Thursday, May 27, 2010


Life is all about choices. Some may argue that things simply happen, or may play victim to life’s circumstances, but I believe that where we stand in life is a result of choices we make. Of course, forces beyond our control throw rocks at us from time to time, but our attitude and our effort to rise above any occasion sets the tone for the day. And yes, we do have control over attitude and effort.

It begins with our first thought each morning. A friend used to rise each morning, groan, and say, “Aw… (insert your favorite expletive here)”. Rather than experience excitement at a new day, he chose to focus on “all the (again, insert your favorite expletive here) I have to do,” with no effort to acknowledge his blessings. We didn’t stay friends for very long - too much negativity for me.

Call me shallow, but I truly believe that our image choices affect our attitude. It’s a fact: when one looks his best, he tends to feel his best, and that will ultimately lead him to do his best. That’s why I find it so surprising how little effort many folks put into their appearance these days. The schlumpy sweatpants and flip-flops worn to practically any public place have caused a schlumpy mindset in our society, I think. I’m tired of schlumpy – aren’t you? (Although I like to say “schlumpy” – it’s a fun little word that rolls off the tongue)

Day-to-day living can certainly lend itself to a drop in positivity. That’s why we must make the effort to look for the good things and to get out of a routine. We must work, that’s true, but must we eat lunch at our desks every day? Might we wander out and grab a bite at a local café with a friend? Could we forgo the hours upon hours of TV each night to visit with friends, go to a museum, or simply stroll through the neighborhood?

Finally, at the end of the day, we must count our blessings, offer thanks for all that we have, and acknowledge that those rocks that may have been thrown at us are intended to teach us lessons.

It’s a choice to enjoy life and to do those things that make you happy. It’s a choice to strive for a positive attitude each day and to treat yourself – and others –well. Will you make the effort or won’t you? The choice is yours.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Was It Something I Said?

Yours truly has recently been called out regarding a couple of articles I’ve written, so I thought it wise to come clean about a few things.

First of all, I’m not writing about you. I take little bits and pieces of things I witness, things that I feel should be addressed, and attempt to shed a little light on the matter. I’m not judging anyone, nor am I attempting some sort of underhanded jab at anyone. That’s not my style, and anyone who truly knows me understands that.

Second, it’s fine and dandy to question anything I’ve written. As a writer, I expect it. Heck, I encourage it. Let’s generate some sort of dialogue and get a ‘big picture’ movement going. With article-writing and blogging, we tend to write in generalities – the genre simply won’t allow us to dive in too deeply and cover every aspect of every situation. I’ve got my views; you’ve got yours, so let’s chat!

I’ve never claimed to be perfect, and anyone who’s spent a good five minutes with me can certainly attest that I am not.

So rather than musing about it all, I’ll just make a list and let you know where I stand on certain things – things that I’ve actually been questioned about lately:

-We’re all here for a reason, so why not make it a good one? I like to help people, I really do, and I know that within us all dwells the power to create meaningful, magnificent lives. If I can help you tap into that power with any little musing I might publish, then I’m a happy girl, for sure! Any guilt or resentment you may feel upon reading any of my little scribblings might be an indication that something isn’t right in your world. I’d be more than happy to help you figure it out, because I want you to live joyfully and peacefully. I sincerely mean it.

- For me, personally, television is a big waste of time. What little free time I do have is spent outdoors – by the pool, on the beach…just seek out some water, and you’re sure to find me there. Don’t ask me if I’ve caught (insert your favorite program here) because I haven’t. I’m a fan of Absolutely Fabulous; I own the DVD collection and watch it probably far more than I should, Sweetie-Darling. Project Runway is a hit with me, and occasionally I’ll catch The Office and 30 Rock. You have your shows, I have mine, and that's that, as far as I’m concerned.

- As a woman I find Sex and the City truly offensive. I can’t say why, specifically – I just do. Please stop asking me if I’ll go see it with you. If it entertains you, that’s great – that's what it's supposed to do. It leaves me sad and a bit frightened…but that’s just me. I, evidently, have overlooked that certain something that makes it so popular. (And yes, I did watch a few episodes, and am baffled that it became not one, but two smash movies - go figure!)

-Generally speaking, I have no problem with plastic surgery. I’ve no problem with Botox. I’ve an issue, however, with overall transformations on the Heidi Montag scale. I’ve often found, too, that sometimes those little nips, tucks, and augmentations never truly satisfy a girl. Confidence, self-esteem, and happiness must come from within.

-I do not have a problem with people who are overweight. I’ve been there myself, and I know how challenging it can be to lose it. I am, however, concerned by those who merely complain about being overweight rather than actually doing something about it.

-I’ll never understand the popularity of crocs, nor do I get why so many people choose to wear track suits during air travel.

-I don’t get your garden gnome, and I get it that you may not understand my framed photo of Rick Springfield that sits on my desk.

You see, we all have our ‘things’ – our likes, our dislikes, our preferences, and such. I’m really not trying to push any sort of ideal off on you. I merely want to inform, perhaps enlighten, and maybe even entertain through my writing.

And that, my friends, is me in a nutshell: a silly girl who believes that life should be a worthy and fun adventure, a gal who believes in the power of fabulous shoes, a chick who enjoys a good laugh at the absurdity of pretty much any given situation, and someone who truly never intends to offend anyone.

I’m me…you’re you…and it’s all good, as far as I’m concerned.

Beth Newman
Image Consultant/Life Coach
Newman Image
Look, feel, and LIVE your absolute best!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Hocus Focus

I believe in magic. Not the kind you find at kids’ birthday parties or lavish Las Vegas shows, though; I believe in the kind of magic that surrounds us each day. I believe, too, that we have the power to tap into our own Harry Houdini and create truly magical experiences for ourselves.

But before we start waving our wands willy-nilly, we must be certain of one thing: our intentions.

In order conjure up something fantastic, we must first determine what that fantastic something is. One of the main reasons people don’t get what they want out of life is because they simply don’t know what they want. Perhaps they’re living the dreams others have placed before them. Perhaps they’ve been conditioned to believe that focusing on a particular dream is selfish. It takes a lot of soul-searching, prayer, and meditation to overcome these limitations, but trust me when I tell you that it’s well worth the time and effort.

I think, too, that mind-clutter keeps us from living magically. With all the bad news, bad TV shows, bad music, and bad movies floating around out there, we tend to mire ourselves down into a swamp of negativity. All the violence, deviance, and selfishness we read about, listen to, and watch eventually enters the subconscious mind. Years ago, I learned the concept of ‘Garbage In – Garbage Out’ and although I didn’t apply it at the time, I now know for a fact that it is true. We can’t live magically while wallowing in a dumpster.

I encourage you today to take a little time to think about what it is you truly want out of life. Overcome any fears or limitations you may have. Surround yourself with positive energy. Then prepare yourself for a wonderfully magical ride!

Beth Newman
Image Consultant/Life Coach
Newman Image
Look, feel, and LIVE your absolute best!

Contact me for details about my online course, Miracles, Magic, and Everyday Grace!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Beth's Seal of Approval

Okay, I realize I cover a great deal in the Product Watch section of Elegant (the little ‘zine dedicated to fabulous living, located at each month, but so many amazing things have been stirring within my head and filling my closet that I simply have no choice but to share them with you!

New and Fabulous on the Wardrobe Front!
The slim-cut pant is so in vogue right now, and I love it! The best trouser, hands-down, that I’ve recently discovered comes to us from the new Ecru line. Fast becoming an important presence in the marketplace and in the closets of stylish women everywhere, Ecru has quickly established itself and developed a following among fashion-aware women (I own three pair already!) They’re a double-stretch cotton/poly/spandex blend and run true to size. They do not bag…they do not sag. Comfortably chic and oh-so-cool, you’ll find them in quality boutiques, such as JoAnn’s in Sugar Land and Houston.

Ecru 'Simone' Pant

Can you believe the vest has made such a smashing comeback? I’m thrilled, and it brings me great joy to tell you that New York designer Bob Tapp is back – on a limited basis – with his fantastic creations! These little works of art, available only at JoAnn’s, are the perfect addition for anyone seeking a little something outside of the box, wardrobe-wise. I proudly own two Tapp Vests, and receive loads of compliments each time I wear them. Enough said, I think!

Tapp Asian Derby Vest

(Side note: Should you not be in the Houston area, email me and I’ll gladly send you more detailed information and pictures regarding Ecru, Tapp, or any of the fantastic lines carried by JoAnn’s (Alberto Makali, Zanilla, Boho Chic, AZI, etc.) JoAnn’s ships all over the country, so give me a shout and I’ll gladly set you up!)

The Eyes Have It!
The must-have accessory of the moment? Eyelashes, my friends! I’m out and proud about my Nova Lash eyelash extensions! I don’t wear mascara anymore, and the upkeep is minimal. Tish Wolter is the certified go-to gal in Houston. Shoot me an email and I’ll provide you with Tish’s contact information.

Bronze Beauty!

I always take heat this time of year (no pun intended) regarding a suntan. A healthy glow, I feel, is a must right now, but should you not have time to ‘get your tan on’ the old-school way, I encourage Sugar Land residents to pay a visit to my friends at Sunny Beach Tans (16525 Lexington in Sugar Land). Under new ownership, you’ll find state-of-the-art equipment, including the VersaSpa Skin Care System ( Sunny Beach Tans is super-clean, super friendly, and has an incredibly knowledgeable staff. Be sure to tell them Beth sent you!

I feel so fortunate that part of my job includes trying out and trying on the latest. I love sharing this information with you, and always love hearing about the clothing, products, and places that work for you!

Monday, May 10, 2010

No Mystery

Gwyneth Paltrow graces the cover of this month’s Harper’s Bazaar.

I open it, and discover Julia Robert’s toothy grin as she represents Lancome.
A few pages over, Amanda Seyfried endorses a Movado watch. Turning the page, I find Scarlet Johansson wearing the new Roses Collection from Dolce and Gabbana. Next up, it’s Audrey Tatou for Chanel. Turn another page, and there’s Julianne Moore staring at me winsomely through a pair of Bvlgari sunglasses. She’s followed by Ellen DeGeneres, who’s representing Cover Girl. There’s Drew Barrymore, also making a show for Cover Girl. I continue, and discover Madonna kissing some young man for Dolce and Gabbana. Just when I think I’ve trudged through every celebrity endorsing just about every product, I find Halle Berry for Revlon.

I miss models.

As an out-and-proud magazine junkie for the last twenty-five years, I must be completely honest and tell you that I’m bored with celebrity endorsements. I prefer some mysterious young woman looking lifelessly at me from the pages as she tempts me with the latest-this-or-latest-that.

As a kid, I always loved looking at the models almost as much as I loved looking at the clothes and dreaming about the products I hoped to use one day. Christy Brinkley just seemed super nice, Cheryl Tiegs, I convinced myself, was super-cool, Janice Dickinson epitomized super-exotic, and Beverly Johnson seemed super-super in every way. They were beautiful and mysterious, and that’s something we’re in short supply of these days: mystique.

I suppose the mystery started to unravel with Brooke Shields’ proclamation that nothing came between her and her Calvin Klein’s. The early 90’s brought us the age of the super-model. Cindy Crawford, Linda Evangelist, and Naomi Campbell lived like rock stars, and we saw much of it thanks to increased publicity surrounding them and famous folk in general. It wasn’t enough for the super-models, or for us, I suppose. Cindy made a pretty forgetable movie, then married and divorced Richard Gere. Linda outraged many when she claimed she wouldn’t get out of bed for less than $10,000 a day. And Naomi….well, you know the story.

We know too much about other people these days. Thanks to the Internet, I know far more than I ever wanted to know about the famous, the infamous, and the regular folks. Mystique, it appears, is a thing of the past, and that makes me a little sad. Too much information has caused me to become a bit jaded, I fear, and the use of celebrities to peddle everything from perfume to pork rinds doesn’t help. I won’t buy Lancôme because I’ve never understood the hoopla surrounding Julia Roberts. Movado missed the mark with me – I’ve no idea who Amanda Seyfried is. I don’t think lipstick when I see Halle Berry; I think, didn’t she just split from her baby daddy?

And if magazines in general continue to bombast me with covers of Gwyneth or Sarah Jessica, I will seriously consider cancelling my subscriptions. I want girls who know how to model beautiful clothes. I want girls whom I know nothing about, thus allowing me an unbiased take on what it is they’re trying to sell. I want a little mystery in my magazines and in ‘real life’ – I’d love to be able to wonder what someone is up to, rather than reading about it, in great detail, on social networking sites. Instead of talking about our lives, let’s turn off the computer, turn off ‘reality’ TV, and go out there a live them. Mystique is such an attractive trait, I think, and I’d love to see more of it. Wouldn’t you?

Beth Newman
Image consultant/Life coach
Newman Image
Look, feel, and LIVE your absolute best!
online consultations available!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Commitment to Excellence

You are today where your thoughts have brought you; you will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you – James Allen

It’s a simple idea, really – one of committing ourselves to only the best life has to offer.

Yet so many of us settle for mediocrity.

The world holds true abundance and joy for us all, if we allow it to do so. We start by offering and feeling thankful what we have, and we don’t focus on those things we don’t. We then dedicate ourselves to excellence in all areas of our lives. We expect it, and we don’t settle for the mundane anymore.

Commitment to greatness, rather than goodness, is one of the fastest ways I know in which to reap the rewards of life. Use the good napkins rather than paper towels during dinner. Stop wasting time in front of the television when you could spend that time better learning something new, talking with a friend, or simply sitting and reflecting on the day. Speak kindly, and show respect toward others as well as toward yourself. Readily forgive others when they’ve hurt you, and readily forgive yourself for any shortcomings.

Our society in general seems to be content with merely ‘getting by’. I’m not content with that, and it is my sincerest wish that you aren’t, either.

Life is too short, my friends. Why not take the high road in all situations? Seek happiness, offer comfort, and make the conscious decision daily to strive for excellence in all that you do and say. Expect excellence, and you’ll get it!

Beth Newman
Image Consultant/Life Coach
Newman Image
Look, feel, and LIVE your absolute best!
online consultations available!

Monday, May 3, 2010

May's Good Buys

Let’s see…

Sunglasses? Check!
Denims? Check!
Spring and summer shoes? Check!
Dresses? Check!
Tanks and tees? Uh….won’t mine from last year work?

The answer, my friend, is ‘no!’ As we enter the month of May – the last official month of spring – we must insure that we’ve our warm-weather wardrobe intact, and that includes the little, lightweight things.

We must purge our tank and tee collection right now. Sure, those white t-shirts purchased a year ago might look okay, but hold one up to a shiny, bright new one and you’ll see the difference. Some tees lose their shape after a few spins in the washing machine. Trust me, you’re better off saying ‘sayonara’ to them all and welcoming in a new batch.

Tees and tanks reign supreme as the most versatile items in our wardrobe and the most affordable. (Personally, I go with Hanes Her Way – the three pack – that I can easily pick up at my neighborhood Target for around $10). We can wear these little miracles just about everywhere and with everything: Pair one with a jacket and skirt for the office; get rid of the skirt and jacket and put on a pair of jeans or lightweight trousers – viola – you’ve got your weekend look together!

Layering t-shirts and tank tops is also a really good styling trick and a great way to get different looks. Open yourself up to colors you normally wouldn’t choose: Layering two colors that pick up the print in a skirt make for a visually interesting look.

Do consider your bras when shopping for tanks and tees. Calvin Klein’s T-shirt bra still reigns supreme, in my humble opinion. The smooth texture and extraordinary fit are the only way to go underneath your t-shirts.

Gals of a certain shape will benefit from a Lycra cami with a built-in bra and adjustable straps. Wear it under anything, and notice the support and smoothness you’ll get in return. Word or caution: Lycra fits snugly, so it won’t be as cool on those sweltering summer days.

The temperature is rising, so stay cool, my friends – literally and figuratively!

Beth Newman
Image Consultant/Life Coach
Newman Image
Look, feel, and LIVE your absolute best!
online consultations available!