We can all see the beauty in others. We can all be wowed by the achievements of others. We can all admire the kindness of others. We can all look for the positives in others.
But for some reason… most women just cannot see it in themselves. We are hard on ourselves. We criticise our imperfections. We put ourselves down for not being good enough. We doubt ourselves. And in doing this, we stand in the way of our own happiness and success!
So many of us have internalised the idea that it’s always better to give than to receive. I think a lot of women still feel it’s more natural to nurture others than to put ourselves up for nurturing and advancement, even if it’s exactly what we need. I think it’s also our environments that have conditioned us to generally be sweet, nice, passive: we want to be liked and we don’t want confrontation or to ruffle feathers or stand out.
We may see our own success as due to luck and the many people who have helped us, more so than taking credit for our achievements. In contrast, so many men know how to own it.
We need to empower women to believe that they can be anyone they want to be and achieve anything they dream of. We need to empower women to know that it’s ok to want to be assertive, speak your truth and ask for more. This has to start now so that it becomes a norm for the next generation, because our daughters and their daughters deserve it.
It is all about the right mindset and making that choice. What we choose to believe, we become.
My job as a plastic surgeon is not just to physically change an aspect of someone’s body. That is the science. To make a difference to someone’s life, requires helping them to see a more beautiful image of themselves and helping to enable them to believe that they are able to be whoever they wish to be. That is about self belief, self confidence and self worth. To me that is the true art of plastic surgery. And my next step? To change the misconception that plastic surgery is only about vanity and removing the stigma and shame that dogs a beautiful thing that can help make a difference to so many people.
If we all believed in ourselves, we’d lead much happier lives because we wouldn’t be doubting ourselves and our worth. Happier people who know and own their gifts can go on to do so much more collectively. Happy and healthy societies are prosperous and rich in so many ways.
We followed on the weekend with an event to commemorate International Women’s Day called “Empower”, which was open to the public. Many of the women from Friday’s photoshoot took to the runway at this by women, for women celebration, wearing couture fashion from Steph Audino. They were there to boldly make a statement, that any woman can be a supermodel. It doesn’t require a specific physique but more importantly confidence and sass. All 20 women also had inspiring stories to share. From surviving domestic violence, to overcoming bullying, to the triumph over long battles with obesity and poor self image and poor health, these women had done it. And at Empower, they all did the one thing they’d previously thought that could not – get dressed up in a bespoke gown, walk head held high, being proud ambassadors of their journey in front of a crowd of 250 people all chanting support.
The day continued with empowering messages from keynote speakers Dr Anne Aly, Dr Nikki Stamp, Steph Audino, Courtney Wilder and Dr Anh – emphasising that there are no shortcuts to success, but we all have the ability to uncover the best in ourselves. All it takes is to believe in yourself, know your self worth, invest in your self care, have a grateful heart and make a difference.
Attendees connected, expressed their thoughts on a messaging wall, participated in a catwalk of their own, were entertained by Joan and the Giants and DJ Kayty Banks and indulged in an elaborate grazing table and candy station. It was a truly transformative event for so many.
Special thanks goes out not just to our models, but also to Brooke Timms our MC, Wild Rose Hair and Cult Cosmetica for doing the hair and makeup for the models, the photographers (ClixbyMia) videographer Natalie Hind and Connie Audino for styling the models and Vu Tran for putting the event together. Dr Anh (Medispa, skincare and lashboss) sponsored the event supported by our fantastic co-organisers Steph Audino and Courtney of Seeking Wilder.