That’s What She Said

maxresdefaultThat’s What She Said: Ten women. Five topics. One table. Honest conversation about issues facing women today.

Darling Magazine and SoulPancake partnered up for a great little series called That’s What She Said. It’s been gathering momentum online for its meaningful, raw, encouraging, inspirational and empowering content. I personally love the raw beauty of it – in words, heart, and excellence. Natalie Patterson is also a major highlight as she so eloquently brings spoken word poetry to each.

Below are the episodes (email subscribers, click here to watch). Sit down with a cup of tea, some chocolate, and open yourself up to be illuminated, encouraged, and challenged. You may even shed some tears (happy ones, because someone understands and has walked a similar path as you). Enjoy x

- Beauty & Body Image -

- Perception & Confidence -

- Aging & Death -

- Power & Purpose -

- Parents & Parenting -

- 10 Things Every Female Should Know -

How Do You Define Yourself?


How do you define yourself?

By  outward appearance – the shape of your eyes, size of your lips, or colour of your hair? Your accomplishments or failures? What about the words people say or type about you?

A TED Talk by Lizzie Velasquez popped up in my Facebook feed a couple of days ago and I’ve watched it numerous times since. It goes for 13-minutes and is highly inspirational and thought provoking (in the best way!).

See, Lizzie was once labelled ‘The World’s Ugliest Woman’. She could have retreated, bitten back or become bitter for having a rare syndrome that prevents her from gaining weight, but she didn’t. And now she’s redefining what it means to be beautiful.

Put the kettle on, make a cup of tea, and watch the Talk either below or click here. Note: you will most likely fall in love with her – she’s a beauty, absolutely hilarious, and captivating.

// Some quotes:

“You are the one who decides what defines you.”

“I’m going to let my goals and my success and my accomplishments define me, not my outer appearance.”

“Tell me those negative things, I’m going to turn them around and use them a ladder to climb up to my goals.”

“Brave starts here.”

Question: How do YOU define yourself? 

[image source]

Thoughts on Being Camera Shy

dovebeauty[image via Pinterest]

Earlier this week I saw the newest Dove Beauty Ad Campaign, ‘Camera Shy‘ (embedded below). Dove are always so clever in their marketing campaigns – remember the Dove Real Beauty Sketches one? The overall concept is touching and thought-provoking, featuring older women hiding their face from the camera; being camera shy.

Near the end the words “When did you stop thinking you were beautiful?” flash up, followed by younger girls unashamedly smiling and loving being captured by the camera.

When did you stop thinking you were beautiful?” – what a question, hey?

As a young girl I knew I was beautiful. My parents always told and reminded me: “Bethany, you’re beautiful – do you know that?” 5-year old me: “Yes, you tell me allllllll the time *rolls eyes*”

But like all girls, as you grow older you become aware of how you look… especially in comparison to the girls around you. Photographic evidence suggests that I loved being photographed as a young girl. You can find me smiling, posing in many pretty dresses, and having that glint in my eyes where you could totally tell I knew I was beautiful. Then I became a little older and ‘camera shy’.

To be honest, now in my twenties I’m more camera shy than ever. And to be completely honest, I’m more fine and comfortable having the stupid funny face images taken of me than the ‘nice’ ones. But is it because I stopped thinking I was beautiful?

Dove conducted a Global Research Report looking into why women are camera shy, and the findings are quite remarkable:

Dove Global Research: Key Findings[2]

Beauty anxiety is the main reason why women are camera shy.

  • More than half of women (57%) admitted that worrying how they will look is likely to have a negative impact on how they feel in front of the camera
  • On average, women become more self-conscious in front of the camera at the age of just 24
  • 55% of women are more camera shy now compared to 10 years ago

Women are missing out on capturing memories.

  • 63% of women have destroyed photos of themselves
    • Digital photos are even more likely to be destroyed than printed copies (55% vs 25%)
  • Nearly 1 out of 3 have stopped photos being taken or later destroyed photos of a beach holiday, a significant party with friends/family and even their own graduations

Digital photos are increasing women’s sense of camera shyness.

  • Being tagged in a photo on a social network causes more than half of women to feel more anxious about the way they look
  • Almost half (46%) have de-tagged, deleted or removed a photo of themselves
  • 41% have done something to a photo of themselves to enhance their looks before posting it online


Interesting. Especially when it comes to the digital photos.

Back in the day, photos were snapped, developed days/weeks later, then put in an album where a handful of people would see them. Nowadays, photos can be taken in a flash on multiple devices and shown to the world seconds later; it’s no wonder digital photos are increasing a woman’s sense of camera shyness.

And perhaps that’s why we’re so camera shy – there’s an abundance of opportunities for your image to be captured. And an abundance of opportunities to have your image taken again; it’s no longer a novelty, but a given.

Or maybe it’s because our belief that we are beautiful got trodden on and altered along the way.

What I love about this particular campaign though is that it highlights the innocence of young girls in believing and loving their  beauty. It also smacks us on the side of the head to think about, well, when and why did I become camera shy?

[ponder moment]

When and why did you become camera shy?

Nature’s Beauty Teaches Us

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[personal image via Instagram @bethjae]

“Earth & sky, woods & fields, lakes & rivers, the mountains & the sea, are excellent school masters, and teach us more than we can ever learn from books.”
{John Lubbock}

// Nature’s beauty is the greatest teacher of all.