It’s easy to explain away (in superficial terms) what does or does not make me feel physically sexy: when I look and feel good in what I’m wearing; when my hair does the right thing; when my make-up just works.
But, since sexiness is really a state of mind, a way of thinking, it has less to do with those actual physical things than the way I feel about myself at any given time. And my self-image is usually indicative of my current state of mental health.
For example, I could wear the same dress on two different days. One of those days, I might see myself as sexy in that dress…powerful and ready to take on the world. On a different day, I might see that dress as “making me look fat” or “accentuating all the wrong parts of me.” My physical body is not different on those two days in that same dress. But my mental state is.
I do believe that clothes and hair style and make up can improve the way we see ourselves, and dressing well can positively influence our self-concept, as well as the way others view us. But true sexiness radiates from the inside out.
It’s really about confidence. And true confidence comes from self-acceptance.
The more we love ourselves, the better we will feel about everything. On the days when I’m feeling good about myself, everything looks brighter and more manageable. I have more energy, I’m more willing to try new things and take positive risks.
On the days where I’m feeling flat or depressed, my self-image also takes a big dip.
Since depression is caused by chemicals in the brain, I don’t really blame my own occasional poor self-concept on anything I’m doing wrong in my life. I mean, I can always work to improve how I feel about myself, and I do. But, when shit gets ugly as a result of my mental health, I try to just be gentle with myself. I’ve become a lot more self-aware over the years, so when depression comes to call, I just accept that my brain is telling me lies about my appearance. I may not feel sexy, but I know that my eyes are seeing something that others are not.
When I look at others, what makes them truly appear “sexy” to me is how they carry themselves. Cleanliness, signs of intelligence, wit and smiling and laughter, pheromones, a confident air…these things aid in creating a sexy image for my brain to take in. And what my brain finds sexy…another person’s might not. I find these characteristics sexy because they are the things that I find sexy in myself.
So, when I’m on the outs with myself, taking a shower using nice-smelling shower gels and shampoos can lift my mood and improve how I feel about myself. Putting on a comfortable pair of jeans or leggings and a favorite t-shirt can go a long way to bringing me back to life, as well. Curling my hair, putting on a little make-up, getting some fresh air, and spending some time outside of my own head talking to someone else can also help.
It’s a fake-it-till-you-make-it set of strategies, but it works.
We can be our own worst enemies when it comes to self-image. So, it’s good to remind ourselves that we all can be sexy. Being sexy comes from feeling sexy. And feeling sexy is all in our minds.