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  • Writer's pictureKelly Crew

"Stop fidgeting...and smile."

We've all seen Pretty Woman a million times, right? Remember when they're at the polo match and she has on the polka dotted dress and great hat?

Richard Gere is trying to get her to let go of the car door handle and go into the match, even though she feels so out of her element. He tells her she belongs there and looks great - like a lady - and then he says, "Stop fidgeting...and smile."

Julia puts on her best smile, which lights up her face of course, and strides confidently into the fray with all those catty millionaire trophy wives.

Setting aside my feminist leanings and the argument that she's also a trophy girlfriend-ish person, I love that line. I think about it when I'm blue, when I'm nervous, when I feel insecure, and even when I'm pissy about something.

I know if I smile, I'll get a hit of dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin. These will boost my mood and make me feel more confident. Even a forced, fake, Miss America smile will gimme the juice.

Also, in sports psychology they say if you don't visualize the win, you don't really stand a chance. I've found that visualization works. I think the only way I've survived living in my obese body is because I don't see myself as obese.

I have something like reverse body dismorphia. I'm sometimes surprised when I catch my reflection because I'm way fatter than I imagine. I don't see myself skinny, but more like an 18 than a 28 (my size now).

I figure if I have to be one or the other, I'll take imagining myself thinner. I've been less miserable and haven't let my looks stop me from much in my life. It's been a great ride and is getting better every day and I get smaller and smaller.

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