Unlock your style in 14 days: Don’t wait for that next 5kg

If you’re a regular reader of this blog you will already know that I believe every woman is REAL.

This might seem like a strange statement but think about it. Does our size – and the arbitrary numbers or letters on a piece of clothing – make us any more or less real than the next woman?

Whether you’re petite, athletic, curvy or anything in between you are beautifully REAL.

And don’t you forget it.

I know, I know, it’s ok for me to sit here and preach this. Body acceptance is a tough gig for anyone – especially women – to embrace.

For me, it’s a daily process.

I’ll be honest with you.

My body’s never been “bikini-ready” but it has produced three amazing kids. My legs get me places. And my arms may be of the tuckshop variety but their good for handing out cuddles.

As for that number on the scales? Despite a healthy food intake, it’s always fluctuating – often wildly in one day – thanks to a non-existent thyroid.

So, the way I figure it, I can either cloak myself in a black sack or I can make clothing, hair and beauty choices that help me to show off the real me. That help show off my style.

This attitude has been a work in progress for a many, many years. What I aim to do is not let a certain number on the scales or on my clothing stop me from making ME a priority.

I refuse to give my sense of style some kind of ultimatum. I refuse to say, oh I’ll worry about what I wear when I lose 5, 10 or 15kg.

And you should do.

It's not about the next 5kg, it's about now.

It’s not about the next 5kg. It’s about NOW.

You deserve to feel the best you can now, not just at some unknown point in the future, don’t you think?

And if you are on a concerted weight-loss campaign, I believe this way of thinking is just as important.

Sure there may be budgetary constraints but if you don’t embrace your new style and confidence with select clothing pieces as you lose weight, then in my experience it’s going to be difficult to stay motivated to reach any goals you set.

You’re entitled to – and should aim to – feel your fabulous EVERY day.

Unlock Your Style in 14 Days | Don't wait for the next 5kg

Style work

Where is your head space on this?

Are you happy with your body how it is today? Or are you saving any new clothes purchases or beauty treats for a day in the future where you think you deserve them?

Are you ready for me to get all woo-woo-meets-Oprah again?

Here’s a little gratitude exercise when those negative body thoughts creep in:

1. Think of three things you are grateful your body can do.

2. Say them out loud.

3. While looking in your bathroom mirror.

4. NAKED!

HAH! Got you there, didn’t I? Give it a try every day for a week and let me know how you go. REAL women, hear me roar ;)

PS. Don’t forget if you want to share any of your progress along the way via photos, you can upload them in the comments or share via Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #unlockyourstyle and make sure you tag me so I can find it (@stylingyou). Facebook uploads to my page are welcome  too.

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SY-Style-Manifesto-150wide

 

** The Styling You Holiday Style Camp {Unlock Your Style in 14 Days} is based on the Styling You Manifesto. If you don’t have your own, you can download it here. I’ll also be giving away a proper printed Styling You Manifesto from The Smile Collective every day to the reader who catches my eye with their comments and participation.

Unlock Your Style in 14 Days (Day 4 manifesto winner): Kelly Isaacs. Kelly, could you please email me your postal address: nikki@stylingyou.com.au

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=538406480 Kelli Stevens

    I can’t agree more, Nikki. After fighting myself for far too long, one of this years “resolutions” is to be happy with myself AS I AM. If I eat healthier or exercise then that’s cool but if the scale doesn’t change (or goes up) then so be it. I’m spending a year on me and just living life happily. That means heading into a store and buying whatever size fits me, even if it is a Size 20 in some garments. My recent trip to Millers had me walking out with Sizes 14, 16 AND 18, haha. But whatever, they all fit and all looked great so who cares what the numbers say. :)

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      That’s exactly the attitude we need Kelli. See, same store and three different sizes. Ignore the number, it only messes with our heads. Buy clothes that make you feel fabulous.

  • Lisa

    Hi Nikki, congrats on such a successful challenge! So glad so many women are getting inspiration from you and accepting themselves as they are: real women in all shapes and sizes. Maybe you should turn your challenge into an e-book. I look forward to the rest of the week! My clothing wardrobe is stuck at “basics” at the moment due to post baby muffin top! I am bookmarking this post for future fat days! Xx ps. When is blogging Saturdays due back? I am losing blogging mojo at the moment…need a kick in the bum.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Thanks Lisa. I’ve been blown away by the beautiful women taking part – and yes, the plan has always been to turn this into an ebook. Production will be in February. The content will always remain on the blog though. And re Saturdays, I basically gave myself the school holidays off and will be back in February with some butt kicking if you like?

  • Sharon

    Thanks for such a lovely post, Nikki! With all the messages in the media and everywhere that give women a not-so positive self-image, it’s nice to hear someone as gorgeous as yourself remind us that our bodies do amazingly wonderful things, so we should at least celebrate that!! Just wanted to share that I’ve always been conscious of my weight as well of course (the curse of being female lol) but in the past couple of years, since I had my child, I’ve concentrated on eating as well as I possibly can, without being too hard on myself – I’ve cut out red meat, eat fish and vegetables mainly and only drink water, in the morning I have a cup of hot water with lemon or green tea before breakfast which is like a daily detoxifier, and only have alcohol on special occasions (I know. Crazy). But I still indulge in chocolate in moderation and have not cut out carbs from my diet.

    I find that by simply eating sensibly like this that I’ve been feeling so wonderful about myself and my body, feel great energy and good health that even if I don’t look like a supermodel I’m still pretty happy with things. It’s like I know that I’m doing the best that I can for my body, you know? For a stay-at-home mum with not much moolah. Of course, give me nutritionists and personal trainers on speed-dial then I’m sure that my body will look even better but it’s ok, my looks don’t have to be the subject of intense scrutiny like the celebs (and thank goodness for that!) And with your excellent style advice, I can really show some more love for this old body of mine as well. Winning :-)

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Sharon, you know it! Treat your body with respect then you will respect it. Love your thinking on this!

  • http://www.allthingsfabulousblog.com/ Courtney

    Great post Nikki! Thank for writing something so real and relatable to lots of woman. All ladies out there are gorgeous and should be working their best features with pride :-)

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Absolutely Courtney, it’s the only way to live!

  • Katyberry

    Over the past year I have lost 10 kg to become a large size 14 – small size 16. The battle isn’t over, but I’ve got to a place where I’m like “f&%k it!” I’ll wear a bikini if I want to. And I do. It took a couple of goes, but now I hardly give it a second thought. Everyone is too busy worrying about how they look themselves to give more than a passing thought to me.
    Life is for living!
    One thing that still gets to me a bit, is seeing pictures of me looking fat – but I try and remember that everyone else just sees me – not the fat bits – because that is what I look like to them.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Well done Katy and I love your attitude – it’s a good one x

  • Johanna at Zigazag

    Oh gosh, love this, except I’ve been writing about how to LOSE 5kgs on ZigaZag (albeit the healthy way!) As I eye a nice bottle of Sauvignon Blanc, cold and in the fridge winking at me, I’m tempted after reading your inspiring post, to give the whole #Do It Lose 5 thing up as a dead loss! Am I a real woman, or one of those ever hopefuls I ask myself as I am about to go stand in front of the mirror naked!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Oh Jo … I’m all for living our most healthy life possible but we need to love our reflection in the mirror each day that we do that. Go for that 5kgs it’s a great goal to have!

  • Rebecca

    Another great post Nikki – I’m loving your series. To be honest I haven’t been happy with my body for many years (especially since having kids), but find that it makes for a much happier life if I focus on trying to do the best with what I’ve got at any given moment. I totally agree that dressing in a way that makes you feel fabulous makes a huge difference to confidence levels. Over the past year I have given myself a bit of a style-overhaul and a big part of that has been gradually building up a wardrobe that works for me. It has helped me figure out my own style and has had an amazing impact on my confidence levels. Although I am sure it will always be a work in progress I am now at the point where feel both confident and fabulous most days, despite being a flabby size 16!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      So so essential to focus on the moment Rebecca!

  • http://slapdashmama.blogspot.com.au/ SarahMac

    Oh this is so true, not just about weight but.life in general. I mean, you don’t know what will happen from one day to the next, It’s a cliche but it is so true. I just love your blog Nikki!!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      It is true about life in general. We don’t know what tomorrow will bring. Live your best day today x

  • http://twitter.com/ACurvyWoman PrincessEatsPeaSoup

    I feel fabulous almost every day. I have to say it is not to do with body confidence because I think my body confidence is a little on the low side. It has everything to do with self confidence. My self confidence is not rooted in my the reflection in the mirror and I do just fine. I am way more confident about my wardrobe and my style in general than my body. I can’t tell you what a difference confidence make to the way people see you. It’s in the body language and general demeanour. I do feel fabulous and I wear that feeling when I walk out the door.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Oh, I love this. This is where we all should aim for – self confidence reflected out there by the bucket load!

  • Marianne

    This is bang on (again!). Being the new year, my husband and I have resolved to get ourselves back into shape (or at least into a smaller version of this shape), after being thrown out of whack with 3 weddings back to back mid-year, and a couple of personal hiccups. I was hesitant to start your boot camp at all because my internal monologue kept telling me ‘don’t do it now, wait until you lose all that weight and you will be able to go nuts and really celebrate’.
    Luckily, I got stuck in and decided that while I don’t want to spend a fortune on a new wardrobe right now, I do want to look as good as I can every day – for work and play. I treated myself to a few basics in the sales, and have been able to get a few accessories (my theory is that it won’t matter what weight or shape I am – shoes and jewellery will always fit!). The result of taking some time to make myself feel good every day means that I can appreciate my body, find things to work on, things that I love already, and not feel as though I can’t go out or do something because I am waiting for that elusive size whatever to make it worth having nice clothes.
    Going to start giving the daily gratitude exercise as soon as I get out of the shower tomorrow morning! Thanks Nikki.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Oh Marianne, this is spot on what I’m about. Do live your healthiest life but don’t wait to enjoy it. Great idea with the accessories!

  • http://www.sugercoatit.com/ Melissa Walker Horn

    As someone who blogs about my body, clothing choices and health and fitness it occurs to me EVERY SINGLE DAY how much woman are waiting for that next 5kg to drop off before doing something to make themselves happy. I’m far from perfect, just a perfect version of myself, in this minute, right now. After all, who or what else could I be?

    I am firmly, strongly in your corner on this one. Do it today. You just might not get a tomorrow. Plus it’s loads of fun and it feels good to be nice to yourself.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Melissa, you are an amazing inspiration for so many … for those who don’t know Melissa she wrote an amazing series late last year called Confident You. If confidence is what you need to work on, do yourself a favour and have a read here: http://www.sugercoatit.com/category/confident-you/

      • http://www.sugercoatit.com/ Melissa Walker Horn

        Naaaaw, thank you Nikki. For the kind words and sharing the link for the ladies and gents here. {are there gents? Who knows? Haha}

        • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

          If they are here Mel then they are very quiet ;) And you’re very welcome x

  • Abeachcottage

    Wow great post

    I am in a funny place right now with body image – for me it comes down to staying fit and staying strong which I have let slip but will be changing

    I had a bit of time last night to read through yr posts and its time for me to do some wardrobe work when the kids go back!

    already realised and sourced what new basics I need to update (jeans, jacket, tees) and setting aside some show pony shopping time – cant wait!

    S x

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Thanks Sarah – and I do believe that life is for living – if you’re going on an annual holiday then enjoy for what it is knowing that you can get back on track once home. xx

  • Reannon Hope

    Great sentiment Nikki. These past two years have seen me become heavier than I’ve ever been but I’m also more comfortable too. All through my teens up until I had my first baby at 21 I had eating disorder after eating disorder. After my babies I fought to get my old body back with diet after diet & exercise. This all changed a few years ago when I realized I am how I’m supposed to be, they way my body is most comfortable. I eat healthy, I am as active as possible & I’m happy with my myself. Sure my stomach is fat, my hips are wide & I’m more jelly like than before but it’s ok. I wish more woman would accept themselves as they are instead of battling to be something else. It’s not easy but makes life easier :)

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      It’s not easy but when we work on it I agree, it makes life so much easier. x

  • http://www.ubersimplicity.blogspot.com/ Leanne @ Uber Simplicity

    Couldn’t agree with you more Nikki! Although it’s taken me 40 years to get here, and I have to thank Aussie Curves for giving me confidence to wear some colour! And I even wore shorts and skirts this summer and I have NEVER done that. Embrace who you are each day is that much easier. Great post.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Aussie Curves is an awesome initiative (for those not in the know, it’s a blogger photo challenge for size 14+ and provides amazing inspiration for women of all shapes and sizes http://www.aussiecurves.com/)

  • Kelly

    Nikki it so obvious that you are totally real and that is why I and I am sure many others love your posts. You say the things that need to be said and make all of us feel “normal”. You certainly do “practice what you preach”!

    I am guilty of buying something that I know is a bit too small but thinking it doesn’t matter as I will loose a couple of kilos and it will fit properly soon. Needless to say that isn’t always the case.

    My body does amazing things when I look after it – when I don’t I can feel its limitations. I am trying very very hard to look after it and I can feel myself becoming stronger and much more positive. And thank you for being so generous with your manifesto – I can’t wait to receive it.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Thanks so much Kelly and you’re very welcome re the manifesto – going back to our mindful shopping lesson – I’m a big believer in buying clothes that fit you now, so hopefully you’ve taken that on board now that you’re a super unlock your style student ;)

      • Kelly

        Yes … definitely have. And if I forget – I will have the words on my wall!

  • http://www.jfgibson.com.au/ Jodi Gibson

    I’m okay with my body. I work at it, watching what I eat but not denying myself and I exercise and tone to stay healthy. There will always be things I would love to change (especially since being a Mum!) but I try and appreciate my own ‘beauty’. I like to think everyone has ‘real’ beauty not the distorted image that the mainstream media portrays, but real womanly beauty. I love your steps Nikki, very empowering. x

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Everyone does have real beauty but it has to start with seeing that in ourselves, doesn’t it? Love your body and what it does – glad you do!! x

  • Lisa Mckenzie

    I am sort of lucky,but I have had to keep my weight in check because if I don’t I won’t be able to walk,Doctors orders I might add,after all the numerous operations on my leg it cannot handle any extra weight,and like you I have no thyroid which is no fun,I have some varicose viens on my legs but I had them stripped years ago and will not go through it again,but I am pretty happy with my body,it is boyish and I’m quite petite so I should not complain,also having a huge baby and then a smaller one didn’t do much for my stomach,that is really the only part I don’t really like,and I have thickened around the middle since having children and have no waist but I am 50 this year and really have to be grateful for what I do have.No I don’t have a bikini body and even if I did don’t think I would wear one,tankini’s are fine.
    My husband and I had this discussion a few weeks ago actually how I don’t like my stomach and he said “you look good still,not as good as when you were 18 ” and I thought about what he said and he is right he still thinks I’m sexy,I don’t get it but the media plays a huge part in body image,Mum gave me some Womens Weeklys and I read about Rebecca Gibney who I think is lovely and she said she is not losing anymore weight after putting it on for Mental,but the thing that shocked me was that it had in small print the images where retouched,so what sort of message are magazines sending out!! I am going to do what you said about gratitude and try and banish any negativity I have,thanks Nikki for reminding Us.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      I totally agree Lisa … it’s very easy for us at any age to get hung up on a celebrity media ideal. If we let it. But we need to fight those thoughts and for many of us that’s a daily fight!

  • http://www.facebook.com/GoddessMel1974 Melanie Lindner

    Am I totally happy with my body? Well, no. But I love it anyway – it carries me around, houses my hefty brain, gets its groove on, enjoys a loving touch, jiggles when it wiggles in a very womanly way, and gives and receives cuddles with ease. It does not always get me where I need to go, but I have promised it I will take better care of it so it can. And that includes dressing it up in lovely things NOW to show it off and make it happy and not expect it to be smaller/fitter/firmer before I treat it with respect.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Promising to take better care of it is respect that’s for sure Melanie and really helps to drop the expectations x

  • http://twitter.com/Princess_Zo Zoë Condon

    Wow this one strikes a chord! I’m just about to pack up my wardrobe to move house and I know I’m going to have a pile of clothes I’ll get into once I’ve lost that pesky holiday gain. Instead, I’ll think about it differently, thanks Nikki.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      I’m glad you will Zoe because you deserve to feel good about yourself today and every day x

  • Jen ( SE Qld)

    I am also really guilty of this and I don’t just want to wait until I have lost the recent weight I have gained, it’s because there were a lot of nice clothes I would like to wear again in my wardrobe that just don’t fit at the moment . But thanks to your Style Camp Nikki, I am using what I have at the moment as best I can, and updated a few items recently that I can always have taken in if I really need to or want to down the track and spent a lovely morning yesterday buying new accessories for some colour and bling. It has made a big difference to my limited wardrobe at the moment definitely. Thanks again!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Oh Jen, this is great. Yes, you can be clever about it. Just a few things – especially accessories can give you the lift and motivation you need.

  • http://www.facebook.com/allira.quinton Allira Sierke

    Over the past 6 years I have lost 48kgs going from a size 24-26 to a 12, while I am healthy and so proud of what I have achieved, it has left it’s toll. Loose skin, stretch marks and various wobbly bits. I have had surgery to remove the skin from my arms but the rest can stay(they invented Spanx for a reason!).

    For a long time I hated the skin, but then I made the choice to be nice to my body and I started doing exactly the same steps that you have written Nikki. You know what? It bloody works. There are still days when I get down but I just wack on a pair of Spanx and get on with life.
    This body of mine has gone through an amazing transformation, it has fallen in love, got married, bought a house, renovated and educates, inspires, and cares for my teenage students everyday and chases my 7 month old fur-child around.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Oh Allira, what an inspiring story. Thanks for sharing it and I love your “wack on a pair of Spanx” attitude. We do just need to get on with it, don’t we?

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Hi Allira, you’re today’s manifesto winner. Please email me your postal details!

  • Kirsty

    Guilty as charged!!! I often won’t buy something as I think “I’ll just wait until i’ve lost a few more kilos” and guess what…..that never happens! Thanks for letting me know that I’m not alone in this. Now off to the bathroom to have a few harsh words with myself! :)

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Be kind on yourself … just a few gentle nudges that it’s ok to prioritise this no matter what that number on the scales says!

  • Dianne

    Taking the time to look good makes us feel good… It’s like anything in life if we wait til we have enough money, enough time or the right number on the scales we will spend our lives waiting… Do it now I say!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      So, very, very true, Di … life is for living. NOW!

  • B

    Oh Nikki… You are inside my head aren’t you? I have been thinking these kinds of thoughts for the past few weeks. It is easy to get down on myself for not being in the condition I would like, but I don’t often turn the tables on myself and point out the things I LIKE about myself….

    Thanks for the reminder. These posts are awesome!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Thanks B … trust me it’s a constant mental battle for me too but one I’m prepared to fight because I’m worth it. You are too!

    • Kat

      I am the same B and am often told by Hubby that I am too hard on myself. Time to focus on the positive!