Years ago, I was obsessed with how I looked

I was sold on the idea that I needed a partner, and you know I needed to look desirable all the time. This was so I could bag or maintain said partner (and then I would be happy forever because Disney said so remember). So I'd always put style over warmth.

Anyway, if you know me personally, you'll know that this is ridiculous because I am the coldest woman on this earth - it's official. I get the chills on a hot summers day in the UK.

This desire to always look 'cool' also stemmed from the insecurity of coming from a poor background and *on occasion* being forced to wear boys hand me downs. *cough cough*

Fleeces are 'in' this year - did you know? 

I only know this utterly fascinating piece of information after a conversation with my dear mother.

"Mum, I have something to tell you."
"Oh god, what?"

She looked at me, nervously. The only other times I've spoken those words were when I got pregnant at 20, and more recently when I told her I was moving to Asia. 

'I'm getting a fleece'. I said.
I felt like it was worthy of an announcement.

She cracked up.

"Fleeces are in this year!" She said.
"I don't think so, mother." *sigh - eye roll* 

(says the woman who no longer looks at fashion magazines or consumes any kind of media)

And yet, and yet, they are!! Fleeces are in!


I've been thinking of getting a fleece for some time.  I tested out the idea with one of my dearest friends. She looked at me in horror to which I retorted: 

'Look I am over 40 now. I think it's perfectly acceptable?' 

She didn't respond.

I put my eyes to the floor in shame and thought maybe I'm making a mistake?

Should I? Shouldn't I?


Why am I telling you any of this?  This ridiculous story about fleeces?

Because it's hard to shake the baggage of our past, isn't it?

No matter how much time we spend working on ourselves, trying to shed the sticky layers of who we are or were, these deep-rooted beliefs crop up time and time again. A lifetime of conditioning is hard to conquer.

Beliefs like:

  • I need to look good
  • I need to dress cool
  • I need to be a size 8
  • I need a partner
  • I need so many followers on Instagram
  • etc
  • etc
  • etc

All these beliefs stem from the idea that we are not good enough AS WE ARE.

We ARE all good enough, exactly as we are. Right here. Right now.


Ok, I'm off to buy the fleece...


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About me

Hannah Anstee portrait

Hannah Anstee is a former British Wellness Journalist turned Women’s Midlife & Wellbeing Coach.

You may know her from her work as Beauty Editor at YOGA Magazine or her contributions to The Independent or Psychologies Magazine.

Hannah uses a kind and candid approach to help women rewrite their stories.