Refining the Beauty Illusion.
The Art of BEING Kim.
It’s Kim story time people….!
I KNOW that each of us has a unique tale to tell, or many for that matter and I seem to have an abundance of interesting ones! Story sharing is a great way to help others who may be struggling with a similar experience… any chance to lighten someone else’s load is worth doing! AND… I am in a place in my life where I am practicing refining my writing skills! You see I am very much a ‘picture type’ person and writing does not come easily to me…. SO, it is with great pleasure that I am stretching THAT muscle and I VERY much appreciate the time you are taking to sit back and enjoy this ‘Kim Adventure’!
I have had the absolute privilege of sharing this particular story with a number of groups over the past few years and each time that I do, I am deeply moved by how much it touches so many, all in its own unique way. Most recently, when David and I hosted our Fully Live Workshop, the overwhelming emotional response of gratitude was so palpable that I knew it was time to share this part of my life with the ‘wider YOU’, with the intention of giving you a different perspective of ‘The Pretty Girl’!
This piece of writing is all about harmful assumptions, comparisons, and self-depreciation!
A toxic and harmful practice people that only serves to destroy…. BEWARE!
Many people decide SO many false scenarios about a person and their life after only brief encounters with them or with no actual encounters at all …. just noticing them from afar. For example, if a woman is beautiful many decide that she must have had a charmed life and always been attractive, then they minimise themselves in the process, wanting ‘THAT woman’s life’. This is such a common occurrence and usually women are the guiltiest of this phenomenon. In my experience, most people look at me and think any or all of the following scenarios in some version, I know this because I have been told…. MANY times!
Kim Assumptions 101! “She is so beautiful and confident… it would be lovely to be THAT way…. she has a perfect life…. she must be a yoga instructor… she looks like she was a cheer leader at school and looks like one of the popular girls who got all the guys… her life just looks amazing; she looks so happy and filled with joy”.
However, THOSE looking in did not see what the reality of my life really was….
You see, no one actually stops for a minute and ask themselves this question; “DO I REALLY want their life”? because to be ‘her’ you have to take ALL the apparent ‘good’ with ALL the downright hideous because THAT makes her, her! No one thinks of that…they just want the perceived amazing!!!
Now let’s step RIGHT INTO MY shoes and go back a few years to the first time I decided to present on a stage at one of our events in Australia, where David and I were teaching course participants THE most phenomenal ‘life’ tools called ‘Integral Accounting’ and ‘Breathing Enterprise’ . The tools David has used for over 20 years to create enterprises and / or architect how you want your life to look!
In order for people to really understand how to apply these tools, I wanted to demonstrate a practical, real-life example of their application from my own lived experience. So, a dear friend Lorraine Mill and I used the Integral Accounting and Breathing Enterprise ‘maps’ to create a workshop for women. Our challenge was that we had SO much potential content that if we tried to teach and share ALL that we had in that one weekend, it would be utter overwhelm! We needed to know WHAT specifically to teach…. what was the MOST relevant area of focus! It was confirmed with great gusto that THE screaming at you topic that was bursting forth for a workshop was - THE actual ‘body’ / body image!
Now I am going to share some very real accounts of my childhood that when told will help you make sense of why THE Body was THE thing! As a child, I was subjected to years of sexual abuse from an array of step-fathers who gave the illusion of wanting to be with my mother but really had their eye on… ‘the little girl’. This rather dark area of my life I had unconsciously ‘blanked out’ up until a month before this workshop! .… more on that soon. I also grew up with a mother who would constantly diminish the way I looked with specific references to my thin body shape. She would tell me that NO man will like me for the way I was and that I will be left for someone else. Her most classic line was that ‘I don’t have much of a figure’. Another little gem to add was that at school, I was teased relentlessly for being very skinny and it took up until I was in my twenties to not look like a little girl and to start looking like a woman. SO, the end result for me was that I decided that many other women had beautiful bodies and that I was, as I called it, only ‘half of a woman’! I too was guilty of comparisons to others and self-depreciation!
Its interesting that not many people have the concept that being teased and vilified for being skinny has just the same hideous effect as being teased for being fat or any other ‘being different’ thing. It is the condescending vicious tone that people use that literally destroys your soul…. then you have that reinforced at home which adds to the deep inner sadness and self-loathing. You feel or decide I should say that there is something VERY wrong with you. You WISH you were beautiful, you wish you were confident, you wish you were popular…you just wished to ‘BE NORMAL’…what ever that was but I knew that it sure was NOT me!
Now just before I get back to me being on the stage presenting how to use these tools and this little story, I need to add a profound event that occurred prior to the workshop. As I mentioned above, only a month before, I began experiencing more and more of what I can best describe as ‘flashes’ of step fathers really close to me, right in my space which would cause anger and confusion, there were also increased nightmares and then physical symptoms of not being able to breathe properly …. something wanted to surface! With the help of my beautiful husband David and Lorraine, we helped piece together my childhood and all the hideousness that I had unknowingly buried. As you can imagine, that was an exceedingly difficult time!
Now back to the Aussie Workshop… I was unsure if I wanted to or felt it necessary to share the recent events that had unfolded with everyone in the audience, I did not know if I was strong enough or if it was an important inclusion at that moment…
It was then that ‘life’ decided what was to unfold…
As I was talking, David asked me, “Kim do you consider yourself beautiful”? Before I could answer a participant yelled out from the back of the room; “Of course she thinks she is beautiful”! Now it is important to add and I will try and be as diplomatic as I can but you also need to see the reality of this particular participant! She was a mean spirited, middle aged woman that had daggers for me the whole workshop because she decided that ‘the pretty girl’ was the one to be despised…. She decided that I was the popular girl that was beautiful and had an easy life…. a life she decided to envy but with disdain and cruelty! She had never up until that moment of yelling from the back, had one conversation with me, she would just walk past and very much ignore me. Her opinions were all based on assumptions and her outburst was the volcanic eruption of her venom!
So…red flag to a bull… the bull being me as I had learned through my childhood and nursing career NOT to suffer bullies!
I paused, collected myself and became VERY present and proceeded to let everyone know THE reason why I, Kim Martin did not see myself as beautiful and why I was inspired to talk about body image….. I had firsthand experience on how soul destroying a negative body image can be and I shared my most personal journey…. a journey still VERY fresh in my every waking moment. As I spoke, I watched faces look with disbelief… so many in that room had assumed that I always must have been beautiful and that I had always seen myself that way. When I got to the sexual abuse part, that was when the tears and emotions really activated and deep healings occurred.
A stunned silence…. A LOT of self-reflection…. and then the most amazing thing happened…. one by one, many of the women in the course started to share their own stories of sexual abuse, stories that their own husbands who where right next to them had never heard… there was a united freeing of many souls! This was possible because they felt safe…. I had ‘gone first’ and been so real and vulnerable that they knew if I could do it and not disappear into a puff of smoke!! … that they could do it too!
I felt such a deep gratitude for my strength in that moment and for David’s love and encouragement. I KNEW I had achieved a major milestone in regards to changing the genetic lineage of abuse that was rife in my family and also in helping heal some deep wounds in many people, including myself.
Want to know how I was able to integrate and take back MY power following ‘all this’…. AND want to know how I finally smashed the abuse cycle….
Watch this space my beautiful friends…. another ‘Kim Adventure’ is brewing!
In the mean time, check out my other blogs and ALL that makes me, me on my website - www.theartofbeingkim.com
For more information on our events, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org