Mary Loyer: Founder of Red Lipstick Inc.

Mary Loyer: Founder of Red Lipstick Inc.

Welcome Ladies! As a Speaker and Relationship Coach, I will show you a new perspective on how to be confident woman as bold as red lipstick! If you've ever been frustrated by the men in your life or felt overwhelmed trying to find your own balance and harmony, you have come to the right place for some answers!

Subscribe to my blog, and get ideas and tips for being your best self, and getting what you need from your man with a lot less effort. Perhaps you'll learn something new, or get a reminder to practice living in your fabulousness. Enjoy!

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mixed messages_0 Working with men and women, I’ve discovered that one of the biggest areas of misunderstanding is in the way we communicate.  As you may have experienced first-hand with the men in your life, they tend to be very visual, and they use actions a lot more often than words to express how they feel or what’s on their mind.    Your man might care for you so much that he decides to plan a nice romantic dinner for you, although he may not actually say  “I love you.”  In his mind, it’s obvious by his actions.

The men I’ve talk to about this mentioned that they judge other men by their actions, so it’s a natural thing to express themselves by “doing,” rather than “telling.”  The women I’ve talked to have voiced much frustration, when their man neglects to tell them certain things, because he thinks its “obvious,” especially when it involves something important like picking up the relatives at the airport, or that he’ll be two hours late for their anniversary dinner.

It’s understandable that as women, we might be frustrated—since we communicate most often by using our words to express what’s on our mind, and how we feel about things.  If our man is trying to show how much he cares through his actions, we may sometimes miss it entirely, because we may be expecting him to “tell” us how much he cares about us.

This misunderstanding seems even more apparent in our society today, where many of us women are independent, successful, and we can provide most of the material things we want for ourselves.  When asked “What makes you happy?”  One group of women recently mentioned things like: adoration, attention, appreciation, companionship, and love from men.  The men I’ve talked to about this were shocked!  As it turns out, when a man is evaluating whether a woman is the one he wants to spend his life with, he notices the lifestyle she is currently accustomed to, and he evaluates if he can provide that same lifestyle for her, as he wants to make sure she is taken care of.

You can imagine the misunderstanding that might occur when a woman exclaims that she doesn’t need the fancy car, and the big diamond ring, and yet her “actions” shows her man otherwise.  If she is constantly looking at diamond rings, and talking about fancy cars, he receives a different message.  This doesn’t mean as women, we must apologize or diminish our success in life!  If you are dating, in a relationship, or married, perhaps you’ll simply consider that your man may notice your actions above anything you might say otherwise.

To avoid giving mixed messages, be sure to have your actions match your words.  Being clear about what you need to be happy could mean telling your man that you want to be in a relationship where you “work together to create the lifestyle you both want, and that you are provided with the love, care, and companionship that you’ve always wanted.”  Then by your actions of appreciation for what he does provide for you, you can send him the right message!  Enjoy the action!

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Being in the cosmetics industry for eleven years taught me a lot of secrets to looking beautiful.  I think the biggest secret I learned was that if you feel beautiful, you look more beautiful.  While a little mascara and blush certainly helped, sometimes it was the inner boost that really counted.  In my own journey of realizing and noticing beauty around me, I discovered a few other things that have helped me actually feel beautiful and confident –even in the moments when I not feel’in it.  What’s your greatest beauty tip?  We would all love to know your secret! 

 

Mary’s Beauty Tip #1   Create a Beauty Mantra: “I’m the Party”

Years ago, I was feeling self-conscious about going to a gathering with people I didn’t know.  I thought of my younger sister who I always believed to be the life of the party.  She is very outgoing, and always made friends easily.  Inspired by her social ease, I suddenly started to think to myself, “I’m the Party!”  I said it about ten times while in my car outside the restaurant where I was meeting this group of strangers.  As I walked into restaurant I suddenly had thoughts of being “The Party.”  Since I was the party, I felt as though it was now up to me to be open, inviting, and help the others open up and have fun.  I found myself in a giving, beautiful spirit.  That night I made great friends that I still hold dear today!

To create your own mantra, start by thinking of a woman you admire like your sister, your best-friend, a favorite celebrity, maybe, Oprah?  Think of the quality she may embody that you admire the most. Perhaps she is open-minded, radiant, easy-going, or confident?  Often that’s the quality we’d like to embody.  Turn that quality into a mantra for you: Confidence is my middle name!  I am self-expression!   I am LOVE!  When you wake up this week, try repeating that mantra several times as you wake up, or before you spend time with people and see how beautiful you feel!

 

Mary’s Beauty Tip #2   Create a Beauty Ritual: Reveal the Girlie!

After a full day of having direction, to do lists, and being in focus-mode, create a ritual to reveal your inner girlie that’s been waiting all day to simply feel.  Find out what has you feel re-charged and rejuvenated. (Painting your nails, taking a bath, or lathering up with sweet-scented lotion) Something involving your powerful sense of smell or touch.  This ritual must be done regularly to be a ritual: a ceremonial act or series of such acts. My girlie ritual is simply to slather on my favorite vanilla-orange scented lotion all over my body (Hugo Naturals from Whole Foods—Sooo yummy!).  I touch my soft skin, and I feel like my girliness has just been unveiled.  My man loves it too!

 

Mary’s Beauty Tip #3   Have a Beauty Quick-Fix: What’s your red lipstick?

When you need a quick-fix to help you smile and breath in the midst of your challenging day, create a beauty quick-fix–something you do that instantly has you feel happier, and beautiful.  Think of your favorite perfume scent, lipstick, or maybe your favorite song. ( It could be something that reminds you of your last moment of beauty- a vacation, a hot date, or fun night out)  Years ago, before a big meeting at work, I was feeling very stressed and tired from working the night before.  I had forgotten my make-up bag, and all I had was red lipstick in my purse.  I put it on, and when I looked in the mirror, I suddenly felt alive.  The boldness of the red seemed to wake me up, and I couldn’t help but smile and feel confident and beautiful (It might have also been the memory of the fun I had the last time I wore red lipstick in Vegas).  My meeting went very well and ever since then, I keep my red lipstick handy when I need a pick-me-up.  Take it from me–Having that quick-fix handy can give a much needed lift to the spirit, so your beauty can abound.

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MenGivingAttention Doesn’t it feel amazing when your man pays attention to you?  Sometimes it feels like I’m the center of his universe in that moment.  Imagine if you could get as much attention from him as you wanted.  What would that picture look like?  Would he be rubbing your feet?  Telling you how beautiful you are constantly? Perhaps he would notice every nice thing you did for him, and instantly show his un-ending gratitude by showering you with I love you-s?

I wonder, what does it mean to get “enough” attention?  I had the good fortune of listening to fifty-two men speak, about their need for “attention” from their woman, this weekend at a co-ed workshop.  I was surprised to hear that “attention” seemed to be just as important to them, and in some cases not getting it, was the cause of much heart-ache and eventually led to break-up.  I was even more surprised at what they described as “enough attention”.  Many of them agreed on the idea that attention was, in many cases, an instance or feeling of being cared about by their woman.  It might be displayed by her bringing him coffee in his favorite mug in the morning before work.  Perhaps she’ll notice that he is frustrated or cranky, and ask if he’s eaten yet.  Of course physical attention was ranked on the top of the list, simply because our feminine spirit has a great re-charging effect on men.  Above all, it appears that while the little moments of attention for the men might be different, they all included a consistent attitude of care and sincere interest for his happiness and well-being.  Everything she did for him was done with a smile, and he instantly knew she had his back.

I couldn’t help but think how similar the need for attention seems to be with men and women.  The women I’ve talked to agree that it’s the little moments of attention that count the most.  Sometimes it’s the text message that says “Thinking about you- Beautiful!”  Or the way he comes over and kisses her neck when she least expects it.  Those magic moments might be different for each of us, yet the magical connection we feel is the same.

So I ask you ladies, how do we get “enough” of whatever kind of attention we need and how to we give our man what he needs without feeling like we haven’t received any?  Think about that picture in your head of your man giving you exactly the kind of attention you love the most.  I invite you to write down what he is doing for you, and how it makes you feel.  Does it make you feel safe, cared for, loved, rejuvenated?  Now ask yourself, “Have I ever told him that these things are the magical things he does that have me feel safe, cared for, loved and rejuvenated?  You might think it’s obvious, and perhaps you think you’ve given him very clear clues as to what you need.  Keep in mind that he’s human, and he may have forgotten, or you might not have given him the proper appreciation the last time, so he may not know that he can win with you when he gives you that which you say you need.

Friendly reminders that include gratitude are so important; otherwise you may find yourself feeling neglected and resentful that he doesn’t appreciate how you care for him. When men and women don’t get the attention they need from their significant other, they may eventually give up on getting it from them, and find themselves more receptive to the attention they get from outside their relationship.  It seems unfortunate that this could happen, but sometimes our work, busy schedules, busy calendars, and responsibilities can get in the way, and have us forget to give each other what we need.  Before you  find yourself giving up on enjoying those “magical moments” of kisses on the neck, morning back rubs, or daily “I love you-s,” take the time to forgive each other for being human, and remind your man how much you love those little things he does that have his attention on you, and make you feel so special.

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442495a-i1-01Last week, I talked about the mystery of men being “Emotionally Unavailable.”  One friend shed light on what it felt like when her boyfriend lacked in this area, causing her to break up with him.  After further discussion and much research, I discovered that we may not really want men to have all the emotions that we as women do, but we DO want to feel their “presence” with us.  We want to feel them connecting with us in that moment we are with them.  The men I spoke to admitted that they are most able to be present and feel their woman when they are get to transition from their previous task or “hunt” from that day.  So the question I proposed last week is, “How do we allow men to transition?” 

The men I interviewed all differed a little in the ways that they transitioned from task to task, but they all seem to have some kind of transition ritual.  One man who works as an EMT, giving emergency medical treatment to trauma patients, mentioned that his transition ritual involves playing video games for thirty minutes.  He said, he gets to take all of his frustrations out on the bad guys in the games, and he can transition away from his stressful job to being present with his wife and two kids. After thirty minutes of game-playing, his wife mentioned that he comes over to her, and the first thing he does is ask about her day, and focuses on what she needs in that moment.  She recalls this being a far cry from the short,flat response she use to get from him when she rushed him at the front door– first thing with hugs, and details of her day with the kids.

I also remember my previous boss who use to get a cup of coffee on his way to his desk every morning.  It seemed almost a religious practice for him.  On the days when he didn’t get to enjoy his cup of coffee before my colleagues and I  all started bombarding him with the issues of the day, he seemed scattered, a bit frustrated, and didn’t appear to want to hear anything we had to say.  I see now that, he was probably reacting to not getting his coffee “transition ritual” to go from being at home with his family to his new “hunt of the day” at work.

I notice my boyfriend has his own transition ritual when he gets home from his last “hunt” too.  He empties his pockets, takes off his shoes, and checks his email for about 15-20 minutes.  His transition appears complete, because then he looks up at me, and asks about what I want to do or talk about next.  The focus is on me and I must say, feeling his amazing presence and connection with me is sooo worth it!

The next time you don’t feel like your man is connecting with you, perhaps you’ll consider that maybe he didn’t get his transition time.  Think about what his last hunt might have been?  Was he solving a problem at work, dealing with an intense situation, or analyzing a complex matter?  Chances are he hasn’t transitioned to being with you in that moment.  Understand that he would much rather be connecting with your feminine yumminess, but he might not be complete with his current “hunt” that is taking all of his attention.  He may also not even be aware that you are feeling deprived of his connection.  Remember…he can’t read your mind.  Although,  I know sometimes we think they should be able to, right?

To help him transition, you might asd, “Would you like some time to unwind before dinner?” Or “You seem distracted, is there something you needed to finish before we go out tonight?”  You might even ask your man what he likes to do when he gets home from work to transition to being at home?  Honor whatever it might be, even if he tells you he likes watching T.V. for a while.  Remember, it’s a ritual, and be ready to receive the amazing after-effects of him getting that time he needs. 

Men experience feeling through the physical, which is why they like playing contact sports, and why they like being touched.  I’ve never talked to a guy who didn’t light up at the thought of a massage.  You may find your man more “present” with the help of your gentle hands.  A nice neck rub, or back scratch can often help a man be more present to “feeling.”  Feeling then leads to connecting and being more available to you!  Enjoy it Ladies!

 

Please do write back with any aha! moments you have when you find your man is getting his transition time.  Was he more present and available to you?  Tell me everything!

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Unemotional-Men As I continue my research for my book about men, I find myself confronted with many questions and  frustrations from the many women I talk to.  I only hope there is enough room in my book to fit them all in.  Just this week, over lunch—the topic of men being “emotionally unavailable” came up, as one woman sited it as the cause for her recent break up with her boyfriend.

  As she unveiled her understandably emotional story,  my mind envisioned a soap opera episode in which her boyfriend failed the emotional availability test.  Perhaps he didn’t cry enough?  Perhaps he didn’t show enough anger when another man ogled her?  Or maybe he wasn’t willing to discuss his feelings at the drop of a hat?  When she told him the reason for their break-up, I wonder if he understood what it meant?

Surely he couldn’t have understood her thirst for connection with him, and her feeling of living in a drought after he failed to be the tall glass of water she hoped he’d be.  I know I’ve seen it on shows like Sex and The City, and many girlie-flicks, as women collaborate in their frustration that their men are “still not evolved enough to be in touch with their emotions.”

At first, I did agree, after all—I grew up hearing from my Mom, and many of my friends that men need to be more in touch with their feelings.  As women, we are so good at expressing how we feel, it’s natural that we would think men should do the same.  But then I wondered, what if we think we want them to be “emotionally available,” but what we really want is something else completely?  As I set out to find the truth, I started with Webster’s Dictionary for some clues and discovered the following revelation:

emotional: expressing an intense feeling (as of love, hate, or despair)
available: capable of being used or seen

Could it be that we are expecting men to express their intense feelings the same way we do when we are sad, or angry?  Do we want them to share with us, because it will help us connect with them the same way we do with our girlfriends?  As hunters who are used to being focused on their hunt, I can imagine having easy access to intense feelings might create a challenge when going in for the kill on a daily basis.  His boss might not respond well, if he was to have hurt feelings because he didn’t get the promotion he was hoping for.  So maybe it’s a good thing that men can be “emotionally unavailable”? 

During my lunch date, my friend who recently suffered a break-up, further explained that when her boyfriend was being “emotionally unavailable”, she got this feeling that he wasn’t able to connect with her, share with her, and  over-all he seemed distant and not present in each moment with her.  “Aha!” I thought.  Perhaps what we want from men is their “presence,”  which means : now existing.   Have you ever felt the presence of a man whose attention was on you and the current moment you were together?  In my experience it can feel like being enveloped in a moment of being seen with appreciation that is warming to my spirit.    This doesn’t seem to have anything to do with emotions, does it?  I now remember these moments of presence I often share with my boyfriend, and now I’m actually quite thankful that he’s “emotionally unavailable,” as it seems he is better equipped to hunt as a result.  The better hunter he is, the more I notice he can protect and provide for me.  I’m all for that!

After talking with several men about this, they confirmed that while they aren’t able to access their emotions as readily as their women, they really appreciate when they get to transition from a day of “hunting,” to being with her and have a moment to turn their focus on her and whatever they are doing together.  So the question is, How do we allow them to transition from their day or their current hunt, so that they can, and want to be present with us?    Stay tuned for the answer next week… 

EmpoweredWomeniYesterday I read an interesting study about women, by The Boston Consulting Group in 2009.  The study of 100,000 women in the United States revealed three major challenges plaguing women in their lives:

-Managing their household and finances

-Too many demands on their time

-Not enough time for themselves

I found these results so interesting, and I could relate as I know I have discussed these same three things with many of the women I know.  It does seem that in our society where a woman may have a successful career, a family, and other community responsibilities, all at once, she can feel as though someone always needs her at any given moment.  It might even seem impossible to get the time she needs to take care of herself.

I notice in my life, sometimes, I’ll even commit to certain responsibilities with out realizing that I didn’t plan for ME time in the midst of it all.  It’s a natural instinct as women to want to nurture and take care of the people in our lives.  We can be so good at adapting, that we may forget to fill our own tanks before continuing the marathon.  Who fills us up when we are approaching empty?

After reading this study, I started to wonder –Do the people in these women’s lives know that they are overwhelmed in these three areas of their life?  I wonder if their husbands, boyfriends, children, friends, or co-workers knew that they were having these challenges, might they want to help or relieve their stress in some small way?

I admit that I forget to ask for help and it can seem quicker to do things myself.  Then I finally have to listen to my body when it’s boycotting any clear thinking until I give it some well-deserved sleep.  Sometimes– time for ourselves is demanded by our bodies, and we have no choice ( I am experiencing this as we speak, while my body is demanding I give it much rest to recover from the flu).  When this happens, it can pose an inconvenience, and really disrupt our lives.  Though, isn’t it interesting, how when we’re sick, the people we love all come out to give us a helping hand? 

Why not empower ourselves to ask for help before we are desperate for it?  If you are experiencing certain challenges in your life, especially with the demands of your time—perhaps you’ll decide to make 2010 the year of your liberation.  Rather than assume you must do it all alone, I encourage you to make a list of all the things that demand your time, and take away from filling your tanks of love, patience, fun and any of the other amazing qualities that make you–YOU.   If it involves your kids or your family, discuss those tasks with your husband.  Who knows, you might find that he can help you find a solution, especially if it means he can experience his loving, patient, fun wife being less over-whelmed.

If your tanks are on empty for other reasons, be sure to reach out to your friends who can support you and lend a helping hand, even it’s a ride to the gym to make sure you exercise that day.  Here’s to an amazing 2010 filled with many empowering moments and full tanks to help us be the women we want to be!!

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Like many women I know, I was drawn to see the movie “It’s Complicated” with Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin.  I was mesmerized by Meryl Streep, who at sixty years old still looks so amazing and displays the kind of confidence that had me watch from the audience, thinking to myself how awesome sixty will be and had me actually looking forward to it. 

By now, we’ve all seen the preview showing the shock and horror on Meryl Streep’s face when her character, Jane wakes up in bed with her ex-husband, Jake, played by Alec Baldwin.  They divorced many years earlier, and now they suddenly found themselves in each other’s arms again.  I completely understood Jane’s shock, as Jake was now married to the very-hot thirty-something who he cheated on Jane with.  We can all probably relate to her confusion, feelings of wrongness, and just plain craziness that after cheating on Jane, he would suddenly want to be with her fifteen years later?  Sounds pretty complicated, right?

Well, I’m happy to report that through all the hilarious moments of pure shenanigans a`la Three’s A Company, I learned a very good lesson about love and I now think that perhaps it doesn’t have to be as complicated as we think.  While we might think as we’ve been told–that men only need sex and food–this movie sheds some light on something even simpler that I think we all want and have in common.  I wonder if  we all basically want to be “gotten” by someone– to have our soul be seen and loved as is.  I know it sounds corny, but how many of us melt when our man remembers that special place we like to be kissed or they see when we are about to get frustrated and they just know the special way to calm us down?  Even if it’s your best girl-friend who knows the right thing to say to cheer you up– These are all the ways that we can feel seen and truly known by the ones we love.  I believe it comes from a sincere adoration and appreciation for each other as people.

At a Thanksgiving dinner party I attended,  we all talked about the things we were thankful for, and one of the guests said that he was so thankful for having “a wife who gets him.”  I smiled, thinking that only the two of them could really know what that means.  Their adoration for each other was apparent by how much they seemed to truly enjoy each other.  This reminds me of  the movie, and I wonder if Jake and Jane’s friendship and adoration was possibly re-kindled when they enjoyed genuine laughter and fun together– beyond the matters of work and the kids that might have distracted them in their marriage before.  Could it be that they saw each other as beautiful on the inside and they suddenly found each other so attractive again.  Is it possible that in spite of Jake having a stereo-type-super-hot wife, he simply wanted to be seen, heard, and really be understood and appreciated—rather than just be a sperm donor to his ovulating wife?

When we feel seen by another human being, in my experience it feels like that person is seeing our beauty inside and out, quirks, details—and all!  This movie reminds me to remember all the special things I love about my man, all the little things that have me really “like” him and adore him as a person.  Now I get why, when we are having fun and laughing together, those are often the sexiest moments ever!  What can be simpler than that? 

When is the last time you had real fun with your man?   Perhaps as this New Year is dawning, you’ll remember some of the fun, silly times you have shared together, whether it be enjoying a concert with your favorite artist, or swinging on the swings at your local playground.  Whether your dating or in a relationship, make this year one of fun, laughter, and seeing each other’s true beauty!  Who knows,  you might find yourselves having more fun between the sheets too!  Enjoy!

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AB02258 This week I was thinking of the expression, “It’s better to be give, than to receive.”  I grew up hearing it a lot from adults, and I remember how much fun I’ve had giving through out my life.  I am especially reminded of the special high that comes from giving during this time of the year, when we are all in the giving spirit.

I pondered for a moment, wondering why it feels so good to give.   I smiled and thought of all the yummy giving moments I’ve had over the years—from the back-rubs I gave my grandfather when I was five—to the times I dyed my Mom’s hair for her.   I suddenly came to the realization that it wouldn’t have been as much fun to give, if those I gave to weren’t great receivers. To this day, when someone thanks me for the gift I gave them,  my help with the dishes, taking the groceries out of the car, or even making an extra grilled cheese sandwich, I feel so appreciated, and I know that my gift has been received.  Even better, is the fact that they let me give to them.

Have you ever offered help or tried to give to someone, only to have them say, “No thanks!”  Did you feel a little disappointed?  I know I have.  The other day, I was talking to a Man who mentioned “how confused he was with women these days.”  He said that often he’ll try to open a door for a woman, or offer help in some way, but so often she’ll stop him, and say, “No, thanks—I got it!”  Could it be that we as women have become such great givers, that sometimes, we forget to receive? 

This same Man seemed disheartened when he explained how much he really liked helping, and wished his wife would ask him to hang stuff on the walls more often, rather than do it herself before he got home from work.  He explained how cool it was when she used to ask him to lift heavy boxes, or do things that required a man’s strength.  The best part, he said was afterwards, “when she expressed her appreciation with a huge smile beaming from ear to ear.” 

As I listened to him reminisce about giving, I thought to myself, “Ah, yes—that’s the same kind of appreciation I feel from those I give to.  No wonder he feels deprived of giving.”  After our conversation, I couldn’t help but think of receiving in a whole new light.  Perhaps the real trick to being a great giver, is to be an even better receiver!  As a bonus to being a great receiver, I remembered that “receptivity” is one of the four most attractive qualities of women.

When we allow men to give to us, and help us—we get to practice the gift of receiving.  Sure, you can hang those pictures on your own, but why not let your man have an opportunity to express his way of giving and taking care of you?  If you are like me, I know there is a strong possibility that you have a certain way you like things done (How many of you re-clean the kitchen after he does the dishes? ).  The next time your man offers to give to you in some way, perhaps you’ll forget about the right way (your way) just this once, and practice receiving his gifts instead.  Trust me– it will be worth it, when you find that he offers to give to you– more and more, and more…  Enjoy!!

Please send me your best stories of your man giving to you this season.  How well did you receive??

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DatingHave you ever dated a guy, and decided to call it quits because there just wasn’t enough “chemistry?” If so, you are not alone. It seems our culture has put a huge value on chemistry between men and women. If we don’t have chemistry, we don’t seem to have that “spark” that has us be attracted to them. When I learned what chemistry really is, I found myself realizing why all the guys I liked in high school made my palms sweat when they walked by me, and why I could barely speak in their presence.

When we feel chemistry with someone, what we may be feeling is a chemical reaction. More specifically, it’s the reaction of dopamine-the feel good chemical & testosterone-the hunter hormone our body has when we have an intense physical attraction. The rush of this attraction might be so intense, that it has us be in survival mode as “we must have his sperm to promote the survival of our species.” It may sound crazy, but it can truly feel like a life and death situation if we don’t get that guy, when we are under the influence of this drug I will now affectionately call chemistry. ( Perhaps that’s why I remember so many of my girlfriends in high school say, “I’ll just die if he doesn’t ask me to prom!”)

In my twenties, I remember dating several guys that seemed to trigger this chemical reaction in me. They were so good-looking, seemed so strong and manly, and possessed my vision of the Ken Doll, that I just had to have them. I knew I had it bad, when I couldn’t sleep, work, or do anything else without wondering what my dream guy was doing, when I’d see him, how come he hadn’t called me in three hours, or if he would notice when I wore his favorite color. I also seemed to get my feelings hurt a lot when I was with them.

I can see now that my physical chemical reaction to them had me contort myself into who I thought I needed to be to win them. I was in hunt mode, and I completely lost myself. I lost my likes and dislikes, my preferences, and I lost all the things that were important to me. Eventually, things didn’t work out, because I grew exhausted being this other person, and I wasn’t really giving them a chance to show me who they really were either. How many of you can relate to Katherine Heigl’s character in the move: “The Ugly Truth?” I laughed so hard, because I could see myself in her. Remember how much she changed who she was just to win the guy of her dreams? In the end, the guy she fell in love with was the guy who got to see who she really was. He was charmed and enchanted by her authentic self, and actually wanted to be with her beyond the physical attraction.

Whether you’re in a relationship or single and dating, perhaps you’ll notice those moments when the chemical reaction of intense physical attraction is clouding your thinking and having you behave like someone else. Your friends may also be a great radar to sound the alarm, when you are twisting yourself like a pretzel to get the guy. Instead, try dating off-type or spending time with guys that don’t have you be speechless in their presence. Remember, the physical attraction will lead to sex, but being your authentic self can lead to finding someone who wants to spend time with you and make you happy in addition to all the other fun activities you will share together…

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42-16106965In the midst of your days of taking care of the kids, running errands, or working your full-time job, do you ever wonder how on earth you could possibly transform yourself into the sensual goddess that your boyfriend or husband might like you to be?

I know I often get so caught up in the throws of everyday life, I forget that as a woman, I’m actually a feminine being. I got a huge reminder one day, when I read that one of the top four qualities that attract men to women is: “Sensuality.” I had to stop mid-sentence to ask out-loud — what exactly does sensuality look like? My mind immediately drifted to images of Victoria Secret models in barely-there angel bras and lingerie with air-brushed skin. I suddenly found myself saddened at my misfortune of not having a whole crew to help me look like a freshly coiffed model who sat in a make-up chair for two hours, revealing a picture of perfection. Then I came back to reality, and decided to find out what this sensual business was all about.

As I embark on this short quest to the island of Sensuality, I invite you to join me. Together, perhaps we’ll discover that our own sensuality may not be hidden in the Bermuda triangle after all. According to Captain Webster, sensuality means: to arouse or excite the senses or appetites. Well, that certainly doesn’t sound like it even involves anyone else, does it? Could it be that by simply exciting our own senses, we can embody sensuality? Perhaps what men are really responding to is our own excitement and pleasure. Hmm, I wonder if the Victoria’s Secret models have figured this out yet? Could be one of their many secrets!

When I think of exciting my own senses, I remember how amazing my skin feels when I slather on vanilla lotion, or how I moan with delight, when I slowly take a bite of my favorite dessert, creme brulee. It seems, these are the moments, when we give our senses a real treat and are present to that pleasure. Listening to my favorite song that gets me in the mood to dance, or smelling my own perfume on my wrist, has me be in the moment and witness my own joy, that I can’t help but let it show. Often my boyfriend will look at me with a huge smile when I’m really enjoying one of these moments. Now I know that he’s probably noticing my sensual side.

This must be what my friend Victor meant the other day, when he described a woman he was with at Starbucks. He said that she had a look on her face as she sipped her latte that seemed as though she was experiencing both joy and pleasure in that very moment. He said the way she also seemed to take her time with her own experience was so attractive and very inviting.

Who knew that by having a party with our own senses and giving ourselves the permission to enjoy our own little moments of pleasure that we could actually be “Sensual?” Whether it be enjoying each bite of a good meal, listening to each note of sweet music, or slowly feeling the softness of your own skin, these can be very sensual, inviting experiences, and you don’t have to look like an orgasmic model in a Herbal Essence commercial. Perhaps this week in the midst of your busy schedule, you’ll take an extra moment and pause to enjoy whatever treats you give your senses. You might even notice who else is noticing you…enjoy!

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