How can we develop poise?
Poise in a woman is a beautiful thing. It is one of the signatures of a beautiful and elegant woman. Poise is the beauty of being in the moment, or being unrushed or beauty of sitting still.
Poise like Coco Chanel and Karl Lagerfield.
Wouldn’t it be the best to look graceful from every angle? And we will be free from awkwardness, stumbling, ugly gestures..
Developing poise takes time. If only we could do it all today!
To develop poise, one must study herself and increase awareness of how she communicates through her movements. If she stirs her coffee, she does it quietly. If someone is standing across her,
she listens politely and attentively, without fidgeting, looking at her watch or letting her eyes wander.
While you develop poise, sometimes we can feel very self conscious. The only way to combat that is to practice, act confident and don’t worry about the mistakes you’ve made.
This process is like we are “untraining” our bad habits to develop ones. It is also the body’s habits that we
‘untrain’ to walk, sit, move. It is ‘muscle memory’.
The old rule of the book: Balance one on your head!
In the past, young women went to charm school or finishing school to learn how to sit, stand, walk and even dance.
The traditions of this schools are dying out because they are expensive and not held in high regard like they were once did.
These days, if you have an opportunity to enter yourself or your daughter to beauty or glitz pageants, do so! There are more to pagents than winning or beauty.
She will learn to carry herself, personal grooming, social graces and how to handle sticky situations like being put on a spot, performing, winning or losing. They are great opportunities for us to learn a thing or two about developing poise.
History of Poise Development
All princesses has a “Deportment” trainer in all aspects of social graces. Just like in the movie The Princess Diaries, did you watch that?
This trainer has existed since a long time ago, even during Biblical times.
We can see its existence from the book of Esther in the bible.
The Story Goes:
The king organized a big feast and had many important guests. He ordered his wife Vashti to display her beauty before the guests. She refused to come. He got mad and removed her as queen. He then orders all “beautiful young girls to be presented to him”, so he can choose a new queen.
Quoting from the Bible in Esther, Chapter 2,
(and the following numbers are verses or sentence numbers)
8 When the king’s order and edict had been proclaimed, many girls were brought to the citadel of Susa and put under the care of Hegai. Esther also was taken to the king’s palace and entrusted to Hegai, who had charge of the harem. (Hegai, here was the royal trainer.)
9 The girl pleased him and won his favor. Immediately he provided her with her beauty treatments and special food. He assigned to her seven maids selected from the king’s palace and moved her and her maids into the best place in the harem.
(Why did he do that? See how Esther won his favor in verse 15.)
10 Esther had not revealed her nationality and family background, because Mordecai had forbidden her to do so. 11 Every day he walked back and forth near the courtyard of the harem to find out how Esther was and what was happening to her.
12 Before a girl’s turn came to go in to King Xerxes, she had to complete twelve months of beauty treatments prescribed for the women, six months with oil of myrrh and six with perfumes and cosmetics. 13 And this is how she would go to the king: Anything she wanted was given her to take with her from the harem to the king’s palace. 14 In the evening she would go there and in the morning return to another part of the harem to the care of Shaashgaz, the king’s eunuch who was in charge of the concubines. She would not return to the king unless he was pleased with her and summoned her by name.
15 When the turn came for Esther (the girl Mordecai had adopted, the daughter of his uncle Abihail) to go to the king, she asked for nothing other than what Hegai, the king’s eunuch who was in charge of the harem, suggested.
Imagine being singled out for royal treatment?
Other girls turned into a diva, but Esther remained humble. And she won the favor of everyone who saw her.
16 She was taken to King Xerxes in the royal residence in the tenth month, the month of Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign.
17 Now the king was attracted to Esther more than to any of the other women, and she won his favor and approval more than any of the other virgins. So he set a royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti. 18 And the king gave a great banquet, Esther’s banquet, for all his nobles and officials. He proclaimed a holiday throughout the provinces and distributed gifts with royal liberality.
She won the King with her poise!
Definition of Poise: graceful elegant bearing in a person, composure and dignity of manner
Imagine training for one year for beauty and poise?
Grace Kelly begged for a voice recorder at the age of 18 from her father, she worked on terribly hard to remove her country accent, because she wanted to elevate herself. She is now an icon of eternal elegance and poise.
In Memoirs of a Geisha
, the book and the movie,
it allowed us to peek into this fascinating old world of women, who devoted their lives to beauty and art of the woman form.
In the movie, Memoirs of a Geisha
, it is shown how the little geishas-in-training learn how to develop poise. They would practice siting and then getting up from seating position. “Not like a horse” Michelle Yeoh, acting as the trainer, would say.
Learning how to develop poise is like learning to put make up on but for the body! While you put make up to present your best face forward, poise is putting your personal best presentation to the world.
While we don’t have to train ourselves to please and entertain men, the take-away message developing poise is that we can do this just for ourselves, which is more than enough.