How To Get The Body You Love - NOW!
Here’s the super long-kept secret that nobody tells you about on how to get the body you love - RIGHT NOW. Decide today - not when you’ve “lost the weight”, not when you exercise five times a week, not when you have cut out all “naughty” carbs and not when you fit back into those jeans - decide today, that you are worthy and that your body is worthy of love. Love it now, when it’s worked tirelessly for you at your job, when you drag it to the gym, when it moves in all the ways your brain tells it to and when it performs … even after all of the mistreatment it’s been through. Our minds and our bodies can certainly work in opposing ways, your body is always going to hang in there for you, but without your help it can only do so well and is only so resilient.
So love it now and love it today.
How? You might ask. Well, that’s the hard part. There is no switch to make it happen. Unfortunately, you don’t just wake up one day and somehow your relationship with your true self and your body is healed. I wish I could tell you otherwise, but getting to a place where you can say you truly love who you are, and that your body is also worthy of love… that’s going to take time, and work.
The way we see ourselves can be tied up into so many things. And it’s not just the shape of our body that can upset us, but features that we don’t deem acceptable.
For my whole life, I’ve avoided people seeing my naturally curly, frizzy and rebellious hair. I can pin point so many moments in time where my desire for straight and silky hair (like on the commercials) actually overpowered my ability to enjoy the moment. How crazy is that, the style of my HAIR made me feel different and unworthy. I would do anything I could to tame it and make it look similar to everyone else’s. It’s only recently I can see how ridiculous this was, and that many people dream of having this curl and volume (grass is always greener - #amiright). But I had to get there on my own. Just as we all have to take that journey of self discovery to understand who we really are, and that who we really are is so much more than the way our body looks on the outside.
When all we throw at ourselves is negative, we begin to only see negative - it’s now our default and our mind can jump there in an instant. I had such disgust for my curls that I’d get self conscious and anxious when I was going to social events, especially if I was pressed for time and couldn’t straighten my hair properly. When we have a negative idea of ourselves, whether it’s our extra weight, cellulite, stretch marks, skin conditions (all the things that society has told us aren’t worthy of love).. We struggle to see anything beyond that.
Of course, we all have moments where we aren’t happy with ourselves for one reason or another. And we shouldn’t feel shame about feeling this way either. Our feelings are absolutely valid, but when they impact the way we communicate with our partner, interact with friends or show up at work, we’ve got a bigger issue at hand. Remember, it’s an external notion that you’re not suppose to have belly rolls, or ‘love handles’, it’s an external notion that you need to have flawless skin and zero stretch marks. We hold on so hard to our aesthetics. Now don’t get me wrong, having pride in what you look like is totally cool (I’ll rock my skinny jeans and pumps just as hard as anyone), but allowing these aesthetics to define your sense of self worth and value is where it becomes dangerous. I feel just as fierce and fabulous in baggy sweats and day 4 of dry-shampoo as I do all ready to go out on a Saturday night. BOTH are me, BOTH are worthy of love and respect.
So, finding yourself in a torrential downpour of self-shame and pity (Girlfriend, let me tell you, we have all been there). Well, here are some first steps you can take to flip that internal dialogue and shift your mindset.
First of all, you need to have a support system. Know what things can trigger your negative self talk and set you off on a bit of a spiral. Do some friends drown you in their negative body image talk so you join in? Or perhaps it’s trying on that pair of shorts from three summers ago that you love, but cannot fit into. Think about how you can change these interactions. An easy one is throwing out the goddamn shorts! Were you more awesome and funny and brilliant and smart when you could fit into those shorts? Um, no. Did you love yourself 100% then and was your life 100% on track? Unlikely. Quit trying to be “that girl” again, it ain’t doing you any favours. So stop looking back - you’re not going that way.
We tend to fear what we do not know. And understandably so, we’re conditioned to think that way. But that fear has the ability to gain complete control over our actions and paralyse us if we let it. Many people plead ‘laziness’ as their explanation for how they ended up in the position they are in today… overweight, unhappy and heading in the direction of serious health problems. How do we let ourselves get here? Let me tell you another secret - It’s not laziness. It’s the fear of the unknown. There is comfort in doing the same thing again and again, where you know the outcome for certainty. And if you continue down the same path you always have, it’s easier to navigate what the future will bring. We may not like where we’re heading but at least we know it right?
It takes a shit-load of courage to tell yourself that you’re not going to allow it to continue any longer. And it’s going to take a lot of love for yourself through that transition process. Change doesn’t come easy, it’s not linear, and there’s no finite end point. This goes for just about every area of life. It isn’t just for individuals who may need to re-evaluate their eatings habits and relationship with food. This applies to the woman who is unchallenged in her workplace, or the woman who is tired of the relentless crap she’s getting from her boss. The woman that ends most nights with a bottle of wine and a few cigarettes or the woman who is with her abusive partner because she’s afraid of being alone. Stop allowing these things to happen to you. Believe you are worthy of more, simply because YOU SAID SO. And I hate/love to break it to you, but your opinion of yourself is the only one that well and truly matters. If you believe you are worthy of these circumstances, they will continue to occur. You hold all the power. So quit talking shit, and back yourself.
The world doesn’t need you to be a certain shape or size or have a specific hairstyle! We have enough Kardashian booty’s to last us a couple centuries, thanks. What the world needs (what YOU need) is you, being unapologetically yourself … and whatever that looks like is beautiful. Because it’s you. So cut yourself some slack in the aesthetics department, and focus on changing your internal dialogue. Life’s tough, and odds are we’re going to face challenges in our life that go far beyond cellulite, and having enough time to straighten our hair. So give yourself a damn compliment - would ya!? Oh and you have my permission to go out and treat yoself to a new pair of shorts - ones that you actually feel good in.
Photo Credit: @lizziesnowphotography @bodylovenz