By Dr. Paula Bloom
When FootSmart approached me to be a blogger for them I was so excited. My experience with FootSmart was limited to their health products in SkyMall magazine and their catalogs hanging around my in-laws’ coffee table. When I went on the FootSmart.com website I couldn’t believe how many of the shoe brands that I’ve been wearing for years they actually carry: FitFlop (I’ve been wearing the same pair of black patent FitFlop thong sandals for 4 years in a row), Dansko (my favorite pair ever had a Dalmatian print on them), Clarks (black leather ankle boots from last year are still one of my favorites and I just put away for the winter a pair of brown thong sandals from 3 years ago that look great with my long, flowy sundresses), Privo(platform wedges that look perfect with wide-leg linen pants), Teva(every 5 years or so I buy a new pair because that is how long it takes me to wear a pair out), Born(during my first pregnancy I had 3 pairs in the exact same style in 3 different colors and they were the only shoes I could wear) and I could go on and on.
So why would I, a psychologist and commentator, choose to be a featured blogger for a comfort shoe company? What does mental health have to do with lower body health?
Here are 3 reasons I said YES!
1. I’m going to be doing a lot more walking! For the past several years I worked at a clinic that was a 40 minute drive. I recently opened my own private practice that is an 8-block walk from my house. I want to find shoes that I can walk back and forth to work in but then look great at work. I’ve lost about 40 pounds since the year began and I want to continue to get healthier and healthier by walking more and more. When I am wearing comfortable shoes I’m more likely to take the stairs and walk places without it having to be dedicated exercise time.
2. I’m sick and tired of being uncomfortable in my life. As I get older I am becoming less and less willing to be uncomfortable for the sake of how others perceive me. I want my shoes to match my emotional growth. I don’t know about you but when my feet hurt it affects my mood. A few months before FootSmart approached me, I had just done the ritual of clearing my closet of all the shoes that hurt. I go through this every few years. I tell myself that I refuse to choose pain over comfort, no matter how cute the shoe. This usually lasts for a few months until I see an amazing pointy-toed shoe on sale that makes me feel like I look 10 pounds thinner and I buy it even if it is a size too small. (I wear an 11 and most stores only carry to a 10).
3. I love style and shoes! I used to think that if I was really a deep spiritual human being I wouldn’t care about style and fashion and red lipstick wouldn’t make me happy. What I am realizing is that for me beauty IS spiritual and feeling grounded is a key to happiness. Shoes connect me to the ground, so why not make that connection comfortable and fabulous?
So, I am so thrilled and honored to begin this blogging adventure. I will be talking about life, shoes and what it means to be a maturing woman, mother, wife and psychologist who is choosing to be comfortable with who she is and what she wears. Blogging so publicly about my shoes will also keep me accountable to this commitment. So please, if you see me around town or on TV wearing shoes that are too small (feel free to ask to see the size of my shoe, remember I wear an 11) or my shoes look obviously uncomfortable, you have my permission to CALL ME OUT — just like you might with a good friend who tells you she finally broke it off for good with the ex-boyfriend but the guy keeps texting during your GNO (girls night out). It takes a village!