August 18, 2015

3 Ways to Start Believing You’re Beautiful


Today’s blog post is very special because … it was written by my very dear friend Crystal Cave! Crystal is kind of a big deal. Not only has she been a stylist to some serious A-listers and stellar brands (Taylor Swift, Kate Upton, and Nike to name a few), but she’s also the founder of and is creator of Not So Skinny Style School. She hones her incredible talents to help everyday women realize that impeccable style has no size!

Her post is all about a super important wakeup call she got in the middle of getting hit on by her crush. Read on!

A few years ago, while dressing up for a night out in New York City with friends, I felt pretty good. I wasn’t in one of my go-to feeling-sexy outfits, but the outfit I chose was fun and edgy. I was ready for a night out!

At the restaurant that night, this brilliant, gorgeous, funny guy that I’d been crushing on started flirting with me. I was so excited. I couldn’t believe my luck. The man I adored – so smart, so handsome – was interested in me.

He started to tell me how much he liked the work that I was doing, which made me blush with pride. His compliment of my professional prowess meant the world to me.

But then, he leaned in for a kiss and said, “you’re so beautiful.”

Insert scratched record sound here!

My mind reeled and my head whipped back. What had he just said to me?

Immediately, my inner critic screamed, LIAR!

And before I had time to think, my lips we’re saying the words, “I don’t believe you.”

Needless to say, the night went downhill from there.

But, I learned a very powerful lesson in that moment. The inner healing work I’d started on myself was far, FAR away from truly changing how I felt about my not so skinny body. While I’d learned to take pride in my work, I was still struggling with the idea of being proud of my body.

Even though I could SEE that I looked good – thank you trendy outfit! I didn’t actually believe it. Seeing was NOT believing because I couldn’t FEEL it.

As a result, today, I know that the better, truer, wiser phrase is “feeling is believing.”

That night was one of those “wake-up call” nights for me. I realized I needed to commit to going within and doing the inner healing work to stop the negative talk in my head around my body. Because, it was clear… Affirmations on my mirror weren’t cutting it!

So I took the following 3 steps…

1. Stopped People Pleasing!

I made a commitment to myself that night to live my life the way I wanted!
One way I did this was to stop asking everyone for their opinion on every decision I had to make. I could be a terrible decision maker – sometimes they took me weeks to make. So, I would solicit everyone else’s opinion hoping they could make the decision for me.

However, I realized that subliminally this behavior was sending me the message that “I’m not worthy of making this decision.” A message that was eroding my self confidence. How could a man find me beautiful if I couldn’t make an adult decision on my own?!

The second way I stopped people pleasing was by asking myself “Crystal, why do you believe X?” This gave me a moment to pause and reflect, “Where did this belief come from?” Was I blindly holding onto a belief because it was what my mother, best friend, commerical, article, celebrity said or believed? Did I (me, myself and I) believe it? Or, was I adopting their philosophy as my own?

This simple acknowledgement of where I’d picked up the idea helped to release the power it had over me. Then I could decide, yes or no, if I truly wanted the idea in my personal belief system.

Whew! I spent some serious time cleaning out my thoughts. I put a lot of them in the trash!

2. I Got Inspired.

I realized I’d stopped looking for new inspiration. As an adult, I had stopped thinking of inspiration as a natural part of my day and I considered it more of a luxury …if I had time! This belief was messing with my confidence.

How could I feel good about myself everyday if I wasn’t feeling inspired everyday?

Recently, Pinterest has become my go-to inspiration station! And, I recommend pinning more than your favorite clothing items. Pin colors, patterns, textures, household items, flowers, locations, etc. because eventually all of these elements can be incorporated into your style.

3. I Bought Show-Stopper Dresses!

I bought dresses that hugged my curves to help me fall in love with my body. When I put them on I felt sexy. I felt like a million bucks. I felt like I deserved to have men trip over themselves when they saw me walking down the street.

Even better, splurging on curve hugging dresses started a ripple effect in my closet. I began to replace my predominantly black and baggy clothing with asset hugging, colorful outfits. Wearing them brought my confidence to a whole new level because I was no longer the invisible person in the corner.

The key here? When I made a bold statement with my wardrobe I FELT confident.

Feeling is believing!

If you want to feel sexy, I’d love to invite you to join my 15 day instagram challenge all about feeling is believing. I promise to have you feeling sexy, confident and inspired.

Most of all, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. Why do you struggle with feeling beautiful? And if you’ve broken down the barrier to feeling gorgeous, what did you do to get there? I’m so curious! And I’ll be here to answer every question.

Leave a Comment

I respond to every single comment myself, please leave me one below so we can chat!


  • Michele Morales

    Believing your beautiful at any size is a constant uphill battle in the culture we live in. It’s HARD, because everything you see in the media, tv, magazines tells you otherwise. So I ask myself, why am I allowing my belief system about beauty and seeing myself as beautiful be dominated by the media? Eww! For me, my confidence came from my surety that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. That God sees me as beautiful and for me, that’s really all that matters. I first believed and then I saw. That inner confidence manifests itself on the outside and I don’t feel less than when I’m in a room with a super skinny size zero woman. I also do things that make me feel beautiful. For example, I workout because I genuinely feel good afterwards – more confident, sexy and comfortable with my body. Even if the scale or the tape measure doesn’t show any progress right away. I feel different, I feel beautiful. Thanks for this post Crystal! Your work is amazing and so desperately needed by us women!

    • Nitika

      I SO love this Michele – thank you for sharing your truth….it’s absolutely STUNNING!!! Lots of love xoxo

    • Crystal Cave

      Thank you so much for this beautiful share Michele! “That inner confidence manifests itself on the outside and I don’t feel less than when I’m in a room with a super skinny size zero woman”…I just love that and it’s so true! I’m so honored to able to share this story here and glad it resonated. xo

  • Alissa

    Hi Crystal and Nitika! Do either of you have favorite go-to sources for flattering, curve-hugging dresses?

  • Renee

    Thanks so much for sharing this. My body has changed now that I’m older and I have not accepted it at all. Your inner critic (at the time) and mine must be friends because I totally could see that happening to me. I just need to accept that my body is different and it is not going back. And, I have to work on it every day, right. Thanks for your honesty, really helped me.

    • Crystal Cave

      Renee- you’re welcome! After this happened I, for the first time, started talking about how I felt which helped me realize how many other people feel the same exact way. By talking about it with them, it really helped me and I heard a lot of other funny stories, which lessened my initial embarassment fo this. I hope to be just one of many people that can share their story around this type of thing so we all don’t feel so alone around our experiences in our bodies. xo

  • Lisa McConnell

    The battle for me is against what I USED to look like….back when I first THOUGHT I needed to lose weight. Way back in high school when I was in the low 100s and looked fabulous. Somehow, I now compare myself to this skinny little girl who was hardly a woman yet. After giving birth to three gorgeous girls, who have the body now that I used to, ….I now see that Im not what I used to be. Because of that, I hide. Im truly shocked when I look in the mirror, or go shopping and don’t wear a size I did at 18. Intellectually I understand that I will never ever be that girl again ( and wouldn’t want to on a lot of levels) but my vanity, I suppose, still struggles with not looking like that. I feel less worthy, less attractive, less everything. When someone tells me Im attractive, I balk just like this article says, and I feel like saying ” ugh, you should see me without these clothes on”….which is not a good conversation starter!!!! Im jealous of a body I will never have again, and I don’t even want to start trying to work out or look at myself in the mirror. Totally irrational.

    • Crystal Cave

      Thank you for such a vulnerable share. I had chills and was on the verge of tears reading your entire post. I totally hear everything you’re saying, I’ve been there myself, and hear that from so many of my clients. I’d love to have you view our video training series. I give some tips in there to help you start stepping out. And, I share some small things that I think could be super powerful in helping you start to fall in love with you body again. It’s at – Let me know what you think. There’s a whole community of women supporting each other through it at the moment. And, of course know that I’m sending you so much love!

    • Nitika

      Sending you so so so much love Lisa. Thank you for sharing yourself so bravely on here. I love Crystal’s advice and I hope it shows you that you are not alone. Lots of love xoxo

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