What does it feel like to go from physically unattractive to attractive?

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Answer by Siri:

It feels good most of the time, but it can be quite frustrating. Many people assume I've always looked the way I do now, and that as a result I must be a snob, or have some sort of sense of entitlement.

My case is extreme in the sense that I went from literally being invisible to men for the majority of my life, to receiving comments daily from men all over the world telling me I'm beautiful. As an adult film performer I am somewhat in the public eye, so I get a lot of attention for and comments about my appearance.

^ Freshman in high school

^ Sophomore in high school. Theater geek.

I've always been friendly and outgoing and I had great friends growing up. I was a tomboy and never looked very feminine. I was always "the weird one" in my group of friends. I was fortunate to not be so far from the mark in attractiveness that I was bullied for the way I looked. Instead, I was simply completely ignored.

I was fortunate to have friends in high school (mostly from theater) who knew me for the person I was, so I wasn't tortured over it. But I wasn't happy either. Nobody was yelling in my face, "You're ugly!" But I felt unattractive and invisible. Nobody ever asked me on a date. Boys I liked wouldn't even look twice at me. Nobody told me I was cute. Nobody even told me I had potential to be cute. The psychological effect this had on me was pretty much the equivalent of being told I was unattractive. I was sure everyone was thinking it, but instead of saying it out loud, they just ignored me.

I thought I looked okay. Not terrible, but not good. In other words, I didn't look in the mirror and hate the way I looked. I was just clueless! I literally had no idea how my appearance could translate to other people. I had no concept of caring for and cultivating my appearance and how that might affect the way others perceived me and the opportunities available to me. I thought, naively, that everyone would always notice my personality first.

After high school I had my first serious dating relationship. With a woman. I'd always had crushes on girls, but never did anything about it. Dating a girl for the first time made me realize I was a lesbian, and shortly after I came out to my family and friends. And… I began to look more like a "stereotypical" lesbian. A borderline androgynous/butch look. This was also when I realized for the first time that I wanted to be in adult films. (At the time my ambition was to do lesbian films specifically. Obviously that changed eventually. We'll get there.)

This look was fine for me. I attracted a number of women with this look. However, after a few years I began to realize that I was still attracted to men, and I did not know what to do about that. I realized that I had adopted the more androgynous look not because I liked it or felt that it suited me well, but because I had no idea how to be confident in my appearance, so it was easier to act like I didn't care about the way I looked. I still had very little confidence in my appearance. I didn't think I deserved to be confident.

For me, my outward appearance has been a gauge of my overall comfort in my own skin. When I felt least confident in myself was when I also looked the least conventionally "attractive." I'm much more confident now, but that's not a result of my appearance. My appearance is the result of building my own confidence slowly. I've made changes to my appearance in small steps over the course of several years, but I decided to make each change because I felt confident enough to "pull it off," so to speak. In other words, I didn't go through some 10-hour miracle makeover and look completely different. In fact, I don't really look that different from my high school self, I've just found a more accurate way to express myself.

After an incredible amount of self-discovery and embracing my sexual flexibility, I am now happily married to a man whom I met and fell in love with before I was "a swan," (who in many instances saw beauty in me before I could see it myself), still identify as bisexual, and I have built a successful career as a popular adult film performer, despite not fitting the adult industry's mold of what a typical porn star should look like.

This is me now:

Out of necessity, because I often do my own makeup for photo shoots, I've also learned how to do makeup really well. I'm totally comfortable wearing little to no makeup, as in the photo above, but I especially enjoy enhancing my features and playing with different looks, as in the photos below.

I'm constantly fed jokes about how I must have gotten tons of attention in high school for my large chest. Most people assume I've always been conventionally attractive, that I've coasted through life on a steady train of ego inflation. I feel like telling them about how I had absolutely no confidence when I was younger. I feel like telling them about how confused and hurt I was all through my adolescence, because my unpolished shell obscured what I thought must be a reasonably tasty nut hiding inside. (For the record, if I were an actual nut, I'd be an almond.)

I'm happier now than I ever was before. But not because others look at me now and see a swan — and surely, I'm not everyone's type! Nobody can be a swan to everyone, and why would you want to be?  — But because I know what kind of person I am inside, and I feel like my outward expression of myself, physically and otherwise, finally mirrors what's inside of me.

What does it feel like to go from physically unattractive to attractive?

Social Times – Consumers Value Social Media Presence — But Some Small Businesses Aren’t Buying

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Originally posted on TECHMarket Communications:

social times

August 14, 2015

By Kimberlee Morrison

shutterstock_156141602

Small businesses stand to gain a lot from engaging with social media. Reviews and other user-generated content can yield a great return and drive purchases. However, according to data from digital display software provider Enplug, 34 percent of small business owners don’t think social media can provide value for their business.

Enplug commissioned market research firm YouGov to survey small business owners and consumers, to find how they felt about social media’s impact on business. YouGov polled 506 American small business owners and 1,155 consumers between Feb. 27 and March 2.

The results largely indicated that small business owners aren’t aware of the weight consumers give to social media content. Small businesses are missing out on great opportunities when they hesitate to engage with customers online.

Thirty-six percent of businesses don’t maintain a social media presence that allows users to comment. The problem…

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Find Out What Country You Drink Like

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Find Out What Country You Drink Like

Originally posted on TIME:

Do you drink wine like a Frenchman or down milk like a Swede? Use the sliders below to see which country matches your drinking preferences for five different kinds of beverages, according to two studies that measured drinking behavior, country by country, across the globe.

[time-interactive id=drinking_global]

A recent study published by PLOS One sheds new light on global consumption patterns.

One lesson: the more a country earns, the more fruit juice its people drink, according to Gitanjali Singh, assistant professor at Tufts University’s Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy and lead author on the paper. Wealth isn’t the only sign of how someone fills her glass. According to the study, young people–and men in particular–are more likely to prefer sugars sweetened beverages.

Similarly, a 2014 World Health Organization report provided a picture of how people consume alcoholic beverages across the globe. The average person 15 years and…

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Here’s what happened inside Google HQ when Alphabet was announced

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Here’s what happened inside Google HQ when Alphabet was announced

Originally posted on Fortune:

Google’s announcement on Monday that it would restructure itself under a new parent company called Alphabet shocked almost everyone in the business world from Silicon Valley to Wall Street.

But nobody, it seems, was more stunned than Google’s own employees, who all week have been posting reactions on Quora, the online forum for answering other peoples’ questions. Googlers from programming interns to senior engineers have been posting descriptions of the Googleplex atmosphere immediately after the Alphabet news broke. By their accounts, work pretty much ground to a halt as they tried to make sense of the changes: The interns’ Google Hangout blew up with chatter; some were scared and unsure which Alphabet subsidiary they actually reported to; others celebrated their Google [fortune-stock symbol=”GOOG”] stockholdings as the company’s shares surged on the announcement. One engineer named Jorg Brown posted about experiencing the five stages of grief, starting with denial:…

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One Author’s Recipe for Loving Food and Losing Weight

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One Author’s Recipe for Loving Food and Losing Weight

Originally posted on The about.me Blog:

Darya Rose’s secret lies in real food and real science.

Darya helps people fall back in love with food and redefine their relationships with health. Growing up in Southern California during the Bay Watch era, Darya admits she spent 15 years on diets. Darya’s dieting caused body anxiety and weight gain and she soon realized that magazines and doctors were not giving her the right answer.

Science gave Darya her answer. Darya discovered that in order to be her healthiest self she needed to start focusing on eating what she loved. Darya’s since written Foodist, created the blog Summer Tomato and acquired a Ph.D. in neuroscience. 

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These people are so addicted to the Internet that they had to go to rehab

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These people are so addicted to the Internet that they had to go to rehab

Originally posted on Fusion:

For Charlie, it was clear that rehab was necessary when, after months of obsessively playing a smartphone game called Spirit Lords, her mother called her at college worried that she had taken up gambling. Her savings account was drained. Multiple overdraft notices had arrived at her parents’ house. Over five months, she had blown $8,000 on “spirit upgrades” and in-app purchases like rare weapons to help her beat the game.

“I thought that at some point I would probably stop and say, ‘This is enough.’ But it didn’t happen,” Charlie* told me. “That was a sign to my family and myself that I had an addiction.”

But 19-year-old Charlie wasn’t just addicted to Spirit Lords. Screens ruled her life. She spent hours on Tumblr talking to people she’s never met that she counts as her “closest friends.” She idled on Reddit. She chatted in forums. She Skyped. Online was where she felt most herself.

“My mom had…

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