“Make your heart the most beautiful thing about you.” – unknown
I saw this quote the other day and it led me to ask myself "What is the most beautiful thing about me?” It was hard to not think first about the physical things that I get most frequently complimented on. My full eyebrows are en vogue at the moment, my blue eyes are something I share with only 8% of the world and my naturally straight hair has never had a problem growing. These things may help make me Caite, but I hope they aren’t what makes me beautiful. I am beautiful, and so are you. But beauty has less to do with what you see in a photograph and a lot more to do with what others see in you on a Tuesday afternoon.
So instead of asking myself, I asked some of the people closest to me the question: “In your opinion, what is the most beautiful thing about me?” I purposefully asked people who have seen some not-so-beautiful moments in my life as well to get the most honest responses. I wrote a 90-page thesis in college surrounding survey results, can you tell?
I had 14 responses. Not a single person led with my eyebrows, eyes, hair or waist size. And that made me happy.
The first person to get back to me said simply this: “That’s easy. Confidence.”
Some of my closest people (who I would argue are also some of the best people this planet has to offer) used these words in relation to my beauty: confidence, loyalty, empathy, grace, resilience, integrity, compassion, thoughtfulness. Two of 14 even mentioned my heart, just like the quote! I got compliments on how well I handle the relationships with my family, friends and how I care for my animals. I was called genuine, philanthropic and strong.
Don’t get me wrong I love to put eyeshadow on these blue eyes of mine, curl my long hair and Lord am I grateful my mom didn’t let me pluck my eyebrows back in 2007, but that’s not what makes me beautiful. Asking that question made me realize that beauty is actually just what others see in me (and you) that makes their own hearts smile.
Whether you’re having a good hair day or a bad one, I encourage you to do this same exercise. You don’t have to give much context, just ask your people the same question I asked mine.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll wake up tomorrow feeling a little more beautiful.