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A woman wants a man who will help her feel important even when she can't be the priority

This Week’s Thursday Thought: A woman wants a man who will help her feel important even when she can’t be the priority

This week’s Thursday Thought:

A woman wants a man who will help her feel important even when she can’t be the priority

A woman wants a man who will help her feel important even when she can't be the priority

Fabulous Friday Female Mama Hill

Today’s Fabulous Friday Female is Mama Hill

Fabulous Friday Female Mama HillAs soon as I saw the title of this video, I knew I would enjoy it.

“The Healing Power of Hugs”

…I didn’t realise how deeply it would touch me.

Mama Hill is a remarkable woman, who has given over her home and her life to helping young people who have nowhere else to go.

Teaching self respect, random acts of kindness and the power of love…she is transforming lives.

Rather than telling you her story in my own words…I’ll instead invite you to hear it directly from the kids that she is helping.

So grab a mug of something lovely to drink, and take a few minutes to watch this story that will touch your heart…

Mama Hill is a beautiful soul, and today I would like you to join me in acknowledging and celebrating this incredible woman who has dedicated her life to others.  I hope she inspires you to share some random acts of kindness of your own…

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

  • Who is your Fabulous Friday Female / Fellow? (Her / his name and location in the world)
  • Why is she / he a Fabulous Friday Female / Fellow to YOU? (How do you know her / him? What does she / he do? In what way is she / he inspiring?)
  • A photo or link to a picture of her / him 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 and men who inspire YOU.

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

Claire x

Communication Secrets: Expect Women to Interpret Everything & Expect Men to Interpret Nothing

This Week’s Thursday Thought: Communication Secrets – Expect Women to Interpret Everything & Expect Men to Interpret Nothing

This week’s Thursday Thought:

Communication Secrets – Expect Women to Interpret Everything & Expect Men to Interpret Nothing

Communication Secrets: Expect Women to Interpret Everything & Expect Men to Interpret Nothing

FFF Seth Adam Smith

Today’s Fabulous Friday Fellow is Seth Adam Smith

FFF Seth Adam SmithIf I told you that today’s Fabulous Friday Fellow, having recently got married, has decided that marriage isn’t for him, you might be surprised.

In fact, you might think the guy is actually a bit of a jerk.

But you’d be wrong.

Because this week Seth Adam Smith posted an article on his blog that blew me away.

…and rather than try and explain it, it’s much easier to just share it here…and allow you to draw your own conclusions:

Having been married only a year and a half, I’ve recently come to the conclusion that marriage isn’t for me.

Now before you start making assumptions, keep reading.

I met my wife in high school when we were 15 years old. We were friends for ten years until…until we decided no longer wanted to be just friends. 🙂 I strongly recommend that best friends fall in love. Good times will be had by all.

Nevertheless, falling in love with my best friend did not prevent me from having certain fears and anxieties about getting married. The nearer Kim and I approached the decision to marry, the more I was filled with a paralyzing fear. Was I ready? Was I making the right choice? Was Kim the right person to marry? Would she make me happy?

Then, one fateful night, I shared these thoughts and concerns with my dad.

Perhaps each of us have moments in our lives when it feels like time slows down or the air becomes still and everything around us seems to draw in, marking that moment as one we will never forget.

My dad giving his response to my concerns was such a moment for me. With a knowing smile he said, “Seth, you’re being totally selfish. So I’m going to make this really simple: marriage isn’t for you. You don’t marry to make yourself happy, you marry to make someone else happy. More than that, your marriage isn’t for yourself, you’re marrying for a family. Not just for the in-laws and all of that nonsense, but for your future children. Who do you want to help you raise them? Who do you want to influence them? Marriage isn’t for you. It’s not about you.Marriage is about the person you married.”

It was in that very moment that I knew that Kim was the right person to marry. I realized that I wanted to make herhappy; to see her smile every day, to make her laugh every day. I wanted to be a part of her family, and my family wanted her to be a part of ours. And thinking back on all the times I had seen her play with my nieces, I knew that she was the one with whom I wanted to build our own family.

My father’s advice was both shocking and revelatory. It went against the grain of today’s “Walmart philosophy”, which is if it doesn’t make you happy, you can take it back and get a new one.

No, a true marriage (and true love) is never about you. It’s about the person you love—their wants, their needs, their hopes, and their dreams. Selfishness demands, “What’s in it for me?”, while Love asks, “What can I give?”

Some time ago, my wife showed me what it means to love selflessly. For many months, my heart had been hardening with a mixture of fear and resentment. Then, after the pressure had built up to where neither of us could stand it, emotions erupted. I was callous. I was selfish.

But instead of matching my selfishness, Kim did something beyond wonderful—she showed an outpouring of love. Laying aside all of the pain and aguish I had caused her, she lovingly took me in her arms and soothed my soul.

Marriage is about family.

I realized that I had forgotten my dad’s advice. While Kim’s side of the marriage had been to love me, myside of the marriage had become all about me. This awful realization brought me to tears, and I promised my wife that I would try to be better.

To all who are reading this article—married, almost married, single, or even the sworn bachelor or bachelorette—I want you to know that marriage isn’t for you. No true relationship of love is for you. Love is about the person you love.

And, paradoxically, the more you truly love that person, the more love you receive. And not just from your significant other, but from their friends and their family and thousands of others you never would have met had your love remained self-centered.

Truly, love and marriage isn’t for you. It’s for others.

There are so many pieces of this that I love.  The understanding that sometimes love and compassion in the face of selfishness can open a heart wider than you can imagine. The clear explanation that relationships don’t work if you go there just to get…and they can be incredible when you go there to give.

I would also like to point out that this article is not only for men.  These principles apply universally. You get out what you put in, whether you’re a man or a woman.

So today I would like you to join me in honouring and celebrating Seth and his words…I hope they inspire you to look at relationships in a whole new way.

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

  • Who is your Fabulous Friday Female / Fellow? (Her / his name and location in the world)
  • Why is she / he a Fabulous Friday Female / Fellow to YOU? (How do you know her / him? What does she / he do? In what way is she / he inspiring?)
  • A photo or link to a picture of her / him 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 and men who inspire YOU. …and remember, as always, to Stay Fabulous too!

Claire x

Thursday Thought Quote: If you want to become inspired inspire others, if you want to inspire others become inspired

This Week’s Thursday Thought: If you want to become inspired, inspire others. If you want to inspire others, become inspired.

This week’s Thursday Thought:

If you want to become inspired, inspire others. If you want to inspire others, become inspired.

Thursday Thought Quote: If you want to become inspired inspire others, if you want to inspire others become inspired

Aspects of the FEMININE - I - Inspiration - Claire Brummell, Feminine 1st

Aspects of the feminine…What’s your inspiration?

Aspects of the FEMININE - I - Inspiration - Claire Brummell, Feminine 1stIt’s time to take another step deeper into the aspects of the feminine…and at the end of this video we’ll be halfway there along our journey!

It’s so important for you as a feminine woman to be able to really get to know the different aspects of the feminine, and to understand what they mean for you personally.

…and I’m really curious to hear how you’ve found the different aspects of the feminine that we’ve spoken about so far, and the difference that getting to know them better is having for you.

So please do get in touch and let me know about your experiences.

What’s your inspiration?

Inspiration, as we know, means different things to different people.

Some find inspiration in other people, others in nature, some in a piece of music, others in a game of sport.

But the great thing is, that although we do it in different ways EVERYONE has the ability to become inspired.

The power of inspiration…

…and when we tap into what inspires us, it’s like connecting into the mains.

We feel lit up.

We feel energised.

We feel alive.

We feel motivated.

It completely changes us.

When it comes to femininity though, there are two different perspectives on inspiration…and as a feminine woman it’s really important to understand them both.

So today I’m going to share with you a little more about them, and how you can bring both of them into your life…

 

If you are already a Feminine 1st Family Member of Bronze Level or above, click here to see the full video

So how can you bring BOTH aspects of inspiration into your life?

I would love to share more with you about this and so many incredible topics, and so I’d like to invite you today to join the Feminine 1st Family as a Bronze Member or to become a Free Member to enjoy over 80 Free Videos.

What does Bronze Membership Give Me? Well in addition to all of the features of our Free Membership (including the “First Steps to Femininity” MP3 and over 80 free videos), you will also get access to all future premium Feminine 1st videos for the duration of your membership. You will also have the opportunity to submit requests for topics to be covered or questions to be answered in these weekly videos.

So click here to find out how to bring both aspects of inspiration into your life!

Stay Fabulous,

Claire x

Today’s Fabulous Friday Female is Alexandra Watson!

AlexandraWatson001-150x150Whenever I speak in public, I always begin my telling my story…why?  Because it helps me to connect with the people who are in the audience, and it helps them to connect with me.  Every time I tell my story at an event, someone comes up and shares with me how much they appreciated me doing so…because they heard something in my story that resonated with their own.

Stories are powerful. When you hear a story that you resonate with, it creates a connection with the other person…a mutual understanding.  Which is why I’m sharing today’s Fabulous Friday Female with you today…because when I heard Alexandra Watson’s story for the first time, I heard a lot of my own story in it.

Alexandra Watson is an incredibly inspiring woman…who went from feeling uninspired and unfulfilled in her work to creating her own business that led her to coaching Leona Lewis on the X-factor.  If you’ve ever felt “there must be more than this” when heading into work on a Monday morning, I highly encourage you to take a few moments and listen to Alexandra’s story and pearls of wisdom.

…and today is a very exciting day! Because today is the first time ever that I have had a Fabulous Friday Female join me for an EXCLUSIVE interview to share with the Feminine 1st community, and I’m delighted that Alexandra made time in her busy schedule so that I could help her share her story with you:

What’s even more exciting is that Alexandra has invited me to come and share my own story…as well as some fantastic new content “Relationships are the key to shining in life” at her “Time to Shine Conference” on November 8th and 9th, here in London, visit the events page here to see all of the details.

…even better, I have 5 FREE Gold tickets (retail value £147+VAT) and 6 FREE Silver tickets (retail value £97+ VAT) to give to the Feminine 1st community so that you can come along to the event, see my new content live and meet me in person!

To claim your free ticket simply email me by clicking here now with your name, email address and telephone number and you could be joining me on the day!  The tickets will be given out on a first come, first served basis so the quicker you email, the better!

…and finally I would like you to join me in acknowledging and celebrating Alexandra for sharing her inspiring story…and helping other women to create inspiring stories of their own by living the life they’ve always wanted. 

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

  • Who is your Fabulous Friday Female / Fellow? (Her / his name and location in the world)
  • Why is she / he a Fabulous Friday Female / Fellow to YOU? (How do you know her / him? What does she / he do? In what way is she / he inspiring?)
  • A photo or link to a picture of her / him 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 and men who inspire YOU.

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

Claire x

This Week’s Thursday Thought: Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage…and when the ‘someone’ is yourself it gives you more than you can possibly imagine

This week’s Thursday Thought:

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage…and when the ‘someone’ is yourself it gives you more than you can possibly imagine

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage...and when the 'someone' is yourself it gives you more than you can possibly imagine

This Week’s Fabulous Friday Female is Iris Higgins

Fabulous Friday Female Iris HigginsAs someone who has had issues with her own body image in the past, I’ve been on more than my fair share of diets.

In the past I tried all sorts to have the body I wanted…or rather the body I had convinced myself that I should have based on a lifetime assault of ‘thin-obssessed’ media.

I did slim fast, I did atkins, I did slimming world, you name it I tried it.

…and I’ve become increasingly concerned by the conveyor belt of new ‘diet fads’ that have been hitting the market in the last few years, from pills that stop you absorbing fat (and cause all kinds of nasty side effects) to the newest brand of meal-replacement shakes and the latest diet-in-a-can ready meals that have so few fresh ingredients that they can be stored for weeks without so much as looking at a fridge.

So with the past I have with food and body image, when I read this open apology from Iris Higgins (featured on YourFairyAngel.com and HuffingtonPost.com), an ex-weight-loss consultant for a large weight-loss company, it spoke to me.

I won’t say any more about it…I’ll let Iris’s words speak for themselves…but if you’ve ever had any questions about your body or your eating, trust me, this is one to read.

I worked at a popular weight loss company for 3 years. I loved my job there. I LOVED my clients. I loved making a connection and sharing my knowledge. And I learned a lot about nutrition, about dieting and weight loss and what works and what doesn’t. My job was to be a weight loss consultant, and I learned that job very well. I can design a 1200 calorie meal plan, tell you which activities are most likely to make the number on the scale go down, and how many carbs are in a cup of rice. I can talk the diet game like it’s my business…because it was. Volumize with vegetables. Don’t go too long in between meals. Start with a bowl of broth-based soup. Are you drinking enough water? Did you exercise enough? Did you exercise too much? Let’s look at your food journal…

This is not an anti-weight loss company post (although I could write that too). It’s a letter to each and every woman that I unknowingly wronged. My heart is beating a little bit faster as I write this, and so I know this needs to be said. The words have been playing in my head for months. Sometimes it just takes time for me to get up the courage to say the right thing.

So here goes:

Dear Former Weight Loss Clients (you know who you are): 

I’m sorry. 

I’m sorry because I put you on a 1200 calorie diet and told you that was healthy. I’m sorry because when you were running 5x a week, I encouraged you to switch from a 1200 calorie diet to a 1500 calorie diet, instead of telling you that you should be eating a hell of a lot more than that. I’m sorry because you were breastfeeding and there’s no way eating those 1700 calories a day could have been enough for both you and your baby. I’m sorry because you were gluten intolerant and so desperate to lose weight that you didn’t put that on your intake form. But you mentioned it to me later, and I had no idea the damage you were doing to your body. I’m sorry because I think I should have known. I think I should have been educated better before I began to tell all of you what was right or wrong for your body. 

I’m sorry because I made you feel like a failure and so you deliberately left a message after the center had closed, telling me you were quitting. I thought you were awesome and gorgeous, and I’m sorry because I never told you that. I’m sorry because you came in telling me you liked to eat organic and weren’t sure about all the chemicals in the food, and I made up some BS about how it was a “stepping stone.” I’m sorry because many of you had thyroid issues and the LAST thing you should have been doing was eating a gluten-filled, chemically-laden starvation diet. I’m sorry because by the time I stopped working there, I wouldn’t touch that food, yet I still sold it to you. 

I’m sorry because it’s only years later that I realize just how unhealthy a 1200 calorie diet was. I stayed on a 1200-1500 calorie diet for years, so I have the proof in myself. Thyroid issues, mood swings, depression, headaches…oh and gluten intolerance that seemed to “kick in” after about a month of eating the pre-packaged food. Was it a coincidence? Maybe. 

I’m sorry because you had body dysmorphic disorder, and it was so painful to hear the things you said about yourself. You looked like a model, and all of my other clients were intimidated by you, asked me why you were there because clearly you didn’t need to lose weight. And yet you would sit in my office and cry, appalled that a man might see you naked and be disturbed by the fat that didn’t actually exist. I’m sorry because you should have been seeing a therapist, not a weight loss consultant. 

I’m sorry because you were young and so beautiful and only there because your mother thought you needed to lose weight. And because there were too many of you like that. Girls who knew you were fine, but whose mothers pushed that belief out of you until you thought like she did. Until you thought there was something wrong with you. And the one time I confronted your mother, you simply got switched to a different consultant. I think I should have made more of a stink, but I didn’t. I’m sorry because you were in high school and an athlete, and I pray that you weren’t screwed up by that 1500 calorie diet. Seriously, world? Seriously? A teenage girl walks in with no visible body fat and lots of muscle tone, tells you she’s a runner and is happy with her weight…but her mother says she’s fat and has to lose weight and so we help her do just that. As an individual, as women, as a company, hell, as a nation, we don’t stand up for that girl? What is wrong with us? There ain’t nothing right about that. Nothing. 

I’m sorry because every time you ate something you “shouldn’t” or ate more than you “should,” I talked about “getting back on the bandwagon.” I cringe now every time someone uses that phrase. When did the way we eat become a bandwagon? When did everyone stop eating and become professional dieters? I’m sorry because I get it now. If you’re trying to starve your body by eating fewer calories than it needs, of course it’s going to fight back. I used to tell you that then, when you wanted to eat less than 1200 calories a day. The problem was, I thought 1200 was enough. I thought that was plenty to support a healthy body. Why did I believe that for so long? I’m sorry because I wasn’t trying to trick you or play games to get your money. I believed the lies we were fed as much as you did. 

And it wasn’t just the company feeding them to me. It was the doctors and registered dietitians on the medical advisory board. It was the media and magazines confirming what I was telling my clients. A palm-sized portion of lean chicken with half a sweet potato and a salad was PLENTY. No matter that you had “cravings” afterward. Cravings are a sign of underlying emotional issues. Yeah, sure they are. I’m a hypnotherapist with a past history of binge eating disorder. I KNOW cravings are a sign of underlying emotional issues. Except when they’re not. Except when they’re a sign that your body needs more food and you’re ignoring it. Then they’re a sign that your 1200 calorie diet is horseshit. Then they’re a sign that you’ve been played. 

And that’s mostly why I’m sorry. Because I’ve been played for years, and so have you, and inadvertently, I fed into the lies you’ve been told your whole life. The lies that say that being healthy means nothing unless you are also thin. The lies that say that you are never enough, that your body is not a beautiful work of art, but rather a piece of clay to be molded by society’s norms until it becomes a certain type of sculpture. And even then, it is still a work in progress. 

I owe you an apology, my former client and now friend, who I helped to lose too much weight. Who I watched gain the weight back, plus some. Because that’s what happens when you put someone on a 1200 calorie diet. But I didn’t know. If you’re reading this, then I want you to know that you have always been beautiful. And that all these fad diets are crap meant to screw with your metabolism so that you have to keep buying into them. I think now that I was a really good weight loss consultant. Because I did exactly what the company wanted (but would never dare say). I helped you lose weight and then gain it back, so that you thought we were the solution and you were the failure. You became a repeat client and we kept you in the game. I guess I did my job really well.  

And now I wonder, did I do more harm than good? When I left, you all wrote me cards and sent me flowers. I still have those cards, the ones that tell me how much I helped you, how much I cared. But I’m friends with some of you on Facebook now, and I look at your photos and you look happy. And beautiful. And not because you lost weight since I saw you last. But because I see YOU now. You. Not a client sitting in my chair, asking for my assistance in becoming what society wants. But you, a smart and lovely woman, who really doesn’t need some random company telling her there’s something wrong with her. 
  
So I’m sorry because when you walked in to get your meal plan, I should have told you that you were beautiful. I should have asked you how you FELT. Were you happy? Did you feel physically fit? Were you able to play with your kids? There were so many of you who never needed to lose a pound, and some of you who could have gained some. And maybe sometimes I told you that. But not enough. Not emphatically. Because it was my job to let you believe that making the scale go down was your top priority. And I did my job well.  

I am sorry because many of you walked in healthy and walked out with disordered eating, disordered body image, and the feeling that you were a “failure.” None of you ever failed. Ever. I failed you. The weight loss company failed you. Our society is failing you. 

Just eat food. Eat real food, be active, and live your life. Forget all the diet and weight loss nonsense. It’s really just that. Nonsense. 

And I can’t stop it. But I can stop my part in it. I won’t play the weight loss game anymore. I won’t do it to my body, and I won’t help you do it to yours. That’s it. End game.  

Luckily in the last few years I have come to love my body, and have learned that as with all things in life, balance is key, and listening to what my body says it wants and needs is the best path for me personally.  But not every woman has got to this place yet, so I hope that Iris’s open apology speaks to you in the way it spoke to me.

…and today I would like you to join me in acknowledging and celebrating Iris and her courageous and powerful message to women everywhere.

You are beautiful.

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

  • Who is your Fabulous Friday Female / Fellow? (Her / his name and location in the world)
  • Why is she / he a Fabulous Friday Female / Fellow to YOU? (How do you know her / him? What does she / he do? In what way is she / he inspiring?)
  • A photo or link to a picture of her / him 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 and men who inspire YOU.

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

Claire x

This Week’s Thursday Thought: A girl blames others for her situation, a woman owns her part, grows and moves on

This week’s Thursday Thought:

A girl blames others for her situation, a woman owns her part, grows and moves on

A girl blames others for her situation. A woman owns her part, grows, and moves on, Claire Brummell, Feminine 1st