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Bachata, Livestreaming and Clarity...

Leah Patterson

Hey siStar!

How has your week been? Mine has been filled with the ups and downs of life. I've had some very low points and thankfully some ecstatically high points and my week is ending settled somewhere nicely in between. Lots of gratitude for that :-).

I have a busy weekend ahead of myself also with judging and teaching in Memphis. I'm judging a bachata contest tonight and tomorrow I'm teaching a ladies styling workshop. And the most unique thing happening is that after my workshop, I'm going to have a little informal talk with the attendees about how dance can be a powerful form of self-empowerment for women. I always imply this and if you've been with me for a while, you probably already know that I feel this way. However I've never combined both my dance world and my personal development world in the same offering. 

It's what I've been wanting to do though. So when the universe dropped this opportunity for a workshop in my lap in a place where people already know me well, I knew I had to take the chance to move the vision forward just a bit. 

So I'm curiously hopeful and expecting of a really gratifying experience and I will of course report back about how it all goes. (And if you are wondering will I mention MOVE, of course I will! Sweatproof, natural makeup is absolutely empowering, especially for dancers.). 

Before I say adieu this week, I want to leave you with my latest livestream on my personal Facebook page. Yesterday eve I talked all about the new direction that I'm boldly headed in with my coaching work. It's what I've always been doing but just hadn't realized. Watch it here and let me know your thoughts in the comments. I would love to hear what you think about it! 

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The Gift of Gallstones

I’ve been sitting down to write this blogpost for a few days now and each time, have either just felt uninspired or actually ran out of time. There’s so much going on in my life, tons of lessons and insights I want to share :). Tons of growth opportunities and ways to make powerful choices in the moment.

But so my message doesn’t get too long and you can get on with your day without feeling stressed over reading for ten minutes, let me tell you about one of the most impactful things.

Just about a little over a week ago, I found myself in the emergency room in NWA in immense pain afraid that something was really wrong. Let me backtrack to a few weeks ago, about a month and a half to be exact. That’s when I first started to feel nauseous all the time. I was feeling nauseated every day almost without fail. At first of course, I wondered if I was pregnant, then my cycle came and I just thought it might be a factor of getting older and my PMS symptoms changing. Then I realized that it just wasn’t going away and that’s when I went to the doctor. He couldn’t figure out any causes so he prescribed acid reflux medicine and told me to basically wait it out. I had one bad night of vomiting but I just chalked it up to too much pizza and wine.

At the emergency room is where I found out that I have gallstones. Insert a sad face and a surprised face. Are you thinking what I’m thinking - that is, if you even know what gallstones are?

That’s right, how do *I* have gallstones?

I’m not overweight. I eat healthier than most. I’m active. I’m constantly working on my emotional blocks (because all physical ailments are rooted in emotional space).

It just honestly doesn’t make much sense.

Yet we know that there are tons of things in our lives that make little sense. The joy of life comes in accepting what is with gratitude and moving forward expecting that things are already getting better.  

So after an initial few shaky days after my diagnosis feeling afraid to eat and like it was unfair that the universe would give me this to deal with too, I’ve been able to get my bearings and my perspective back. I’ve been able to easily choose to see the gift in this diagnosis instead of the burden.

Remember a few weeks ago when I said I was committing to getting my health back on track the way I feel best? Well now I have major motivation! The age old saying is that pain is the most effective motivator. The pain of a gallstone attack is something that I pray to the Universe that I never experience ever again.

It’s been SUPER easy to say no to cookies, fast food, ice cream, treats, processed foods, etc. All of the things that everyone should be eating in moderation at the most, I can’t eat at all now (save for maybe once a year and that’s only if i take the right precautions before and after).

I admit that It’s been a challenge figuring out what I can eat and I’ve had some real shaky moments at checkout counters where I was close to tears trying to order what I thought would be ok.

But I feel like I’m getting my balance back. I can say that this week, I’ve mostly felt pretty good. The all-the-time nausea has mostly subsided and although some foods bring on that uncomfortable feeling, I’ve been able to manage it and make note. The best thing is that I have NOT had another attack. And another little happy - I’ve lost about 7 pds already. Who knew that my occasional cookie or Chick-Fila meal was having such an effect!

So I am determined to manage this with being even more mindful about my diet and keeping up with my commitment to exercise. I do have an appointment with a surgeon that removes gallbladders on Tuesday because conventional  medicine says once you have gallstone problems, you always will and you must get it out. I’m going to do my best to hold on to mine though unless the doctor tells me it truly is damaged. I feel encouraged however by how much better I’ve been feeling already.

I’m willing to continue walking my path with this new addition without letting it change my stride :-). And at the least, it will definitely give me more interesting things to share with you down the road.


Have you gotten your copy of 3 Beauty Rituals for Phenomenal Self Care? If not, click here to request it!

 

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Getting my stamina back!

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Getting my stamina back!

So today I had a health assessment and let's just say that it was a little bit overwhelming. Finding out truths about yourself that you were secretly afraid were true but were trying not to admit is a little unbecoming to say the least. 

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Inner/Outer Beauty Activation Package

A few days ago I was hit with some wonderful inspiration around creating an offering that would provide a solid foundation for activating both inner and outer beauty. You know I'm all about how we want to match up our outer enhancements with a beautiful inner self that shines through no matter what!

SO my inspiration has resulted in the Inner/Outer Beauty Activation Package!

It's 3-fold. This is what I will do for you:

Firstly, I want you to know what is blocking your ability to shine confidently. What's holding you back from stepping fully into what you are being drawn to? What hidden doubts, secrets, worries and fears lie right beneath the surface waiting to be seen and resolved? I will do an intuitive tarot reading for you shining the light on these things so that you can finally take the steps forward that you've been wanting to for so long.

This reading will be the basis for what comes next. What comes next is the assembly of your special MOVE Makeup Inner to Outer Beauty makeup set. You'll receive your confidence building basics - full-size foundation, concealer, and veil. More importantly though, you'll receive a specially customized eyeshadow set designed to address the blocks that came up in your reading. If you haven't read my article about how eyeshadow can be used for empowerment, go do that now (http://www.bestkeptself.com/whats-your-color-eyeshadows-for-empowerment/).

Lastly, you'll receive an essential oil blend that I customize just for you to enhance and anchor in your reading and to inspire within you new courage to shine confidently.

The investment for all of this is $97.

I'm excited about this. I'm excited to see who takes me up on this offer and truly if *anyone* takes me up on this offer. I'm excited to see how the inspiration to create this package leads me to the next thing for me.

I have no idea if I will offer this again. I have no idea how many of these I will actually accept doing. I don't have a fancy page created for this offering or even a listing in my store or jazzed up picture (I'm working on that though ;-)). I've just felt inspired to do it and this is how that inspiration is manifesting <3.

Thank you sistar for your awesomeness! If I can serve you with this, message me (on mobile you might have to copy and paste info@leahpatterson.com) and we will get started!

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What I learned from Maxwell

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What I learned from Maxwell

Maxwell is hands down one of my favorite artists. Easily. I’ve been listening to this man for over 20 years and this past Thursday, I made that realization as I sat at his concert here in Little Rock. Just watching this amazingly charismatic man so comfortable in his own skin rock it out on stage was magickal.

 

It  made me think about all the reasons that I appreciate Maxwell so much - especially since I’ve been fortunate to see him in concert now twice :-D. My favorite crooner has some awesome life lessons for you if you pay attention ;-).

 

In reflecting, I believe the number one lesson he offers by example is this: Be comfortable in your own skin at all costs.

 

Happy Me at the concert!

Happy Me at the concert!

Each time I’ve seen Maxwell, he has been his quirky, slightly goofy, dancing crazily but with abandonment self on stage. It’s like he is having the time of his life engaging with us and we just happen to be watching. Pay attention to that statement. He is FULLY engaged with the crowd - totally into them - but not at all concerned whether they are digging him or thinking he is a nutter butter. It’s like he is in his own little world that we are in too. It’s really an amazing thing to behold and be a part of.

 

I wonder if he learned this early on in his career after his first round of black college tours opening for the Fugees - or if he always had it. Taking you back a bit in my own history, I remember when he came through town during Howard’s Homecoming. People booed him right off the stage. I mean vehemently booed him. I think someone might have even thrown something. It was horrible (and embarrassing to me as a Howardite that we’d act that way!).

 

I wonder if experiencing something like that multiple times (sadly ours was not the only campus that booed him) created within him a resolve to enjoy who *he* was no matter what and at all costs.

 

I ask this because Maxwell has not changed. The same bubbly, quirky dude that was on stage back when I was 20 something is the same one that was on stage this past week - just happy to be himself, happy to be doing something he loved, happy to be in that moment with us. Yes, his look has changed (as mine has from the hippy, witchy granola, engineering/viola-playing, hip-hop flowerchild that I was in my early 20s) as he’s grown up and evolved, but his essential essence is very much the same. And that my friends, I can only imagine is no small feat in his industry.

 

So that, in addition to the pure awesomeness of Maxwell in concert, is what I took away from my experience last Thursday.

 

The gist is this: You are going to have haters and naysayers. You might have some people that try to push you right out the door with shame and ridicule for what you are trying to do and who you even are at your very core.

 

The bottom line is that you can’t let it stop you dear. Yes, you can rest. You can recoup. You can even lament (I remember that there was a time when everything was angsty with Maxwell). But past that, you must keep it moving. Your world depends on it and what’s even more magickal is that *THE* world depends on it.

 

Just like Maxwell inviting us into his world but not being too concerned about whether we liked it or not created this wonderful over 20-year career of his, welcoming others into your world by being unapologetically yourself BUT not really giving too many cares about what someone thinks about it - that’s the difference maker between 20 years of continued, growing awesomeness...and 20 years of misery- pointe blanke. And 20 years of you living in your awesomeness instead of your misery - imagine what kind of ripple effect that would have on the world?

 

Which one are you going to choose?

Maxwell Concert, Little Rock, Ar

Maxwell Concert, Little Rock, Ar

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You are never Unworthy

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You are never Unworthy

What’s helping me today is realizing that I’m allowing this thing to mean something that ultimately boils down to invalidating me. I’m allowing this occurrence to make me question my value and place the decision maker outside of myself. And although that’s so easy to do, it’s never the right thing to do.
You really have to get to a point in your life where your sense of value is maybe shakable but never breakable.

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The Power of Lipgloss

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The Power of Lipgloss

Lipgloss can be used as a source of empowerment. Learn how lipgloss empowers women and how you can get yourself motivated the next time you need a mojo boost.

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Why I've always hated mattes and why you should too...

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Why I've always hated mattes and why you should too...

Ook ok ok..that’s harsh. I haven’t always hated mattes and truth be told, I don’t hate them now. BUT I admit that they are colors that I’ve had to grow into. My default for mattes had always been - why bother? If you can barely see it, what the heck is the point??

I’m particularly referring to eyeshadow here. I actually love a nude lip because it looks refined and interesting - not dull and like lip balm. Which is kind of what I would equate browns and beiges and other neutral matte tones to if I’m being honest. Super dull, lip balm like eye color. Again, I would say to myself and everyone else - why bother.

I’ve grown a bit since those times and now I can appreciate a sweet neutral eyeshadow in a muted tone, but I will be honest, the shimmery brown is almost always going to win out over the basic brown if I’m given a choice. I sparkle. Period.

So you can imagine my initial chagrin when I realized that OMG, my people like mattes. They actually adore mattes, even aghast prefer mattes. And neutral barely there eyeshadows.

Just recently I posted two new eyeshadow set hopefuls for the upcoming MOVE Makeup #BohoFit collection and what I found was that I got more thumbs up for the neutral pallette than for the bold one. After I cried a little inside, I became fascinated with the possibilities of what this might mean.  And I saw a great opportunity for growth blooming from something seemingly random.

 

Why are some women more attracted to neutral, muted tones than they are to bright bold ones?

 

I’m going to step out on a limb here and say that this has something to do with

1. Our conditioning and
2. Our uncomfortableness with proclaiming our innate beauty.
 

Now you might try to stop me right here and say no Leah - this is about not looking like a clown.

I’m going to challenge you though and say really? Is that really what it’s about? Because we have countless examples these days of how bold color can be worn in classy, professional, ‘I am an adult boss babe and I command respect’ ways.

So no, I don’t believe it’s really about that.

This is what I believe is really going on.

We are afraid.

We are afraid to be seen because being seen means possibly being judged. And being judged means possibly being confronted with deciding for yourself whether you accept or reject the judgement.

And sheesh, that’s just work.

Much easier to just to go on wearing those barely there, acceptable sparkle-absent blahs and not making any waves. Not nearly as fun or vibrant or life inspiring. But easier? Yes, definitely easier.


 So of course, you know I must challenge you. The new collection will be released towards the end of the next 3 weeks. There will be a beautiful neutral eyeshadow set reminiscent of the regal royalty of Queen Pharaohs. But there will also be a phenomenally fabulous bold pallete created for the Gypsy Queen of her own domain.

My challenge to you is to challenge your own default. If you are inclined to think you like the neutrals more than the bolds, bring a little gypsy into your life this go around. Even if you just choose one Gypsy Queen Color - embrace it and wear it with aplumb and audacity. (Don’t worry, I will be giving you lots of assistance in pulling this off!). See how you feel. Pay attention. Embrace the awkward phase and ride it out to the confident one.

While you are waiting for the collection to be available, go check your makeup bag. I’m sure you have one or two bold colors that you’ve never attempted to wear. Take a tiny risk and apply it to your wrist. Notice how you can’t take your eyes away from it. Leave it on just for a bit and imagine all of that attention being on you. And welcome it in.

Big changes happen when you aren’t hiding anymore ;-).

If you are feeling super inspired to be bolder but you don’t know where to start, check out my new guide, 3 Beauty Rituals to Phenomenal Self Care. Confidence is a big deal and it can start with something simple. Get access to the guide here!

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