Joining me today is Stephanie Dolgoff, author of the new book, My Formerly Hot Life. Stephanie is a contributing editor at Parenting. Before that, she was a contributing editor at Real Simple, health director and features director at SELF magazine, and prior to that, executive editor and senior contributing editor at Glamour. She’s written for “O” The Oprah Magazine, Fitness, Health, Parents, Redbook, Seventeen, CosmoGirl, Ladies Home Journal, Prevention, American Photo, and many others!
Natalie MacNeil: Hi Stephanie! Tell me about Formerly Hot. Where did the name come from and what was your inspiration for the book?
Stephanie Dolgoff: The name started out as a joke. I felt like I was going through something but I couldn’t put my finger on what; I just felt weird, but everything was fine in my life. The only thing I could think of was that I wasn’t considered a “hot” girl anymore, which I had been for most of my life. I didn’t know what I was, but I knew what I wasn’t any longer: considered hot. So I joked to a friend that I should start a blog called Formerly Hot. The name alone was just too funny not to follow up on.
NM: Many women have a fear of aging. How did you let go of that fear?
SD: By laughing at it, and by realizing that there’s nothing to fear: Things are actually SO MUCH BETTER on this side of young. You’re more confident, you could care less what most others think of you, you’re better at your work, you feel better about your body, sex is better, relationships are better. I’m so much happier now than when I was a much less secure younger person (and not incidentally, looked closer to the ideal). Would I love to be me now and be “hot” again? Sure, but women our age are a different kind of hot, a more enduring, sincere kind of hot.
NM: You’ve written for many of the top magazines for women and have no doubt heard about almost every worry a woman could possibly have. What three things worry women the most in your opinion and what advice do you have for living worry-free?
SD: It depends on their age, but generally I’d say their bodies, their children and getting cancer.
I don’t think living worry free is possible or even advisable. You don’t want to be paralyzed by worry, but being aware enough to know what’s coming down the pike isn’t a bad thing. It’s a matter of degree. I’d say that as long as your worry translates to action (you exercise, take better care of your body, get your screenings and pay attention to your kids) then that’s OK. But once you’ve done what you can, put your feet up and have a glass of wine because life is too freakin’ short to spend it on pointless worry.
NM: What is a day like “in your heels?”
SD: In my flats, more likely. I have a hard time in heels these days unless they’re platforms or high-heeled clogs. NOT WORTH THE PAIN! I prep my girls for school or camp, feed them, rush them out the door, hit the gym, answer emails, make my to-do list and plow through it. On a good day I have a lunch or something fun and social to do, and then it’s looking at my to-do list and wondering why I didn’t get more done. I shop reflexively everywhere I go. I make it home and hang out with my girls some more, and zone out to Facebook or Mad Men or whatever else. I try to make sure I get some social blow-off time in every day. Otherwise I get crabby.
NM: Thanks Stephanie! And at She Takes on the World we think you’re HOT -minus the formerly.
Stephanie’s book can be purchased here.