My mate TL suggested that if you struggle with confliction between the person everyone sees versus the person you desire to be on the inside, trying to fit in at the cost of your own self-expression, you end up holding back your own opinion, dress so as not to draw attention, don’t make investments in the things you desire, don’t put yourself out, hiding from life and life hiding from you.
She suggested in order to stop hiding, because life is more fun when you get out there and fully embody the person you want to be, you might need to do some homework. Studying iconic people you admire, who are passionate about something, who live their lives as a work of art with substance and style. Watch their interviews, read their biographies, study their presence. TL did this and discovered there is no formula to being iconic; it’s an essence that cannot be replicated – although can be broken down foundation elements of confidence, charm, self-worth, femininity, elegance and a passion for life.
It can be available to everyone. Every person has an iconic heart – that thing that makes you extremely rare and special. It’s the foundation elements that appear in different forms that allow us to cultivate our own iconic appeal.
What does it mean to be iconic? Dictionary definitions include something or someone who has the characteristics of an icon – an image, emblem, idol or hero, something or someone worthy of veneration. Many consider people like Audrey Hepburn as iconic because of her style, but it could also include spirituality, virtue, or indeed evil or corrupt. Either way it’s something or someone instantly recognisable, well know and acknowledged especially for distinctive excellence. Michael Stelzner suggested that people are attracted to your values and that distinction is important to help create connection and stand out from the crowd but you can be distinctive without being iconic, but you can’t be iconic without first becoming distinctive. An iconic person is someone who has made a tangible difference and positive influence on a measurable scale.
Iconic leaders, influential people all have something in common – they have all overcome barriers along the way and people want to listen to them. They have vision, are clear and consistent, they listen, keep their cool, adapt and put people at ease.
When I think of icons, I tend to think of people from history, Jane Austen, Albert Einstein, Stephen Hawking, Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth I, Andy Warhol, Oscar Wilde, but also 21st Century people like Oprah Winfrey, Michelle Obama, Will Smith, Malala, David Attenborough, Laverne Cox, Serena Williams and Jacinda Ardern. All of these people have done amazing things and contributed to society and humanity. They all have elements of confidence, charm, self-worth and a passion for life. Something to try to emulate.
Who would be your icons?
One thought on “Iconic Cultivation – surround yourself with what and who inspires you”
I’m currently trying to follow the likes of Davina McCall and Julia Bradbury on twitter and Instagram. They are ladies of a similar age to me, going through similar life stages, who have a platform to discuss and investigate emotional, physical and mental issues that may be affecting women in my age group. Not sure if that classes them as iconic, but I value those things about them more than just an iconic appearance. I do however support your choice in Michelle Obama. Other iconic women from history that I admire are Eleanor of Aquataine and Empress Matilda as strong women in a man’s world who managed to hold their own 💪