I think self-love and body image is one of the most touchy and sensitive subjects to talk about these days. For some time in my teenage years when I was thinking about what I wanted to do and I was going through my options, it quickly dawned on me that because of some rules that were decided by someone out there, I could never be a super model! I am petite and naturally curvy and unfortunately, girls like me are not allowed on the catwalk. But you know what, who cares what Hollywood thinks?
I have always been one of those people who doesn’t listen to people’s opinion about me; for me only God’s opinion matters, however, my own opinion of myself has more times than I would like to admit been very low. Countless times I have felt less than pretty, disliked my body (and hair), felt like I wasn’t gifted enough and so on and so forth. My biggest problem wasn’t so much how I looked but the feelings of inadequacy.
So this one is for all of us girls who have hated our bodies and have let that hate keep us from being happy. Before I was aware (from reading it in Cosmo) that stretch marks were a bad thing, I used to wear my swimming costume around the pool and walk around oblivious and happy but the minute I found out that you should basically be ashamed of yourself if you even have a smidge of those contour lines I became very self-conscious that now all my swimming costumes look like Bridget Jones’ knickers! haha
I think it’s time to deal with that shame and fear and embrace our bodies. Will we ever arrive at a point where we are 100% happy with every part of our body (Not even Joan Rivers was happy she said her face had been tucked it more times than the bed sheets at the holiday inn haha) probably not? But you know what, self-hate and body shaming does not help anyone. You have to be happy with the way you are and once you are happy and content, then you can begin to enjoy life. There’s no other way around this unfortunately, people can’t make you happy or make you feel confident, only you can do that. You have to finally reach that point where you decide to not compare yourself with anyone else, look within and decide ‘I CHOOSE HAPPY’
In his book, The Biology of Belief, Bruce Lipton PHD explains how “we’ve been culturally programmed to believe that if we reach our goals (When we get into Havard, lose weight, get a high paying job e.t.c.), then we’ll be happy”. He adds that “this formula for happiness is inverted: happiness fuels success, not the other way round”. So it’s time to change how you believe, and how you see yourself subconsciously.
If you know me you know I love practical steps and a good action plan so here are some steps to get you there.
1.Be kind to yourself. When you are kind to yourself, you will not call yourself fat/ ugly/dumb and any other negative words. The process of being kind to yourself also means you DO NOT compare yourself with anyone else. For most of us, our bodies will change due to the different seasons of life so please don’t be hard on yourself when that happens. Give yourself grace.
2. Practice acceptance and self-love. You have to give yourself what you want other people to give you. If you want acceptance, you have to accept yourself first.
3. Make those voices in your head your best friends. You know that voice that’s always negative every time you look at yourself in the mirror control it and make it your best friend. Every time the voice says something negative, quickly switch it around and think/ say something positive. Don’t allow negative emotions and words to linger in your mind.
4. Surround yourself with uplifting words; This is a very practical step which I strongly advocate, have positive words in your room, dressing mirror, bathroom e.t.c I have written on my mirror the words ‘I am enough’ and ‘I’m loved’. On days when I am feeling less than enough, all I have to do is look at my mirror and those words instantly make me feel on top of the world again.
5. If there’s something you can do to change, do it. Going for a run makes me feel good about myself but I usually have to check my motives for doing it. going for a ran out of guilt just because I ate fries is not the way to do it. Remember guilt has to be out of the equation is you are to love yourself. Do things because you enjoy them and they make you feel good/ look good and because of its part of a healthy lifestyle.
6. Don’t meditate and dwell on the negative. If someone says to you ‘you’ve got a funny looking nose or you’ve put on weight and anything that makes you feel bad, reflect it back at them and ask them ‘are you trying to make me feel bad?’ This trick alone will save you from most negative people in your life. If some people are a big bowl of bad vibes and are always making you feel bad or constantly put you down, get rid of them. say what??? yeah, I mean it. Ain’t nobody gat time for negativity and bad vibes. Our goal is to be happy and enjoy our life!
The truth is, you don’t have to look a certain way to be happy and content. Happiness is a choice. Choose well.
“Positive thoughts are a biological mandate for a happy, healthy life.” Bruce H Lipton PHD
I love you all