Fashion is Instant Messaging

It’s fashionable to stay hot, happy and healthy forever. It’s also fashionable to wear your favorite things all the time! Don’t save your best outfits for special occasions; every day is special. And, no one ever said granny panties are sexy, ever! Wear beautiful underthings, always!

Fashion is instant messaging. You send a message in an instant about who you are and how you feel about yourself. What message are you sending?

My favorite way to show the world who I am, is by the way I dress. I love playing with fashion and accessories. I shop my closet and dress according to how I feel that day. Some days I feel like dressing a bit artsy and creative. Other days I might feel like going for a more polished/classic look. Fashion is all about creative expression. The key is getting the outside to match the inside.

It’s not so much about matching our shoes with our handbag or our belt. It’s about matching our fashion with our intention. What is our intention when we don an outfit and head out the door? Do you dress according to the audience you’ll be in front of that day? Whether your day involves delivering a closing argument or meeting a new friend for lunch, you want to represent you in your best light. Not to impress; but simply to express who you are.

Truth is, it doesn’t matter what is on our calendar for the day. What matters is that we feel authentic and amazing. That we feel congruent with the instant message we are sending out.

My Mom used to say “When you look good, you feel good and when you feel good, you do good.”
Wear only the things that make you feel good…really good. Not just ok. Because you are amazing and we want the world to see that!

“Fashion is not necessarily about labels. It’s not about brands.
It’s about something else that comes from within you.”

—Ralph Lauren

 
Coming up next week…out of the closet! Stay tuned!

Hormone Balance: Don’t Go Off the Edge

Stay balanced – and I don’t mean balanced on one foot while doing the tree pose in yoga class! A Hot Flashionista knows that keeping her EPT levels balanced is what makes her healthy, happy and oh, so juicy. Knowing your Estrogen, Progesterone and Testosterone levels (or numbers) is as important as knowing all the other “numbers” that are key to your health and happiness. For instance, we probably all know our weight, blood pressure, cholesterol, shoe budget, what 15% off a $200 handbag is; but, do you have any idea what your estrogen level is? How about your progesterone or testosterone?

If you are between the ages of 35 and 51, you may very well be experiencing some symptoms of perimenopause or menopause. The average age for perimenopause is 35. The average age for menopause is 51. There are a lot of us that fall into that category. In fact, there are 70 million of us right here in the good ole’ USA who are entering the divine sisterhood of yo-yo hormones on a daily basis.  You are not alone. Feel better? Good.

How do you get balanced? There are several ways to get tested. The most common method is a simple blood test. To begin, ask your doctor to order the test. Keep in mind though that most doctors including our OB/GYN’s, internists and endocrinologists will only receive 1 to 2 hours of education on menopause and sex education during their medical training. Crazy, right?! The good news is The North American Menopause Society has put into place a certification program for physicians and nurse practitioners to become educated about menopause symptoms and treatment. It’s imperative that you be a persistent and powerful advocate for your health. Demand answers and options for finding solutions. Be patient, my darlings. If you’ve waited too long and your hormones are way out of balance, it may take some time to find the right balance again. Quite often, there is a trial and error period on hormone replacement therapy to find what works best. We don’t want you to settle for what’s “normal”, we want you to discover what is “optimal” for you. So, stick with it. Your health and happiness depend on it! If you need help finding the right doctor/practitioner, call me…it’s what I do…I help you find solutions. The ultimate goal is to have you feeling like a SuperCoolHotFlashionistaLoveThing!

Loving you, loving me…

Self love seems so unrequited.

Loving others is not always easy. Loving yourself isn’t either.

Here’s what I find easy to love: the sound of my husband’s laughter, the smell of my puppy’s head when I nuzzle him, the friend who is constantly mispronouncing words, the thrill of wearing a brand new beautiful top that I just bought at a discount, the joy in my mother’s voice when I call, the smell of blueberry pancakes on a Sunday morning, the nearly illegible scribble of a thank you note written by my 9 year old goddaughter. I could go on and on.

Here’s what I find not so easy to love: Me, when I’m having a bad hair day or my jeans feel too tight. Me, when I’m feeling inadequate or I look in the mirror and see a new wrinkle. Me, when I compare myself to others or don’t get everything done on my to-do list. Me when I doubt my purpose. Me when I deny my greatness. Me when I disown my beauty, strengths, gifts and talents. I could go on and on, but I don’t want to. I don’t want to continue to un-love myself.

Each morning during my prayer and meditation time, I start the day anew, just like you. As I count my blessings and set my intentions for the day, I purposefully intend to be the fullest expression of my loving, joyful and creative self.  And, then somewhere along the way as I go through the day, I start un-loving me.

Self love seems so unrequited, doesn’t it? That needs to change, but how?  How about  noticing the un-loving as soon as it creeps in and redirecting it. How about I kick its ass to the curb and kiss my assertive self hello. How about I assume the position of loving myself with kind thoughts, positive energy and doing the things that make me love who I am. Perhaps I start with something as simple as sharing a laugh with my husband or calling a friend to ask how I can help. Then I know I’ll be on my way. Well on my way to loving myself again and being a force for good in the world. And, hey, if along the way, I happen to fall in love with a fabulous pair of shoes in a store window, then so be it. I will take it as a sign and go in. They might be on sale, right?

Here’s to loving you and loving me.

Hot flash love and a high five!

Kathy

 

Contents may have shifted

The holidays are over. The high holy days of baking are done. The merlot and mistletoe parties have passed. As a result of all this merriment, our contents may have shifted. Jeans feeling a little tight are they? Do you, like me, try and blame the dryer or the dry cleaner? I feel your pain, sister.

Women in menopause cite body image issues as their #1 concern. I surveyed over 150 women for my book “Hot Flashes & Cool Insights” and this was first and foremost on their list. Women bemoaned the jiggle in the middle, the loss of muscle tone and sagging skin in that order. It seems the “midriff crisis” is the most common symptom shared among us. Much of that has to do with a drop in estrogen.

Some experts believe the weight gain that women in menopause complain about isn’t necessarily “gain” but a redistribution of fat. Nice, huh?! According to a review from the International Menopause Society published in the October 2012 issue of the journal Climacteric, the drop in estrogen redirects the process of fat storage in women from the hips to the abdomen. This is what I like to call the “contents may have shifted” phenomenon. Shift into some Spanx, it helps; trust me.

There is also evidence that the gain can’t be blamed entirely on hormonal changes. The truth is, as we get older, we need fewer calories because there’s a shift in body composition from lean muscle mass to fat and a consequent slowdown in metabolism. If you want to maintain your weight as you get older and avoid weight gain, you have to cut back your food intake by about 200 calories per day. The best way to do this is to track your food. Write everything down. There are great websites like www.sparkpeople.com that can help as well as many other well-known diet organizations like Weight Watchers, etc. If you use a mobile app, it’s super easy to keep track and you’ll be surprised to see how many calories you’re consuming if you are truth-tracking it. And, yes, you do have to count the Oreos you thought no one saw you sneak. For super-cute portion control plates, check this out http://www.slimware.com/. I love these; I have the urban safari ones!

The other part of the equation is exercise. There’s no getting around it. Physical activity is an absolute must for weight loss/maintenance and overall good health.  In addition to that, weight bearing exercise such as walking can keep your bones and heart healthy and that, my dears, is super important.  Yoga is really great for stretching and maintaining muscle tone. Holding a plank pose or a downward dog position can be a lot harder than it looks…practice, practice, practice. They call it a yoga practice for a reason. Regular physical activity may also help reduce hot flashes, counter depression, sharpen your thinking, and promote good sleep. Whether you want to shake your cutie booty in a Zumba class or walk your buns off in a 5k, do something good for yourself. Oh, and, a vigorous session or two of the horizontal mambo will burn a few calories too! You know, mattress dancing…nookie-nookie…all that good stuff. Wear your hanky pankys while you do the hokey pokey that’s what it’s all about.

 Hot News Flash -Banging your head against the wall burns 150 calories an hour.

 

From Hot Mess to Hot Flashionista

Don't be a hot mess, be a hot flashionistaEvery day, 6,000 women in the US alone start menopause. It’s estimated that by 2015, 1.7 billion women worldwide will be experiencing some form of menopause.  Think about it. That’s a lot of women hot flashing all at the same time.  We could, inadvertently, adversely affect global warming records. And, perhaps start a few thousand hot flash mobs while we’re at it. Whoo-hoo!

I am on a mission to help women celebrate this stage of life. The change is inevitable… it’s going to happen so we may as well embrace it and have fun with it. Having fun and feeling fabulous is the starting point for the transition from “Hot Mess” to “Hot Flashionista”.  Let’s explore the differences between the two.

As a Hot Mess…

Do you notice that it’s harder and harder to lose weight? Have you given up on looking and feeling your best? Are you sick and tired of sleepless nights? Let’s face it, when we start going through the “change of life” all kinds of craziness ensues. If our hormones are out of whack, we suffer from hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, weight gain, skin changes, forgetfulness and the oh-so-dreaded dried up-ness. Thus resulting in us feeling like a hot mess! We feel powerless to do anything about it. Our bodies are changing. We can’t do the same workouts we used to. Losing weight is not the breeze it used to be. Our contents may have shifted. Our sex drive may have taken a nose dive.

When we feel like a hot mess, our moods change and our priorities shift. We may not feel like making any extra effort anymore. We have forgotten that it’s good to be “clothes-minded”.  It can be hard to pull ourselves out of a slump. We succumb to comfort clothes too often thinking that it’s the easiest way out. But, that’s true, only if you’re staying in. I want to support you in being your best, no matter what. With the exception of wearing the occasional, inadvisable baggy old sweatpants out in public; in that case, I would be compelled to perform a hostile makeover.

We must not give in to the narcotic of nostalgia. It doesn’t do us any good to look back and grieve and grumble about the way things used to be. What we can do, is step forward into new solutions; which leads us directly to the delicious secrets of a Hot Flashionista!

As a Hot Flashionista…

Are you feeling more vital and vibrant than ever before? Have you recovered from the amnesia of your awesomeness? Do you have a mindset that makes you unstoppable? Yes, of course! Why? Because, we know that, first and foremost, getting our hormones in balance is the key to great health. We understand that a sexual being is a happy being. We know the value of practicing healthy habits with consistency. We are smarter, sexier and savvier than ever before.   We want to look our best, feel our best and do our best.  And, this is why we never save the best for last. Whether it’s our favorite go-to dress that makes us look smashing or our finest china, we know that every day is a celebration.

Did you know that women think about fashion 91 times a day? A Hot Flashionista puts time into deciding what to wear and she has fun doing it. She knows how to shop her own closet.  She’s unafraid to try new things. Have you learned to be intentional with the way you dress? Dressing with intention, from the literal point of view, means being intentional with the message you are conveying. What do you want say? Do you want to be taken seriously? Are you giving yourself permission to dress in a way that’s unique to you?  Many fashion rules have fallen by the wayside and it’s positively liberating.  Pretty much anything goes now…well, almost.  Shoulder pads, jeggings and mall hair will never be back in style, God willing.

We know that connection with ourselves and others keeps us balanced, rooted and grounded.  Creating a community of support is what we do best. We are all in this together and together we will make this change of life suck less and rock more!