Skin Deep and Heart Open
by Elizabeth Janowski
It is my belief that there is a strong interplay between inner and outer beauty.
At Sonata, while our focus is on the myriad of things you can do to feel your best on the outside, we are also profoundly interested in what can make you feel confident and radiant from the inside out.
In my own life, I have been privileged enough to experience the feedback loop between our “skin deep” treatments and my own journey to self-acceptance. I want to live my life from a place of open-heartedness, with a focus on spreading love and kindness. Sonata is the perfect place for me to create a physical manifestation of my dream of creating a place where people feel loved, honored and respected. I have spent the last few years bettering myself as a leader, a mother, a friend, and a woman – with time spent in meditation, with spiritual teachers, reading, and exploring. And I can genuinely say, that at 39 years old, I have never experienced more self-acceptance. It is a wonderful feeling, and one that I wish for everyone I encounter.
While the journey towards greater self-love involves much time exploring your own inner world, I strongly believe that there is a definite connection between you own inner self-love and your outer self-reflection.
And I am not alone. In fact, there have long been studies showing that people who receive regular neuro-toxin treatments (Botox®, Dysport®, Xeomin), also have marked improvements in mood andself-perception (source). Neuro-toxins, when used for wrinkles in the upper face, relaxthe muscles that can cause deep frowning expressions. Therefore, you can no longer scowl as deeply. Seeing your own face in a more pleasant expression cues your brain to record your mood as placid or happy. It’s sort of a fake-it-til-you-make it phenomenon, in which seeing yourself physically reflect more “positive” expressions makes you feel more positive.
Taking this idea a step further, I’ve long thought that when you are having a sad, exhausted, or drained day, dressing a little bit nicer or wearing a touch of make-up can help lift your spirits. It is the idea of leading with the way you “want” to feel rather than how you might actually feel. This isn’t to say you should pretend to feel some way that you do not. Authentic expression of yourself is critical to deepening your self-awareness. Rather, reflecting back a “positive” impression of yourself can help lead you towards a more confident and radiant interior self-perception.
I will use an example from my own life. I have a friend who is a gifted photographer. She and I have worked together on a couple of family photo shoots. She also encouraged me to do a shoot just for me and just of me. We walked around a local lake at sunset. It was a stormy and chilly evening and it started to hail. I was tired from an early-rising baby (up at 4:30 am). I had a pimple. I hadn’t been working out as regularly as usual. I was cold and getting rained on. I wasn’t feeling sparkly and magical. But, you know what, the photos turned out beautifully. Julie, the photographer, was able to reflect back to me something I didn’t always see in my busy, rushing around life. I saw someone youthful, confident, and graceful. And seeing the photos gave me a sense of increased confidence in the best way. I felt like, “hey, that lady in those photos can take on the world in a beautiful way”.
It was incredibly empowering.
In our business, I am lucky enough to be our regular “guinea pig”. I try almost everything we offer first, so we can perfect our techniques, and so I can accurately describe the experience to our clients. I’ve had everything from Dysport® to liposuction and everything in between. And, in the last 6 years of being a part of the Sonata family, I’ve seen myself morph from an awkward girl into a confident woman. Certainly, getting Dysport®, fillers, peels, and body treatments wasn’t the only part of this transformation, but it absolutely helped. Catching my face in a mirror, even when sleep deprived with two little babies, or experiencing strange post-partum body issues, and liking how I look creates this amazing positive feedback loop for me. I like the way I look and it gives me the confidence I need to work tirelessly towards my mission.
My dream of creating a space of loving kindness at Sonata becomes more real each day, as we help more and more people, and receive the feedback, that yes, we did make a small (or big) difference in their lives. And I am hoping to share my passion in an even bigger way now. I want to inspire you to reclaim your face, then your body, and then the world. And with every little cosmetic treatment, hopefully we can push away some self-doubt, and help you create your own positive feedback loop – where by loving yourself, you have more love to share with the world and the people that you care about in it.
Self-love and self-acceptance certainly comes from within, but there is a definite connection with your own outer perception. Let us help you with that outer piece so it doesn’t get in the way of being the truly radiant person you are meant to be.