If you haven’t heard this today then let me be the one to remind you that you are BEAUTIFUL! When was the last time you looked in the mirror and liked what you saw? When was the last time you looked at your body and appreciated everything that it did for you?
It’s been a long time for me too and that is why I went on this journey to improve my body positivity. I didn’t just wake up one day and decide to love myself. NO SIR!! Loving yourself after a period of time of putting yourself down is a very hard journey but it is TOTALLY doable! Here are 10 ways that helped me improve my body positivity!
Appreciate What Your Body Does For You
I read this article a few years ago that said some people believe that our bodies are transportation for our minds and they really don’t matter. I believe that is the farthest thing from the truth. Our bodies do so many wonderful things for us that we take for grated. Our bodies help us breathe, hug our loved ones, fight off infections, jump into the pool on a hot summer’s day. There are so many things that our bodies are doing for us. The next time you start feeling bad about your body list some things that you couldn’t do without it!
A few nights ago I felt very low about my body. I felt gross and lumpy and I projected that on the way I saw myself. Instead of feeling bad about myself, I went over the the mirror at the foot of my bed. I looked at myself and became familiar with what my body ACTUALLY LOOKS LIKE. Sometimes we have this morphed image of our bodies in our heads that is far from the truth.
Now, this might be something out of your comfort zone but TRUST ME it works! The next time you get out of the shower or change clothes and you have a full length mirror around you, I want you to look at yourself. It might be hard at first if you are not used to looking at your body but try anyway. When you are looking at yourself become aware of your body.
- What does it look like?
- What does it feel like?
- Did you learn anything?
So the next time you start feeling like you have a low body image just stand in front of the mirror and show yourself the reality of your body. You are beautiful. Imperfections and all!!
Keep a List of Everything That You Love About Yourself
This seems like a very simple concept but trust me it helps. In those moments where you don’t feel good about yourself, your body, or where you are going in life, it is good to have a reminder of our strengths. Take out a piece of paper or a sticky note and write down 3-10 things that you like about yourself. PLOT TWIST! These things cannot have anything to do with your physical appearance. Examples could be:
- I have a natural talent for showing empathy to others.
- I am really good at dancing, singing, and being creative!
- I am super intelligent and do well in school.
- I have a great taste in music!
To those people who I am going to see down in the comments saying “Kristen, I don’t like anything about myself…” or “Kristen, I am unworthy of love…” we both know that these thoughts are not true. There are so many wonderful things about yourself and you can do yourself a favor and recite them everyday. You don’t have to write all these positive attributes down now but when you find yourself saying “Damn, I’m really good at this!” take out your piece of paper and write it down!!
Surround Yourself With Positive People
When I was in high school all of my friends were obsessed with their weight. This was a very toxic environment for me to be in because the more times I heard them talking about their weight the more I felt like I was not enough. I started to be very hard on myself because I had other people in my life telling me that what I wore and how I looked was wrong and I desperately tried to change it.
Surround yourself with body positive people if you are able to. Being around these types of people can motivate and inspire you to become more body positive. If the people around you are not body positive then educate and motivate them to be. I once lived with someone who believed that she had to be on a diet to be healthy and would always put herself down. I would shower her with kindness and motivation to make a lifestyle change and reward her body with healthy foods rather than shame her body and eat “diet” foods.
Turn Your Negative Thoughts Into Positive Thoughts
Have you ever said to yourself…I’m not pretty enough, everyone is looking at me, why can’t I be like those actors on TV? Me too! I think it’s completely normal to have these thoughts because we have been surrounded by media telling us that we are obsolete. What I like to do when I start having these negative thoughts is to turn them into a positive. Example: I’m not perfect. Turn that into: No one is perfect and I am beautiful just the way I am. I know it sounds cheesy but trust me the more times you practice this and become mindful of the things we are telling ourselves the easier it will be to change them.
Wear Clothes that Make YOU Feel Beautiful
When I was doing research for this blog post, a lot of other people were saying to wear clothing that compliments your body. I say….NOPE! Don’t wear clothing because society tells you it “compliments” your body. Wear clothing that YOU feel confident and comfortable in. If you want to wear a crop top then by all means you go and ROCK that crop top. You are beautiful regardless of what kinds of garments you put on your body. Use clothing as a way to express your unique personality!
Be Aware of Your Social Media Consumption
Hey you. Yes, YOU! Do you hate yourself? Do you wish your body looked like those photoshopped models in the magazines? Well buy my product and you can INSTANTLY have the perfect body, hair, face, weight, style, etc.
These are the slogans and tag lines that we are being sold everyday by makeup, clothing, skincare, fitness, and nutrition companies. Open your eyes and become aware of the products and brands that you surround yourself with. What are their messages? Did you buy their product because they promised to make you healthier, thinner, prettier, or more successful than the others?
The models in the magazines you read everyday are photoshopped beyond recognition. The editors take the normal pictures of the models and edit them down to something that is not humanly possible to obtain (without plastic surgery). When you finally realize that you are surrounded by these images the easier it will be to become aware of the messages that the media is sending you.
Throw Away the Crap!
Now that you have opened your eyes to what you are consuming it’s time to throw it all away! Throw away anything that makes you feel bad about yourself. Maybe it is that magazine you look at with unobtainable images on it or maybe it is that small pair of sweatpants that you are working on fitting into. Unsubscribe from creators on social media platforms that have a toxic message and replace them with others that have your own values. Throw away anything that is not body positive and replace them with things that make you feel amazing!!
It’s OK Not To Feel OK
It’s okay to not feel okay all of the time. We are HUMANS and sometimes we don’t feel our best. Our bodies go through a lot of changes throughout the week and it’s perfectly normal to feel down about yourself. Don’t let these thoughts consume you. Whenever you start feeling down about yourself evaluate why and try to change the situation.
It’s okay to treat yourself once in a while. I was talking to a good friend of mine the other day about how she is going to treat herself after graduation. She said she bought herself a ticket to a marathon that she plans on running this summer. I thought that was the COOLEST way to treat yourself. Treating yourself does not have to be with food or shopping for new clothes but you can treat yourself to EXPERIENCES! Find something you have always wanted to do and DO IT! For me I am going to treat myself by buying a gym membership and learning how to cook some simple healthy meals! I am very excited about it!!
In the comments down below please let me know how you plan to treat yourself this week!