Merry Christmas, Everyone!

Hello strangers!

It’s been a while, hasn’t it?! I’ve been so busy with life in the real world that I’ve been struggling to keep my poor little blog updated. But here I am two days before Christmas holed up in my boyfriend’s bedroom and making sure that I have some time to up date you all as we come to the end of another roller coaster of a year!

2013 has definitely been a roller coaster, but thankfully with more ups than downs. This is the first year where I have felt that I’ve definitely figured out who I am and where I want to go in life, and that is honestly the best feeling in the world. I know who I am and for once I feel like I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be in life. I’ve never had that before, I’ve never felt so settled and comfortable in my own skin, and I guess you could say that is down to a few factors. Let’s see what those factors are, shall we?

1. Confidence – This year I made a resolution to myself that I was going to try and be more confident in my appearance and start wearing clothes that I would normally lust after but never actually purchase. I’ve always hidden behind the fact that I’m not really a girly girl in order to get away with not wearing pretty dresses or short skirts, but this year I promised myself that I was going to start wearing whatever the hell I liked, and if people had an issue with that then that was there problem. It’s been a year of bright colours, short skirts, dresses and no shame. It has been such a liberating feeling to go out wearing clothes that I like and not feel bad for wearing them. Sure, now and then I’ll get a comment or a stare, but I don’t care about those anymore. They would have destroyed me a while ago, but now I know that it’s their issue; not mine. I’m comfortable in my skin, I’m happy in my life and what I wear does not define me as a person.

2. People – Being surrounded by loving and supportive people has helped greatly in my journey to self acceptance. I’ve got great friends, a wonderful close family who support me no matter what, a fantastic college class full of a mixture of the most talented and odd people that I’ve ever met – they’ve definitely got me through the first term of college, but more on that later!- and of course, last but not least, I have the love of a good man to get me through even my darkest moments. He makes everything seem safe and that is a wonderful feeling. He’s been in my life for six months now, but it feels like he’s always been there. We’re just two matching pieces of a puzzle, and it feels absolutely lovely to share that bond with someone.

3. Belief – As you all know, I’m not the religious type. But that does not mean that I don’t have a belief system, it simply means that I believe in something a little different from the majority of today’s society. I believe in people, and I think that if more people did then the world would be a much nicer place. I believe that no matter how anxious I feel about something, it will no be the end of the world. I believe that every little thing that happens in our lives happens for a reason. I believe that what is for us will not pass us by, and I believe that it is our duty to grab those things with both hands and make the moments perfect instead of waiting for the perfect moments.

So there, the three things that have made this year my most self-confident year yet. I’m so content with life right now that there are only a few things that could knock me off of this cloud; but I’m not going to discuss them in this post. This post is a yearly roundup and I’m hoping to leave it on a positive note!

So, top ten things that happened this year?

  •  Deciding that life isn’t about what other people think
  • Interviewing one of my idols, Rae Earl
  • Being given my own column in the Konect Directory
  • Landing a job as a photography intern
  • Starting college and learning more and more about photography
  • Meeting Andrew and finding the wonderful love that we share
  • Coffee mornings for DLYG
  • Hitting 5,000 followers on the Don’t Lose Your Grip twitter account!
  • Reconnecting with my oldest niece, Chloe
  • Being proud of the person that I am today

It may not be the longest list in the world, but if I were to go through every great thing that happened this year then I would be here all day.

Over the years I’ve learned that life isn’t about physical things, but in the moments that surround you every day. This year has been full of wonderful moments that I will never forget, and the majority of those would not have happened had it not been for the people that are in my life. The people who are by my side no matter what.

As we come close to the end of the year, my head is full of ideas and hope for 2014. There are a lot of people out there who can’t wait for this year to be over, but to be honest I’m sitting here daring next year to try and be better than this year, and I’m sure it will be.

I want to wish all of you a magical Christmas and wonderful new year when it comes. Keep your eyes peeled for a more in depth update in the new year that will include a run-down of our hopes for Don’t Lose Your Grip and Chrisselle.com in 2014. Things are getting exciting, and I’m so glad that I get to share this journey with you all.

Much love,

Chrisselle xox

The Power of Words

Want to know the one thing that I’ve noticed these past few weeks, other than the fabulous weather that the UK has been having? Just how angry it makes me that larger people feel the need to cover up an uncomfortable amount during the heatwave in fear of being taunted or offending someone for what they are wearing.

I recently seen a girl wearing jogging bottoms, two t-shirts and a hoody in 28C heat, she looked uncomfortably warm and exhausted from the heat. There is no logic in wearing so many layers in a heat like that other than being too scared to show your body – I’ve been there, and some days I’m still there.

I remember dreading summer because I knew that I was going to be hot and sweaty and want to be covered up to avoid stares and comments being made about how I ‘shouldn’t’ wear certain things just because they came in my size.

The question is who gives society the right to dictate what people should and shouldn’t wear? The answer is the individual themselves. If you don’t let people get to you with their stares and comments, then there is no power in their words. You are the only person who can decide if what someone says is going to affect you, and more importantly how it will affect you. For example, if someone said to me that I ‘look like that girl from My Mad Fat Diary’ then I would be flattered, because Sharon Rooney is gorgeous, but some people may see that as an insult purely because of the word ‘fat’. Now, let’s just take a look at the word fat.

Fat.

/fat/

Noun: a natural oily or greasy substance occurring in animal bodies, esp. when deposited as a layer under the skin or around certain organs.

Adjective: (of a person or animal) Having a large amount of excess flesh.

So, looking at the official definition of the word, there isn’t really anything insulting about it, is there? I mean yes, I do have excess flesh, but the majority of that is from losing weight – and I could get that removed, but the truth is I value my life more than my body and I would much rather live a life with some extra flesh than increase my chance of death my voluntarily putting myself through a dangerous procedure.

Now, if we looked at the Urban Dictionary definition of ’fat’ then that would be a different story, but the thing is; there is no power in words unless you put that power there. If you were to read through the dictionary, you would simply see words with no power other than the power to create sentences and stories with them, so why can’t we see words like that all of the time?

Just because a word can have venom behind it, does not make it important. Live life the way YOU want to, and don’t pay attention to those people who feel the need to pass their own insecurities onto you!

I wore a dress without tights this week. Guess what? The world did not end! I then wore shorts, and I didn’t cause the zombie apocalypse! And more importantly, I enjoyed the heat instead of suffering in it.

All I’m saying is that you should wear what you are comfortable in, and what you like. Not what society says is socially acceptable for you to wear. Love that new dress? Wear it! Don’t leave it stored away for the moths to enjoy.

I know from personal experience that this can be hard, and it can be hard to find clothes that you feel comfortable in and enjoy from a fashion point of view, but you are not alone in the big beautiful world and you can find inspiration and tips from some fabulous people out there.

Tess Munster (@TessMunster) is a beautiful lady who is encouraging people on (and off of) Instagram to #effyourbeautystandards and accept yourself for who you are. Following this lady has given me the confidence to say #effyourbeautystandards and enjoy the clothes that I would have previously hidden away from.

Honor Curves (@HonorCurves) is another of my body acceptance idols. You can find her and her #honormycurves movement on Instagram and on Twitter. She’s out there making sure that women of all shapes and sizes remember to honour their bodies instead of judging them. We only get one body, and there is no point in going through life hating the shell you are in. Honor is a great inspiration for those looking for tips on how to accept your body.

There is also a HUGE network of plus-size beauty bloggers out there for you to find inspiration from. Don’t give up, and remember to stay fatulous!

Thanks for reading,
Chrisselle xo