Living a "Picturesque Life" doesn't mean that you constantly post everything on social media (even though I do, admittedly) and it doesn't mean you live solely for appearances either. This isn't a post on vanity--it's a post on finding the beauty in your life and owning yourself.
I'm obsessed with tumblr. I've had my blog on there for around 4+ years, with 37,948 posts and counting. I like to think of it as a living, breathing, dynamic "mood board" for my life. I reblog and post stuff that is pertinent to me, that I think is beautiful, that I hope my life will look like in the coming years. It's a very personal thing for me.
Same goes for Pinterest. I have over 600 pins of outfits on there, over 500 inspirational quotes, and 75 pins of what I want my future home to look like. I channel my ambitions and desires in visuals. Like I use Twitter to curate news, I use these platforms to curate my aesthetic, my personal style. As someone who more often than not feels very lost and very alone, reconnecting with who I am and who I want to be gives me the extra push to get out of bed in the morning and to keep on pushing through.
And even daydreams! The places you go inside your head when you're zoning out in class or when you're trying to study. Where do you see yourself? What are you doing? What are you wearing? I'm always in some exotic or exciting place, stylishly dressed, confident, happy, and doing what I love or surrounded by beauty--whether that be materialistic beauty or the beauty of love and friendship.
But I've been keeping my images of beauty to myself for years. I'll look at a picture and think Wow, I should totally wear that, and then I'll never wear it or buy anything like it. I'll wear my standard uniform; I'll never take style risks. I'll never wear what I truly want to because I'm afraid of what other people think. I know everyday outfit choice is such a small thing, but I realized that me not directly going after what I wanted in my wardrobe was reflective of how I approached the rest of my life. I was becoming the personification of "a rut." I know who I am and I know who I want to be--and yet, I'm not going after it because I'm too lazy and worried about the judgement of others.
Chasing beauty in your life means investing in yourself--time, money, appreciation. Buying a pair of heels that you've been dying over and taking the time to do your hair and makeup in the morning is not vain at all; it's simply taking care of yourself and taking ownership of who you are. How you present yourself to the world and what image you project to others is just as important, just as integral as your emotions and values. I'm just starting to realize this now, after almost 20 years. Like my Mother always says: "Have some pride." There should be no neglecting yourself; you should be top priority.
A person who was once very important to me sent me this:
At first I thought this image was silly. Being obsessed with yourself? What the hell? Why in the world would I lie about how I feel about myself? But, many many months after this was sent my way, I finally get it. I never really abide by "fake it to you make it," because I like to be genuine, but in my case, my confidence needs something to back it up other than my sheer will to "be a confident person." We're always told that confidence is from the inside-out, but if you internally feel crappy about your exterior and your surroundings, how in the world are you going to be at peace with yourself on the inside?
So, I guess my point is: Become the living embodiment of what you see as beautiful. Surround yourself with beautiful things, things that make you happy. Drown yourself in them. Yellow tulips. Flare jeans. Casually-worn high heels. A well-made t-shirt. Any shade of blue (except teal). Stripes. Coffee cups. Cafés. Brunch places and brunch food. Boatloads of mascara. Friends. Family. People that make you feel confident and happy to be who you are. Down to the last damn detail--because in those details, you'll find who you are and you'll slowly become the person you've always wanted to be.