Building Confidence in Women One Consultation at a Time: Let the Voice of Women be Heard – by Global Image Consultant Michelle T. Sterling

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December 10th, 2014

As a global image consultant I’ve had the privilege of working with many female clients from New York, Miami, London, Hong Kong, to Dubai. And what amazes me the most is when I see businesswomen sitting in my office and they have self-confidence issues that impede them from achieving their goals and projecting strong and lasting first impressions.

Being American, spending half the year in Dubai and the other half between Miami and New York, it’s recently dawned on me how a woman’s confidence is not only shaped by her environment, but also by her culture, family, education, role models and most importantly her ambition. The key to success whether you are a male or female is not about how intelligent you are but it always begins with your motivation level, your drive, and your passion to succeed.

As a graduate of Wellesley College in the United States and having had commencement speakers like Hillary Rodman Clinton and Oprah, what’s most notable about successful women is when their work can make a difference in the lives of individuals.

As women, not only do we need to be good wives and mothers, but if we are able to make a difference as human beings, no matter how small that difference is, then we are able to feel good about ourselves and the contribution that we make in this world.

And all women should recognize their innate value whether you are a full time stay-at-home mother, a sales person at a retail department store, a politician, or a celebrity talk show host. Each woman makes a contribution in this world by your very presence and it is through acknowledging your presence that you will build your self-confidence.

In life we all start as little girls doing what our parents tell us to do because they are our role models as children. Therefore it’s important for a stay-at-home mother to acknowledge the importance of her role as a mother – they are the voices that inspire the growth and development of our children. You may not be the breadwinner of your family, however that is not your role and when you embrace your role, your children and our youth, which is the future voice of humanity, will benefit. Remember that when your husband asks you what contribution you make to this world as he comes home cranky from a long day at the office.

As a sales person in a retail department store, your very presence touches the lives of many women especially if you treat them with kindness, respect, and good customer service. Salespeople in Dubai often come to work with the wrong attitude that they will be mistreated and therefore they are rude, mistreated by customers, who in turn do not enjoy purchasing products from them. This also leaves a negative impression about them and develops stereotypical, global beliefs about them that negatively impact the impression of their culture. Therefore remember that any change in the world can start with one person, and if you start having a collective of individuals (like a group of sale people) behaving in a polite and respectful manner, this behavior fosters positive impressions that can ameliorate your life and the lives of other women that you touch throughout the day.

And as a politician or a TV talk show host, your visibility and your voice can help to motivate and inspire other women to be appreciated for their contribution to this world rather than be solely judged by the way you look. Women who use their bodies in an effort to help them improve their self confidence and self esteem are only promoting lack of respect from the opposite sex. Our value as women should not stem from being seen as an object that men covet which in turn pays our bills and feeds our children from previous marriages. Plastic surgery may temporarily help boost your self confidence however if you do not address the root of the problem and acknowledge yourself and your own innate value as a woman, then you’ll constantly be seeking the attention of others or putting others down to make yourself feel better about yourself.

Therefore as an image consultant, I can definitely appreciate the value of not only looking good from the outside but also feeling good on the inside. It’s the fundamental basis of developing your own self worth and self-image. However what happens to those women who are not blessed with good genes or who were not raised in good homes? What happens to those women and their self-image?

Just remember, that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. If you think you’re beautiful no matter how many extra kilos or pounds you have on your body, no matter what color skin you may have that develops negative stereotypes, conditioning the subconscious is the key to building yourself confidence so that when ever you walk into a room you make a positive first impression despite social stigmas. And if you need to first feel as best as you can on the outside, an image consultant’s role is to do the best they can to help you achieve that goal!

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About the Sterling Style Academy

The Sterling Style Academy trains and certifies prospective and aspiring image consultants, personal stylists, and personal shoppers to pursue the career of their dreams. With training programs held on-location in Miami, New York, Los Angeles, London, Hong Kong, Dubai, Mumbai, Shanghai, São Paulo, and Mexico City, as well as Online Training, Teleclasses, and Short eCourses, the Sterling Style Academy prepares students to become top notch pioneers in the image consulting, personal shopping, and personal styling industry.

Contact: Ashley Taylor, Training Coordinator

Sterling Style Academy






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