As you know by now, Cathy and I do not get into politics on FabulousOver60. We think there are places for that from the local diner to the internet; or from your own Facebook page to zillions of obscure or heavily-trafficked sites. I bet if you have read our blog for a while you can guess by now that Cathy leans center right, and I lean center all the way to the left, but it doesn’t matter. “Fabulous”, as we describe it, is not political – so welcome all. Even if you don’t care about this election, hate everyone running, or planning to vote for Gary Johnson or Jill Stein.
Here are the truths barring repeating and the implication for us fabulous women:
1. People don’t change without TONS of effort and work. Even with extensive work, practice, and a sincere effort to change, it is extremely challenging.
If you missed the book The Power of Habit – it is time to read it. If you have read it, just do a quick re-read.
IMPLICATION: Give yourself a break that you haven’t lost that 10 lbs., quit drinking, gone back to more frequent religious services or trying to keep your voice down (one of my continuing but often failed improvement strategies).
2. Sometimes you can’t help yourself – somebody just pushes your buttons.
IMPLICATION: Do you even know your buttons? Any fabulous woman should know them cold. And, before any interactions with potential “button pushers” remind yourself not only not to respond, but plan ahead to avoid tension. Example: Dinner with your cousin John, the sincere but over the edge supporter of the natural look (he’s a mess and he loves that his wife has gone gray)?? Wear something you consider “the most boring thing in your closet” and do not color your roots.
3. Lying is natural. But consider the topic.
*We are told roughly around 200 lies per day. *On average, we lie 3 times per every 10 mins of conversation, 60% have a hard time without lying at least once. Most lies are harmless white lies like “nice haircut” or “yeah, all is good!”
IMPLICATION: It is OK to do what I did: to tell my mother, who was suffering from dementia in 1998, that my wedding was in a Catholic Church and Bill had gone to Rome to talk to the Pope and had gotten an annulment. It is not OK to say tell people stray gossip that is hurtful and vicious. It is OK to say, for example, “you look awesome”. It is not OK to say your cancer is ‘“all in your head” and you need to buy supplements from me’. There are lies and then there are lies. Use that fabulous head of yours to comply with “telling the truth” that matters.
4. Manage your facial expressions and your gaze.
IMPLICATION: Rolling your eyes as your sister tells you she has so many men calling her she doesn’t know who to choose to take her to the most expensive restaurant in town is fine. But it is terrible to roll your eyes when your grown daughter, niece or dear friend is sharing that she is considering getting a divorce. Look people in the eye with compassion, keep yourself composed and skip the “schoolmarm” or “queen bee I am above it all look” when tension is flying.
5. Finally, be smart. Drop topics you don’t want to get into and rise above the nonsense.
IMPLICATION: Being smart in all senses of that word is the essence of being fabulous – along with being kind and “staying on your own yoga mat”. Avoid or drop subjects of deep division with those you love and those you need to pretend you love. Stand for peace – with or without a sign. Be the model for sophisticated ease and grace.
If you are like us, you are counting the days till November 8th and not because you are worried you will miss the minute by minute polling. But not using this unique opportunity in this contentious election cycle not to brush up on being fabulous would be a big mistake. Thank God no one will be discussing that mistake in a round table of experts later this week, or weeks to come. Oh, but do vote.
Patty Gill Webber