Margherita Barbieri is a blogger and anorexic warrior who uses social media as a platform to share her personal experience in order to help others. As a dancer, vegan and mental health ambassador nutrition, she encourages other women to embrace their femininity and express their unique qualities. Read more in her interview below.
"From passion to pain. At a young age, I had found purpose in ballet. I felt like an accomplished artist who inspired many with peak control of my physicality, but my competitiveness came at a price.
I had to be thin.
I had to be thin.
I had to be thin.
Until one day - I had no choice..."
How did you fall upon your career and makes you love what you do?
I believe I fell upon my career as a blogger because of my passions and also my past. I have encountered many battles in my previous years, in which I had to fight daily to restore both my physical and mental health. After finally achieving these two things I know that I never want to slip backwards into the destructive cycle that once consumed my life. From this experience I have understood the importance of health and this is my main motivation to blog and write about eating disorders in hopes to help others take back their mental kingdoms and welcome back a healthy life.
What would you tell yourself when you were younger and/or what advice would you give other women?
If I could go back in time and tell my younger-self something it would be to aim for the stars. Aiming for the stars means aspiring to get somewhere, do something, be something. Its about setting your ambitions high and striving each day to achieve them. The phrase, ‘Aim for the stars’, is most importantly about the journey that the actual achievement. Aiming for the stars means you should grant yourself the respect you deserve and not back off from challenges you find important to you. At the time the phrase, "Aim for the stars" was coined, space travel was not possible. In other words, "Aim for the stars” means to aim for the seemingly impossible, desirable thing you want to do and not settling for anything less. Aiming for the stars means working for the things you believe in and climbing toward the achievements you have dreamed of. Aiming for the stars is that little thing that encourages our inner voice to say, "Go ahead, keep going, don’t give up, you can do it!”. These are the exact words of wisdom I wouldn’t only tell my younger self but this is also exactly what advice I would give all other women despite our ages.
"In real terms 'self love' means embracing your shadow side, accepting all your imperfections, unraveling all those differences from yourself and others."
Is there something you were self-conscious about when you were younger and have learned to embrace today?
In real terms 'self love' means embracing your shadow side, accepting all your imperfections, unraveling all those differences from yourself and others. It means unpicking your life’s jigsaw and putting it back together in the same (perhaps 'dysfunctional') way but with a different mind set. This time (even when it may look exactly the same as before) you'll love the final piece because it's you. The puzzle is you, and despite how imperfect it appears, it's yours. I have lots of things I felt self-conscious about and I have lots of things that I still sometimes feel self-conscious about - I am human after all. My imperfections make me, me and they created my puzzle different to everyone else’s in the whole entire world. Being different should be celebrated and even though we may sometimes feel that our differences are our imperfections, in someone else’s eyes they may appear as the complete opposite.
What do you love about yourself?
Often when people ask this question they expect you to respond with physical attributes, but I have learnt that the only things you can truly love about yourself are internal. You would never say that the reason you love your best friend or mother is because, “they have great legs” or because, “they’ve got nice hair”. Those things would never come to mind, instead you would probably say something like, “because they are kind” or “because they are funny” and this is exactly why the only things I love about myself are to do with my personality. You can change your physical appearance overnight, in a couple of hours at the hairdressers or few weeks on a diet but you can’t change your personality - you are born with a certain character. On that note what I love about myself is my determination, my ability to be compassionate towards others, my generosity and my distinctive laugh.
What do you love about lingerie?
A big part of finding myself during my recovery was developing a personal style. I had always liked lingerie, but I had never really pegged down why I liked it. I knew I loved to slip on lingerie, it gave me an odd boost that felt like a crackle of fire inside my stomach. It’s only now that I understand what that odd sense of power I felt inside was, and it’s only now I know what spark lite those embers. The spark was the lingerie, the embers were my self-love growing and the fire was my femininity. What I love about lingerie is this feeling it gives me, it’s almost irreplaceable and I haven’t found this feeling anywhere else. It feels like a mixture of pride in my body, confidence in my sexiness, defiance against my eating disorder and a connection with my mature yet still slightly playful side.
What are you most excited about?
Now that I have a highly positive perspective of life and have realized my inner strength the thing that excites me the most is being and feeling ready to embrace my passions, my love, my self-belief and my determination. I am so excited to reach my potential. I simply wish to continue with the passions I have for performing, modelling and dancing alongside striving forward with my passions for blogging, helping others and being part of the vegan movement. In short what excites me most is continuing to do what I love.