During a “#NewYearNewMe” roundtable session, BIC’s 2023 Soleil Squad shared their thoughts on the importance of grooming, and women empowerment 

A study that looks at people’s success in keeping their new years’ resolutions found that 77% made it through the first week, 55% made it to the end of the month, and 40% made it to the end of the sixth month. This is according to research published by the South African College of Applied Psychology in 2021. The research states that keeping resolutions requires behavioral change, which essentially means rewiring one’s brain to change mindset and habits.

As we enter the new year, tradition has been to set new year’s resolutions that could potentially lead to growth. It can be anything from spending more time at the gym to adding more to your savings, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, furthering your studies, getting a new car, or working on your self-development. The key to achieving resolutions is to make sure they are attainable. A new year marks the start of a fresh perspective and a new vision. You are rebranding yourself by committing to becoming a better you.

BIC Soleil Squad

Keeping in line with their commitment to motivating and empowering all South African females, the BIC Soleil Squad members share their aspirations for 2023. During a roundtable session Lerato Ndlovu, Savannah Raine Taylor, and Yonela Makalima shared the same sentiment that introspection contributes significantly to choosing your new year’s resolutions. The theme for the conversation was “What #NewYearNewMe Means to You”. The three ladies have recently been crowned the official Soleil Ambassadors for 2022/2023.

Accountability and self-contentment
Lerato says in recent months she has learned the importance of accountability. One is often quick to redirect “the blame” to someone else, whereas you are the only one responsible for your actions. “Holding myself accountable is a commitment I’ll make going forward. I’ve always been told what is expected of me, but now is the time to remove that structure and do what is best for me. Every single day, I work towards becoming a better version of myself because I am just simply holding myself accountable. I am doing the little things. If I said, I am going to wake up at a certain time in the morning, I need to wake up at that time. If I tell myself, I don’t have time in the day, but I end up spending two-hour scrolling on social media, that’s time I could have put into something that could have built me. I could have learned something new.”

According to Yonela, moving forward, she will embrace self-contentment. The notion of going that extra mile has been part of her philosophy for years, without acknowledging her initial efforts. I have gotten into a habit of trying to do different things and as much as that’s positive, I’ve realized that I’ve never really reached a place of self-contentment. It always felt as though I needed to add and modify things, and I end up failing to recognize the effort I put in. If you are constantly trying to change everything about yourself, it adds a lot of pressure. I’ve decided to take on a different approach in the coming year which is just defining what my core values are, at the core of who I am, and embracing that.”

The importance of grooming (and sticking to it)
A grooming regimen is important for all three squad members. As the term implies, it refers to the self-confidence boost that comes from putting extra effort into looking good. Lerato says: “I love grooming. I love taking care of myself. I love looking good. The way you look and the way you present yourself affects how you feel and how you present yourself to people. It is your social currency. I love doing my hair. I love plucking my eyebrows. It’s the little things that make your day better.”

To Savannah, who will begin her studies in marketing in 2023, grooming also refers to smelling good. “One of the biggest things that my mom has taught me since I was very young was to smell good. People will always remember you by your scent. I’ve received so many compliments because I never go anywhere without perfume.”

Yonela has admitted that she allows other priorities to get in the way of grooming. However, she is ready to change that in the new year. “It has happened so many times that I have canceled nail appointments, postponed shaving, or just canceled something grooming-related because of another responsibility. Then, after attending to that responsibility, I would tell myself I should have spent the time taking care of myself.”

Women should have each other’s backs
For years, open dialogue between young girls, women, and their elders has been challenging in the sense that grandmothers, mothers, aunts, and other family members have never felt comfortable sharing sensitive information. Young girls or young women are often influenced by this to seek counsel from their friends, or from someone that they should not consider their first choice for advice.

Lerato echoes the sentiment of transparency: “One thing that I would like to see in terms of women empowerment is women having more honest conversations with each other.  I found, especially in my culture, a lot of things are taboo, or hidden. You can’t speak about certain topics, and it’s only when you get older that you can start having these conversations. If things are explained to us in a way that we can understand at a young age, I think many of us would have made different decisions. By having honest conversations, you help each other, you heal each other, and growth takes place.”

Women seem to be breaking down each other on social media in a growing trend that Savannah says needs to be stopped. “As women, we should all root for each other. Social media is a massive platform and remarks can either make or break us.”

BIC is committed to instilling confidence in women
Through the Soleil Squad, BIC empowers and motivates women to be confident, reach their highest potential, and embrace their unique and diverse selves.

Submitted by Eclipse Communications