Beyond Beautiful

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Have you ever found a TV show, restaurant, bargain or hair stylist you loved so much that you felt compelled to share your discovery with the world? Like you must shout it from the rooftops so everyone can know about the little gem you discovered? That’s how I felt after watching The Letdown, Catastrophe, Free Solo and Always Be My Maybe. And it’s how I feel today about a book I just finished. A book that I’m going to read every year. A book that has been called a ’self-confidence bible’. A book that is fascinating, easy to read, and empowering. 

The book is Beyond Beautiful

Beyond Beautiful is “A practical guide to being happy, confident and you in a looks-obsessed world.” It touches on topics ranging from food & fitness to body hair, fashion/style, social media and beauty routines. If you’re worried that the book is going to tell you makeup is bad or you shouldn’t spend your money on the latest fashion accessory, don’t worry. The beauty of this book is it helps you identify what you enjoy or want to do vs. what you feel compelled/bound to do for others/society. It helps you identify what activities are “fear driven” or “pleasure driven.” And it helps to separate your value & worth from your looks. 

The beauty of this book is it helps you identify what you enjoy or want to do vs. what you feel compelled/bound to do for others/society. It helps you identify what activities are “fear driven” or “pleasure driven.”

Fascinating

I’m not going to lie, it usually takes me awhile to get through “self help” books because at the end of the day when I’m ready to read for 15 minutes in bed, I want to be taken away to another world. Not analyze my own. But Beyond Beautiful is fascinating. Author Anuschka Rees shows how beauty standards have changed throughout history and how “problems” today weren’t even problems in the past … until a company made a product, told you via marketing there was a problem with your body, and offered their product as the solution. She “unpacks the problem” and looks at what influences body image: the media, other people in your life, and self perception. Having the knowledge of how we as a society and individually got to where we are today is important and empowering for change.   

Down-to-Earth

With a sensitive/complex topic like body image, I don’t want to be preached at (Can I get an Amen?). You’ll get the opposite with this book. Rees is approachable and real. She imparts tons of research and wisdom, but she isn’t a know-it-all. She’s experienced what we’ve all experienced and shares bits of her own vulnerability throughout the book. Her writing helped me feel more connected to other women. 

Easy-to-Read and Empowering

You’ll be asking yourself lots of questions as you read this book, but one question you won’t ask is “Now what?” That’s because Rees gives you exercises and tools to work through the knowledge you’re gaining as you read and the experiences you encounter in your everyday life. The book contains:

  • Reflection questions that help excavate thoughts and feelings
  • Other women’s survey responses to questions like, “How has your upbringing influenced the way you feel about your body today?” and “How do female grooming standards affect you?” 
  • A “Beyond Beautiful Toolbox” with actionable steps to deal with “your judgy inner voice,” respond to a ‘bad’ Instagram photo of yourself, and more.
Inside of book
A glimpse at one of the Beyond Beautiful toolboxes.

I love Beyond Beautiful SO much that I wish I could be like Oprah and buy/give away thousands of copies. I may not be able to give away thousands but I’m going to personally buy and give away 10 copies. YOU get a copy! And YOU get a copy! And YOU get a copy! …

… Comment on this post and tag a friend you think would like this book. If your name is randomly selected from blog post and Instagram entries, you AND your friend will receive a copy.

XOXO,

Amy

3 comments

  1. Yes!!! This does sound so interesting! Sometimes I wish I could go full hippie on some of this stuff… but not there yet! Would love to dive in more!!

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    1. What’s so great about this book is nothing is bad/evil per se. It’s more of critical thinking around things like “do i leave the house with a full face of makeup because I enjoy putting on makeup and how it makes me feel or because if someone sees me without makeup I’m going to be horrified and they’ll judge me.” Are our activities pleasure or fear driven? So, you go hippie girl if that’s what YOU want to do 🙂 And if you don’t, no shame!

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