal battle I was having with myself. I didn’t want to become depleted like my mother! It was only when I faced that fear that I was able to allow myself to accept my mother (and my own inherent parenting style) and allow the sadness I held for years that while my mom certainly took great care of her children, she wasn’t so great at taking care of herself—which is something I think a lot of moms can relate to.

20140411SOLERXFINAL-25The Alchemist blue quartz crystal necklace by Pauli Ochi is an unforgettable statement. Available at Carol Young / Undesigned.

While I by no means have discovered the secret of balancing work and motherhood, I know that self-care is the way I remain a somewhat decent mother and person. I’m the best mom when I’m present. I stay the most present by taking care of my body (working out), taking care of my mind (by making strides in my career) and creating time for my spiritual life (meditation practice). By making those things a priority, my battery is charged so I can fully participate in my kid’s life as well as my own. When I let any one of those three aspects go, I find myself glossing over and simply going through the motions of motherhood. I start to hear myself saying things like, “I’m so busy” or “I’m overwhelmed.” Those are sure signs that it’s time for me to get back to my basic self-care routines.

20140411SOLERXFINAL-11The Sara Dress by Carol Young / Undesigned will be one of my favorite summer dresses. Its loose fit makes it effortless to wear while ruffle sleeves and two front pockets add loads of personality. 

I’m probably never going to be an Alpha Mom, nor am I going to move to the country and have several children who sleep in my bed every night. I’m something in between. I’m an in-the-middle kind of mom. The kind my daughter will probably someday strive not to be— none of us really want to become our parents, right? I accept and love who my mother was (and is) and all of the ways I am similar and different. And I sincerely hope that my little one will someday feel the same way about me.

*Photography by the amazing SRGKRPNKO, retouching by the magical Sesha NYC

In the Groove

Sole Prescription Pharmacy Dr. Shannon Bindler, M.A., C.E.C.
12/16/2017
A shoe with a leather sole is perfect for individuals who want to get down and boogie. The most classic design is a traditional dress shoe, but modern styles offer a variety of options from formal oxfords to leather-bottomed sneakers. Unlike rubber-soled shoes that stick to the dance floor, natural leather soles let the foot slide, spin, and glide. Wear may create feelings of being "in the groove."
Symptoms
A natural leather sole is prescribed to individuals suffering from one or more of the following feelings or experiences: feeling stuck, out of sync, rhythm-less, unexpressed.
Warnings
May inspire spontaneous movement, feeling the beat, as well as fancy footwork. Wear may lead to John Travolta-like moments on the dance floor.

I’ve always loved to dance. I’ve had an inkling that dancing had greater benefits than simply exercise or stress relief. It’s always made me feel great (yes, it increases serotonin in the brain), and now it’s been proven that frequent dancing apparently makes us smarter!

I came across an article written by Richard Powers for Stanford University that clearly explains a study conducted by The New England Journal of Medicine on the effects of recreational activities on mental acuity in aging. Here’s Powers’ elucidation in a nutshell:

Albert Einstein College of Medicine conducted a 21-year study of senior citizens, 75 and older, to measure mental acuity in aging by monitoring rates of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.

Scientists wanted to see if any physical or cognitive recreational activities influenced mental keenness. They studied mental activities (reading books, writing, doing crossword puzzles, playing cards and musical instruments) as well as physical (playing tennis or golf, swimming, bicycling, dancing, walking, and doing housework.)

One of the surprises of the study was that almost none of the physical activities appeared to offer any protection against dementia. There can absolutely be health benefits, but the focus of the study was the mind, in particular memory. There was one important exception however: the only physical activity to offer protection against dementia was frequent – drum roll please – dancing!

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17a98d6b396f5c3e2f2285a5cf55d91e_largeNatural leather soles make these GRV kicks the king of the dance floor.

Here are some of the studies’ results:

Reading: 35% reduced risk of dementia
Bicycling and swimming: 0%
Doing crossword puzzles at least four days a week: 47%
Playing golf: 0%
Dancing frequently: 76%

Dancing was the greatest risk reduction of any activity studied, cognitive or physical.

The basic conclusion is that dancing forces the brain to create new neural pathways. Dancing integrates several brain functions at once — kinesthetic, rational, musical, and emotional — further increasing your neural connectivity.

If you’ve ever needed a smart “reason” to get on the dance floor, you now have one. Let’s boogie!

Preorder a pair on the GRV Kickstarter campaign and be one of the first to really get down on the dance floor.

Subscribe for a chance to win a free pair of shoes.

Step into your greatness! Check out my coaching programs.

Off to the Races!

Carol_Young Shannon BindlerGALLOPING FREEDOM

symptomsSYMPTOMS
· feeling caged    · unadventurous
· sluggish            · overly cautious

RxPRESCRIPTION GALLOPING FREEDOM
OUTER:
 Vegan suede boots by Olsenhaus, Equine print silk dress by Stella Proseyn, Structure pendant, Intersecting Branch earrings and Hexagon bracelet, all by Sarah Loertscher *All available at Undesigned
INNER: I take a leap and fly, happily embracing new experiences.

warningWARNING: Wear may instigate wild adventures and a galloping spirit.

StellaProseyn

It’s the Year of the Wood Horse, which begins on Jan. 31. According to Chinese Astrology, it’s predicted to be a lucky and energetic year.

I don’t know a lot about Chinese Astrology – okay, any type of astrology – but I’m always intrigued to hear what the experts have to say. 2013 seemed to be heavy for almost everyone I know. According to the Chinese calendar, it was an energetically slow year of planning, so I’m looking forward to tapping into the galloping spirit of the Horse.

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You’re a Horse if you were born in 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002 and, of course, in 2014 on or after Jan. 31. Want to know what your Chinese Zodiac sign is? This was the tool I used. If you’re born before January 31st, be sure to check your sign before reading your horoscope, as your sign will be the year prior. No matter what your sign, we’ll all feel the effects of the Horse:

“Horse energy is free-spirited, wild, willful, and independent. Horse has a refined instinct that acts fast, on the spot. The time for pondering was 2013 Snake year. Horse year is time to act fast – buy that home, launch that business, travel the world, make a big purchase, get a promotion at work, have a breakthrough – take a leap and fly. If it’s right, then there’s nothing to think about. Just follow instincts. Even if you miss the mark, you’ll have all of Wood Sheep year 2015 to get cozy and enjoy life’s comforts in all their artistic forms.

Casual and outdoorsy, Horse year is about freedom, returning to nature, and enjoying life and life’s adventures. You won’t always want to focus on work because it’s easy to be distracted by fun, good times, and parties in sexy Horse year. Because Horse can be impulsive, act now and think later, avoid the mistakes of overspending, enabling others, and denying when there is a problem. Overspending is easy in a Horse year because if you feel you deserve something or want a reward, the impulse to buy is strong. Horses often buy what they feel they deserve without realizing how their purchases effect their long-term planning because Horse rarely plans for the future.” – Read Astrologer Susan Levitt’s full 2014 report.

OlsenHaus OlsenHausOlsenHaus vegan shoes’ mission is to merge passions for design, fashion, and function while being a voice for animals, the environment, transparent business practices, and unwavering values in ethical and social responsibilities. Talk about freedom from business as usual! All that, and the lines’ design and durability can stand toe to toe with any traditional luxury brand.

Like everything, the Year of the Horse comes with its light or “positive” aspects (adventure) and its shadow or “negative” ones (being impulsive). I welcome more of a care-free attitude this year, but I’ve also shown poor judgment in the past when it comes to overspending and getting distracted by fun (especially if there’s a major shoe sale involved). For me, it’s going to be a dance of embracing the constructive qualities of the Horse while remaining conscious of making hasty decisions and/or purchases.

SarahLoertscherearringSarah-LoertschernecklaceSarahLoertscherSarahLoertscherbracelet
Sarah Loertscher’s fascinating jewelry reflects both the landscape she grew up in and her interest in the underlying structure of natural objects. Her architectural pieces draw inspiration from a mid-western skyline of power lines, sweeping skies, open fields, silos, and granaries.

As the Chinese say, “A good horse never turns its head to eat the grass behind.” So, this is a year to look ahead, not back.

Shannon Bindler

How do you plan to harness the energy of the Horse?

 

* All items featured can be found at Carol Young’s store Undesigned in Los Feliz, Los Angeles. Young is a former architecture student who became intrigued with the needs of urban nomads while living abroad in Asia, studying design in NYC and traveling far & wide. Taking subways, walking and cycling about town, she found herself seeking clothing that would allow her to move, keep dry and comfortable, but also express her individuality. Each carefully selected piece in Carol’s distinctive boutique is a testament of an uninhibited galloping spirit. 

Perfect Vulnerability

Perfect Vulnerability
PERFECT VULNERABILITY

symptomsSYMPTOMS
· feeling open to the elements     · exposed
· susceptibility   · defenseless

RxPRESCRIPTION PERFECT VULNERABILITY
OUTER: Boots by Margiela, shirtdress by Stephanie O Designs, jewelry by Moxxe Designs.
INNER: It is safe to reveal what is in my heart.

warningWARNING
Use may cause heartfelt disclosure and willingness to step onto a stage.

 

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This outfit represents feelings of security and vulnerability. It has a traditional form, but playfully reveals a
sense of 
openness and authenticity.

You may (or may not) have noticed a break in my blog posting in the past couple of weeks. I took a week off to travel for Thanksgiving, but upon returning found myself utterly consumed and sick over preparing for a TEDx Malibu talk. It became a bit of a beast. I was thrilled to have the opportunity, but as the date got closer I found myself writing and rewriting my speech. The knots in my back tightened as the realization that this speech would live for eternity on the Internet sunk in. I wondered if there was real value in what I wanted to speak about, or if it was too simple. When it comes to an outfit, I’m always a fan of the less-is-more approach, but I also know how hard simplicity can be to pull off (in design and in all areas of life). When I compared my speech to some of the TED talks I’ve seen over the years, I couldn’t help but not feel good enough. What if I went blank? What if people hated it? What if trolls posted negative comments? I wanted to cry. I wanted to cancel.

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Shoe1
I’m a fan of all things Maison Martin Margiela, especially these subtle, sexy ankle boots. The flesh tone
extends the leg while the boot provides stability and security. The low heel is effortlessly wearable and
the black back adds an 
unexpected “wow” factor.

After days of torment, I finally experienced peace. I accepted that I might fail, fall apart on stage, and people might not like my talk—or me. I moved through the fear of being exposed and stripped off my other fears, too. I gave up notions of delivering a “perfect” speech and stopped trying to over-intellectualize my words. I’m not a scholar; I’m a style editor. I’m not a genius, but my perspective has value. It took me a bit, but I was able to step into my own shoes and deliver the message that’s in my heart. Instead of trying to be brave, I went for being perfectly vulnerable. I read once that perfect vulnerability is perfect protection. Here is a fantastic TEDx talk on “The Power of Vulnerability” given by Brené Brown.

NecklaceRing
Bracletring
Moxxe jewelry is reminiscent of another era. Designer Rachel Katz is inspired by her Mother’s and
Grandmother’s vintage jewelry 
collection. These bold pieces add a bit of glamour to a classic look

I’m happy to say that I did it! I stumbled a couple of times and two of my slides somehow flipped out of order, but I didn’t let those bumps in the road stop me. I’m not sure if it was great, but I’m sure relieved it’s over! (Relieved giggle emoticon.) Interestingly, I felt surprisingly comfortable delivering the talk, thank goodness.

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slit2
SLITbig
Stephanie O Design is a rising star based out of Denver, CO. Her vibrant shirtdress is anything but
traditional. Bold colors and sensual arm slits create a look that’s 
simultaneously professional and fresh.

I’d like to give a huge shout of gratitude to Lisa Cypers Kamen and the entire TEDx Malibu team (Sarah Stephens, Corey Jenkins, the amazing crew, and all the volunteers) for believing in me and giving me the opportunity. The energy of this group is wonderful to behold.

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Is there an area of your life in need of the Rx of “Perfect Vulnerability”? I’d love to hear about it!

 

Fail Fast, Succeed Sooner

Broken heel sole prescription
Photography by Tanya Nager

I had a dream, and I decided to go after it. I did my research, got clear inside, and on New Year’s morning a couple of years ago I started working. This wasn’t some weeklong resolution that would putter out and die—it was a lifelong goal, and I was motivated to see it through to completion. I’d been preparing for this moment for years—studying, honing the proper skills, and creating the financial stability to make it a reality.

Leading up to my fateful launch, I prepared by taking the advice of several of my self-help heroes. I knew what my “bliss” was and was ready to “follow it” as Joseph Campbell advised. I created my own “purple cow” as Seth Godin smartly suggested. Taking the advice of my long-time guru Louise Hay, I cleared emotional blocks and limiting beliefs. I organized my office and created project lists with help from the “getting things done” guy David Allen… The list went on. I stopped reading the books and started applying them. And it worked, sort of…

I finished the project in a year’s time, after devoting a minimum of six hours per week (sometimes many more than that) until it was complete. I felt proud of the well-honed and stylized book proposal I’d created. I landed one of the best agents in the business and things seemed as if they were working out. Everyone I showed it to thought it was like nothing they’d seen before, and we all thought it was going to make a big splash.

It did. It garnered a ton of interest when my agent went out with it, but a week went by and then a month. Then two… There didn’t seem to be any serious offers. My “out-of-the-box” idea seemed to be a bit too “out-of-the-box.” Wait a minute—did they just call my cow too purple?

I was devastated. How could this have happened? I followed all of the “rules,” did everything “right.” I visualized, prayed, lit candles and sent all of the “good energy” I could muster out into the universe. Not only that, but I worked my butt off. I spent hours in a chair, hundreds of dollars and countless moments of my life on this project. What’s up, The Secret? Got to say, it feels like you left me hanging…

Broken heel 2 sole prescription

After moping around for two weeks I had an “aha moment” as Oprah likes to call them. I realized that my biggest fear had happened: I was a big fat failure! You know what? Failure wasn’t all that bad. My life continued on, friends stayed friends, work stayed steady. Failure wasn’t even close to the awfulness I’d expected. In fact, I felt surprisingly better than I ever had. I faced failure straight on, and it held no power over me anymore.

I’ve never felt lighter or more creative than I do now. I am continuing to move forward with my dream, and I’ve started two new projects. I feel like it’s just a matter of time until one of them ignites, and I know I have nothing to lose if they don’t. After all, the worst thing that can happen is that I experience failure again, which I’ve learned is nothing compared to the regret of being too afraid to try.

That’s why my new motto is, “Fail fast!” If something doesn’t work, I try to get it out of the way as quickly as possible so I can try something else. Something along the way is bound succeed. It’s simply a matter of odds, practice, and not letting a little thing like “failure” stand in the way.

 

Sign up for my newsletter to enter to win a free pair of shoes!

 

“I Am Beautiful” Are Not Dirty Words

Celine_boot_metalic_soleprescription
Open-toe, metallic heel boot by Celine

I’m much more comfortable behind a camera than in front of one. For a decade I’ve been an editor at various publications, working with top models and celebrities. So when many of my readers asked me to highlight more of my personal style, I cringed. No, my goal was simply to showcase the clothing (especially the shoes) that brought me joy, made me feel powerful, sexy, or more at peace.

Or was that really what was going on? I think something more complicated was brewing. I’m at ease with not being model thin and appreciate my classical features and sense of style. But, in the fashion industry, wearing a size 6 is considered “fat” and being over 30 is absolutely “old.” Frankly, no chic chick wants to be labeled as either.

Celine_boots_shannon_bindler
This is a vintage dress I’ve owned and worn for several years. I’m drawn to polka-dots and anything
black and white. It also reminds me of Miss Monroe’s iconic air-blown dress.

Call me fat, call me old (or too thin and young), but I’m not afraid to tell the world that I think I’m beautiful. Yup, I said it. And no, I’m not a self-obsessed narcissist. I am sick and tired of advertisers, corporations and beauty products telling me I need to fix myself. I like who I am and the way I look. Yes, I have a bit of a belly and wrinkles around my eyes, but I am comfortable about that. I want all people, especially my young daughter, to understand that not only is it okay to feel beautiful, but self-love is one of the most important and empowering things a person can feel (and practice). I am fit. I am healthy. I am just right, stretch marks and all. (I’ll tell you a secret, I’ve dressed a lot of models and most of them aren’t flawless either.)

Celine_boots_metallic_heel
These boots by Celine are my go-to “going out” shoe right now. I love the way they give an edge to a
romantic dress or steam up a pair of leather pants or skinny jeans.

I feel beautiful; I hope you feel that you are, too.

shannonbindler_viktor&rolf

Viktor_Rolf_blazer_bow
I’m a fan of a well-fitting blazer. While I tend to stay away from bows in general, I find this one by
Viktor & Rolf to be playful and flattering yet simultaneously polished.

If you don’t, I want to encourage you to take a long look in the mirror and focus on the things you like about your appearance. Then try it again, this time focusing on all of the places you despise (we all have them). Instead of hating, send each of those areas love. Practice this every morning, as you get ready. Just like working out, it may feel uncomfortable in the beginning but it gets easier the more you practice. There is scientific evidence that proves that repeating a thought (or affirmation) actually creates new neural pathways in the brain. This simple exercise has changed my entire outlook on my physique. It’s quick and free, and there is no product in the world that can give you the kind of confidence that comes from loving yourself. “I am beautiful,” is a mantra I hope every person, man or woman, chants inwardly everyday. Join me by posting a photo of yourself on Facebook or twitter with the hashtag #soleprescription

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The stunning metallic heel is incredibly comfortable. I went out this past weekend and was the only girl
able to keep her shoes on for the duration of our “dance off.” I even dropped it low a few times
(don’t worry, there was absolutely no twerking involved.)

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Because you are beautiful, just the way you are.