Loving my body as I see it in the mirror today; this concept has been a hard one for me. Personally, I’ve been a lot of different sizes and I’ve struggled with my weight and body image for more than half my life.
I realized that I spent a lot of my life just passing time, hoping that by the next birthday, or vacation, or school year, I’d be in a better place with my weight and then self-acceptance and loving my body would naturally flow right there in the dressing room, when I would finally fit into that romper I’ve been coveting forever.
As you can see, I have quite the imagination. Not only is that imagery holding me back, it’s not healthy for my body and my mind. It didn’t work, and it created a vicious cycle that never ended well or propelled me forward.
So while I work on my body every day, and while I don’t want to be the size I am – I can still practice loving my body the way it is right this minute.
If you feel the same way about your body due to weight, any pregnancy-related changes, or scars of any kind – I hear you. I think the first thing we need to do is know that there is a community of people who feel the same way. It’s not that you need acceptance from others so you can accept yourself – it’s that you need to know you’re in good company so that you can start to peek out from behind the curtain and do the work.
I want to share with you some tips that have made it so I can practice loving my body today, while keeping my eye on the prize of a body I want tomorrow.
Identify the triggers. Spending a few days with an open mind and figuring out what your triggers are will make a huge difference in how you feel about yourself. Does social media trigger you to compare yourself to others and make you feel like you’re coming up short? Is there a particular Instagram account that makes you feel badly? Once you’ve recognized what it is, take a break and see how you feel when you don’t consume that. I am willing to bet it will reduce the likelihood of being triggered to feeling negative about your body.
Take a compliment, girl! We are forever throwing back compliments that people give us. “Oh, I just love your hair today!” someone might say. More often than not, I hear women replying to that with an “Ugh, it drives me nuts and I need to get it cut still and I saw a grey hair yesterday…” Sister, no! Say thank you, and give them a compliment back. It will elevate your mood and get you into the habit of accepting compliments. If you don’t think they are true, all the more reason to accept the compliment.
Surround yourself with positivity. Let’s Marie Kondo the crap out of the things you are wearing that really don’t make you feel good. If you are just wearing it because it covers you up or a part of you that you don’t love today – then it’s not serving you. I encourage you to look for a couple of pieces that make you feel good and accentuate your favorite parts. Part of our mission at The Nelson Company is to source pieces that fit every size and shape beautifully. We just know you will feel like being hugged all day long in our soft, flattering tees. We love your body as you are today, and tomorrow too!
Move for like 10 minutes. I know this advice is everywhere, but I’m going to change it up a bit. I want you to move around for 10 minutes, whatever that looks like – cleaning out a closet, dancing, taking a walk, doing a yoga pose – and concentrate on your heart beating. Concentrate on your muscles and how they are moving and stretching to accommodate you. Stay in those moments, count your heart beats as they rapidly go by. You are alive, you are breathing (however hard) and you are important. Revel in how it feels to use the body you were given. I know for a fact that if you don’t appreciate what you have now, you won’t be able to appreciate it later, either. When you’re done, I think you might love your body a little more for getting you through that!
What are some insecurities you have around your body as it is today? How do you accept yourself and love your body today?