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Today’s Fabulous Friday Female is Ashley Judd!

Ashley JuddToday’s Fabulous Friday Female is the amazing Ashley Judd.

Ashley has been making headlines around the world this week, speaking out for women everywhere about the criticisms and judgements that are levelled at us based purely on our appearance.

Back in March, Ashley did an interview for Canadian Television, after which there was mass speculation that her “puffy face” indicated that she had recently had plastic surgery.  Alternate views were that at the age of 43 her skin was so flawless that she must have had work done.

Ashley confirmed that her appearance was simply a combination of lack of exercise over the winter and a course of steroids to help her overcome a sinus infection that she hadn’t been able to shift.

But after some vicious and brutal attacks levelled at her by the media…ranging from calling her a ‘cow’ or a ‘pig’ (not to mention that she was being called fat for being a US size 6-8, which is a UK 10-12) to saying that her husband was ‘looking for his second wife’, Ashley felt compelled to speak out.

Her response was posted here on her website and then published on the news site The Daily Beast .  She then gave this exclusive interview, which prompted another explosion of media interest:

I thought I would share a few quotes from her message:

I ask especially how we can leverage strong female to female alliances to confront and change that there is no winning here as women. It doesn’t actually matter if we are aging naturally, or resorting to surgical assistance. We experience brutal criticism. The dialogue is constructed so that our bodies are a source of speculation, ridicule, and invalidation, as if they belong to others – and in my case, to the actual public.

How does this symbolize constraints on girls and women, and encroach on our right to be simply as we are, at any given moment?

Who makes the fantastic leap from being sick, or gaining some weight over the winter, to a conclusion of plastic surgery? Our culture, that’s who. The insanity has to stop, because as focused on me, as it appears to have been, it is about all girls and women.

It affects each and every one of us, in multiple and nefarious ways: our self image, how we show up our relationships and at work, our sense of our worth, value, and potential as human beings. Join in – and help change – The Conversation.

I believe that any woman who is standing up and publicly condemning the epidemic culture of objectifying, judgment and criticism, and is promoting the building up of support, female to female alliances and acceptance deserves acknowledgement and celebration.

So please join me in celebrating Ashley Judd today and help me in sharing her message, for all women today and in generations to come.

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As you know, I would love to acknowledge, honour and celebrate the women who have inspired you as well.  So if there is someone that you believe should feature as a Fabulous Friday Female, then send me an email (claire@feminine1st.com) with 3 simple details:

  • Who is your Fabulous Friday Female? (Her name and location in the world)
  • Why is she a Fabulous Friday Female to YOU? (How do you know her? What does she do?  In what way is she inspiring?)
  • A photo or link to a picture of her online (if there is a reason that you would prefer not to include a photo, just let me know)

So help me to share with all of our lovely ladies the real women who inspire YOU.

…and remember, as always, to Stay Fabulous too!

Claire x

 

Today’s Fabulous Friday Female is Lynne Hazelden!

Lynne HazeldenFor those of you who have been following my recent posts, it will come as no surprise to you that today’s Fabulous Friday Female is the incredible Lynne Hazelden.

When Lynne discovered she had breast cancer in 2010, aged 51, she knew she was in for a very tough time. Not only because the treatments for cancer in the UK are known to be aggressive but because her health was already seriously compromised due to a rare mercury and amalgam allergy, diagnosed at Guys Hospital in 1995. An allergic reaction to fillings had left her health and energy seriously impaired and her body highly sensitive to conventional drugs.

Lynne, who has made appearances in ‘Star Wars’, ‘The Bill’ and ‘Judge John Deed’ as well as working voluntarily with young people on The Hunger Project and for peace organisations, bravely decided to have a mastectomy. The aggressive effects that chemotherapy and other therapies can have, Lynne felt could be too much for her already compromised health.

While the surgery was successful, Lynne recently discovered another lump in her reconstructed breast and learned the cancer had affected her lymph nodes too. The second lump and some lymph nodes have now been removed but she doesn’t intend to take it easy until she’s not only raised the funds she needs for own treatment but awareness in the UK of the much kinder treatments for cancer that are proving successful in other countries.

Lynne has discovered new and successful pioneering treatment in Israel at the International Centre for Cell Therapy and Cancer Immunotherapy. The centre specialises in treatments for cancer which include a broad range of personalised therapies. With out help, Lynne is hoping to have treatment herself there but to also bring knowledge of the kinder treatments on offer to patients in the UK.

I personally feel that Lynne’s determination to help others through her own circumstances in spite of her compromised health is truly inspiring, and I would love for you to join me in celebrating her as today’s Fabulous Friday Female!

If you would like to help Lynne and her cause, then remember to Pay Forward a Pound (if you missed the post earlier this week you can find out how to help with just £1 here: http://feminine1st.com/pay-forward-a-pound-for-lynne/) to do your bit right now to help save Lynne’s life.

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As you know, I would love to acknowledge, honour and celebrate the women who have inspired you as well.  So if there is someone that you believe should feature as a Fabulous Friday Female, then send me an email (claire@feminine1st.com) with 3 simple details:

  • Who is your Fabulous Friday Female? (Her name and location in the world)
  • Why is she a Fabulous Friday Female to YOU? (How do you know her? What does she do?  In what way is she inspiring?)
  • A photo or link to a picture of her online (if there is a reason that you would prefer not to include a photo, just let me know)

So help me to share with all of our lovely ladies the real women who inspire YOU.

…and remember, as always, to Stay Fabulous too!

Claire x

The launch of the Fabulous Friday Female…today’s Fabulous Friday Female is Lisa Steadman!

I love social media.

Being connected with so many other fantastic people all over the globe brings so much to my life…and continually inspire me.

As you know by now, one of my passions in life is helping women…and part of that is recognising and spreading the word of other amazing women…and sharing their work and what they do with others.

Collaborating and connecting are two of my buzz-words…I think that the more we can collaborate and support each other and the more we can connect with people who inspire us, the better.

So today I’m launching a new initiative: The “Fabulous Friday Female”…which has been inspired by a lovely lady, Claudia Crawley who I see regularly recongising and celebrating women, which I’d love to see more of us doing! 🙂

Going forward, every Friday I will be sharing with you a fabulous female who is inspiring in her own unqiue way.  It could be a celebrity, it could be my next door neighbour, it could be someone I’ve met randomly, it could be a friend, it could be anyone!  But she will fulfill 3 simple criteria:

  • She is a woman
  • She is inspiring in some way, whether big or small
  • She is someone who I would like to acknowledge, honour and celebrate

…and most importantly I would love to ask for your help on this.  I would really love for you to contact me and tell me about the women who inspire YOU.

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Lisa SteadmanSo, today’s Fabulous Friday Female is the amazing Lisa Steadman…

 

Lisa, if you don’t know her, is a force of nature.  She is a firecracker of energy and spirit who is totally infections…you can’t help but love her.

Lisa is an internationally acclaimed best-selling author, sought after speaker, breakup expert, branding consultant, and CEO of Woohoo, Inc. After spending a decade successfully branding multi-million dollar properties like Barbie while fumbling her way through romantic breakup after breakup, Lisa broke up with Corporate America and Mr. Wrong, built her own buzz worthy brand as THE Breakup Expert, became an instant best seller with her bookIt’s a Breakup, Not a Breakdown, and met and married the love of her life. Today, Lisa owns her own consulting business, branding major companies, personalities, and businesses for a 2.0 world, as well as re-branding women who are ready to reinvent themselves in love, life, and business at any age.

A frequent media contributor, Lisa has appeared on The Today Show, The Tyra Banks Show, KTLA Morning News, iVillage Live, The Fran Drescher Show, Playboy Radio, and New Zealand’s Good Morning. She regularly contributes content to popular websites including The Huffington Post, MSN, Yahoo Shine, EHarmony, and YourTango.

BUT all of this, is not the reason why Lisa is this week’s Fabulous Friday Female.

I would like to acknoweldge, honour and celebrate Lisa for a different reason today.

Because recently Lisa has had her life kind of turned upside down.  A matter of weeks ago, Lisa went from a woman who was never expecting to have children of her own, to taking in her 2 year old niece, along with her lovely husband (or Hubs, to those in the know).

The fact that in spite of her own inclinations not to have children, Lisa and her husband have stepped up to provide this beautiful little girl with the home, love and support that she needs due to difficulties with her birth parents is beautiful to me.

To hear Lisa talk about how the little ‘wee one’ has changed (and is changing!) her life for the better and to see the journey they are embarking upon together is really heartwarming.

I was a guest on Lisa’s radio show earlier this week, and at the beginning of the show Lisa shared a story about an experience with the ‘wee one’ which will make your heart melt…you can listen to it here: http://bit.ly/GUdq5P

So this is the reason that I would like to acknowledge, honour and celebrate Lisa today…and I invite you all to give a big “Woo hoo!” to Lisa for being our first, and very worthy, Fabulous Friday Female!

If you would like to connect with Lisa, you can find out more about her here: http://lisasteadman.com/

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So, going forward,  I want you to remember that this project is a group effort! I would love to acknowledge, honour and celebrate the women who have inspired you as well.  So if there is someone that you believe should feature as a Fabulous Friday Female, then send me an email (claire@feminine1st.com) with 3 simple details:

  • Who is your Fabulous Friday Female? (Her name and location in the world)
  • Why is she a Fabulous Friday Female to YOU? (How do you know her? What does she do?  In what way is she inspiring?)
  • A photo or link to a picture of her online (if there is a reason that you would prefer not to include a photo, just let me know)

So help me to share with all of our lovely ladies the real women who inspire YOU.

…and remember, as always, to Stay Fabulous too!

Claire x

firsts

2012…a year of firsts for you?

firstsI don’t know whether you remember anything about being a baby…I know that I certainly don’t (I have a hard time remembering what I did yesterday!) but I guarantee that your parents do.

For the first years of your life I bet that every single thing you did for the first time was acknowledged, celebrated, and probably documented.

The first time you smiled.

The first time you rolled over.

Your first solid food.

The first time you crawled.

The first time you stood.

The first time you walked.

Your first haircut.

Your first words.

Your first tooth.

Your first day at school.

The loss of your first tooth.

The list goes on.

If you ask your parents I bet that they will remember most of these events.  Why?  Because they were significant.

So my question is…when did our firsts stop being so significant?

We still have firsts every single year…but most of them pass undocumented, uncelebrated and sometimes even unacknowledged.  🙁

I believe that our firsts are still every bit as important as when we were younger…in some cases even more so.  The older we get, the more unique our firsts become.  As our paths go off in different directions we make different choices…which lead us to different firsts.  Most people have a first tooth…not everyone has a first firewalk!  Most people have a first word…not everyone has a first day starting their own company.  Most people walk for the first time…not everyone has a first dance class.

So as our firsts become more unique, surely they become more noteworthy?

For example, in 2011 my firsts included:

  • Visiting Rimini in Italy
  • Giving Blood
  • Starting my own company
  • Visiting the Gold Coast in Australia
  • Started training for a marathon
  • Did a belly dancing class
  • Qualified as firewalking instructor

…and those are just the big ones…I’m sure there were many more smaller ones which I’ve not remembered.

So how about we bring back the celebration of the ‘first’ for 2012 by keeping a diary of firsts for the year ahead?

The idea is to keep a diary in which you record each of the firsts for the year ahead.  It doesn’t matter how big or how small, if it’s a first, it qualifies.  Every time you add a new entry into the diary, you take a moment to acknowledge and celebrate the ‘first’ you are making a note of.  You can share them online, or just keep them for yourself…but take a moment to acknowledge all the little things that you are doing for the very first time.  It could be something as small as trying a new food for the first time…or as big as climbing Kilimanjaro…or anything in between!

Not only will it mean that we will get to remember, celebrate and (if you choose to) share all of the great things that we’ve never done before…but it will also encourage us to do some of the firsts that we’ve been putting off.  It’s so easy to let life get in the way of the new things that we want to do and try…but if we’re keeping track of our firsts…then maybe we’ll make time for them!  We might actually look into the places we could do that dance class…or book an hour to go an have a manicure for the first time in a salon…or finally book that trip to the place we’ve always wanted to visit…

So my suggestion is to aim to have at least one significant ‘first’ every month in 2012.  So that when you come to review 2012 this time next year you’ll have a whole lot of fantastic memories to look back on and celebrate!

Just think of the fun you could have coming up with new firsts to try…the things you could share in next year’s Christmas cards…the people you could surprise along the way…including yourself! 😀

Make it a game…have some fun with it…maybe you could do it with a friend…maybe you could do it with your partner…maybe you could do it just for yourself.

You could visit a new place for the first time, try a new type of food, learn a dance, do karaoke for the first time, start training for a marathon, learn to juggle, conquer a fear, learn a language…the list is endless!

Stay Fabulous…and make 2012 even more fabulous than 2011!

Claire x

 

Exciting News…

Well I promised you a piece of exciting news yesterday, and in order to make up for the news coming a little late I have not one, but TWO pieces for you!

Feminine 1st is appearing LIVE at not one, but TWO fabulous events in the next three weeks…you heard it here first!

I will be speaking at and co-hosting the fantastic “All Woman Workshop” on Saturday the 10th of December in London – www.allwomanworkshop.com.

In the run up to Christmas and the holiday season (which can be a stressful and overwhelming time of year) give yourself a little gift to ensure that you really enjoy Christmas yourself (as well as making it magical for everyone else) and prepare for 2012 to be your best year yet.  Our four amazing speakers will leave you feeling fabulous, and ready to shine this festive season and beyond!

As well as giving yourself a gift, you will also be giving a gift to someone else, as over 25% of each ticket sold will be donated straight to Breakthrough Breast Cancer (http://www.breakthrough.org.uk/) who are dedicated to improving detection, diagnosis, treatment and services.

…and if that wasn’t enough you will also have an opportunity to do a little Christmas shopping with a variety of Christmas gifts available to buy on the day!

AND you also have the opportunity to add a little to the holiday fund.  There is a fantastic 50% affiliate commission on tickets to “The All Woman Workshop”…so if you bring three friends then your ticket is effectively free!

I’ll be sharing some fantastic content about how to feel fulfilled and fabulous by being feminine first…very exciting!

But why have just one fantastic event when you can have two?!

If you just can’t wait until December the 10th…then I have good news!

I am also speaking at the Styling Stripped Bare’s Christmas Special this Saturday, 27th of November in London – clicky.me/6iZT

The Styling Stripped Bare Worthshop™ Christmas Special is an informative, fun and empowering one day event that will enhance your image, strengthen your brand and help you attract better relationship and career prospects with the gorgeous Tanesha Westcarr.

The day is divided into three main areas Self Confidence, Signature Style and Star Qualities to ensure you leave invigorated to achieve the results you desire with a greater sense of confidence and control.

Tanesha uses her controversial techniques and Inside-Out Formula to help you to Re-brand, Re-invent and Re-style yourself for greater levels of success – both personally and professionally. She works with leading brands like, Hobbs, Body Shop, French Connection and Donna Ida to demonstrate the best and latest season’s must haves that work perfectly for your body and shape.

…and yours truly will be featuring as the top guest speaker!  How exciting! 😀

I’m so excited to be getting out there and meeting some of you in person so soon – so be sure to come and say hello when you see me.

Check out the events page now for all of the details on these fabulous events…and I look forward to seeing you there!

Stay Fabulous!

Claire x

The dreaded s word

The dreaded ‘S’ word – Part 2

The dreaded s wordSo yesterday we talked about the dreaded “S” word…”Should” and that step 1 in solving our “Should” problem is first, to work out and ensure that these beliefs are actually ours.

The second problem with “Shoulds” is that very few people actually do them. How many times do you say “I should lose weight” and then not actually do anything about it? New Year’s resolutions need to be made once every year for a reason…because we don’t stick to them the first time we make them!

So Step 2 in solving our “Should” problem is to banish the word “should” from our vocabulary! If it helps, make yourself a “should” box…every time you use the “S” word, you have to make a donation to the box…for most of us we’d have enough for a new pair of Maonolos by Christmas!

Now, as you probably know, just trying to stop yourself from doing something on its own can be a challenge…so in order to successfully banish the “S” word, we need to replace it with something.

And, believe it or not, the language that we use is massively important to how we end up feeling and we want to make it work for us, not against us. So, whenever you get the urge to use the “S” word, instead change them into either “want to’s”, “get to’s” or “musts”.

“Want to’s” – Think about it…if you have something that you should do, and something that you want to do…which are you likely to do first? Which are you likely to enjoy more? So changing “I should do more exercise” to “I want to do more exercise” actually changes how we feel about “doing more exercise”…even though all we’ve done is change a couple of words. It might seem like a small change, but believe me it makes a big difference!

“Get to’s”- Like the “want to’s” this simple change can make a huge difference to how you feel. So, let’s use a great example which applies in my life on a regular basis: changing “I should go running this morning” to “I get to go running this morning”. Let’s face it; there are thousands of people who would LOVE to be able to go running of a morning (admittedly not those who hit the cocktails a little hard the night before!), but for whatever reason they can’t. Taking something which could otherwise seem like a chore and turning it into something I “get to” do completely changes how I feel about it. Give it a try – you never know, you might enjoy it… 😉

“Musts” – “Shoulds” and “musts” are a world apart. We all know that things that are musts are non-negotiables…we have to ensure that they happen, regardless of the circumstances. Whether they are eating food, drinking water, or paying our rent, we all have them, they just differ from person to person. For one person wearing makeup to leave the house is a must, for someone else it’s a should, for another person it would be something they would consider and for a fourth it would be a must not! It’s all completely subjective. So as you can see, making this small change in language completely changes how we perceive the situation and more importantly how likely we are to act on it. (Note to self…I MUST get a new pair of heels for the Christmas season… 😉 )

The third thing about “Shoulds” is that they also tend to be very non-specific. This makes them that much harder to achieve…or if you do achieve them, you don’t notice that you’ve done it, so you can’t even congratulate yourself for a job well done!

For example, if one of your “Shoulds” was “I should lose some weight”, what does this actually mean? How much weight? By when? If you are aiming to lose “some weight” and you lose 2lbs, then technically you’ve achieved your goal…but I can’t believe that without checking the scales religiously that (1) you’d even notice or (2) if you did notice that you’d be doing a happy dance around your living room to celebrate your great achievement…

Therefore step 3 is get specific! If you want to do something about one of your “want to’s”, “get to’s” or “musts” then be specific about exactly what it is you’re going to do. Now in doing this you need to be reasonable (we don’t want to pressure ourselves to achieve something which would require superhuman skills to do!), but that doesn’t mean that you can’t be ambitious!

So rather than “I should lose some weight”…you could choose to now can say “I want to lose 6lbs in the next 3 months”. This simple change of language can make all the difference in how you feel about your desired outcome and also increases the likelihood of actually achieving it.

Finally when we actually do something that would previously have fallen into the category of “should” we rarely take the time to recognise and acknowledge the fact that we’ve done it! Think about this in terms of being like trying to encourage a child to do something that you want them to do. If you point out or criticise the child every time they do something you don’t want them to do, and never acknowledge them when they do what you want them to, what are the chances that they will actually change their behaviour? Pretty slim right? We need to positively re-inforce the behaviour that we would like repeated so that the child feels good when they do it, which increases their motivation to do it again.

We are no different. We need to take the time to recognise, acknowledge and celebrate the things that we feel we are doing well, in order to encourage ourselves to keep doing them, rather than regularly focusing on what should be done ‘better’.

Therefore the fourth and final step in solving your “should” problem is to remember to always recognise, acknowledge and celebrate the things you are doing well in your life. There are lots of ways that you can do this, and you need to find the way that works for you…as long as it makes you smile it’s doing the job! For me, this was the invention of the “Happy Dance”…30-60 seconds of jumping and dancing around in a silly way with a smile on my face…does the job perfectly!

So now we have all of our steps, I would like to ask you to make a commitment to yourself that rather than using these “shoulds” (which only serve to make you feel bad for no good reason!) that you will choose to change your language in the future to feel good about making the change that you want to make and will also help you to achieve it!

Sound good?

…I think so too… 😉

Stay Fabulous!

Claire x