Surround yourself with positive images and people
The media plays a huge role in affecting our body image, constantly pushing unrealistic beauty standards to cash in on the low self-esteem of others. If there isn’t something we are insecure about, then there isn’t anything they can sell to us. The beginning of my body positivity journey started with following a bunch of blogs of body positive babes who basically put their middle fingers up and said “fuck these beauty standards”. It was truly life changing to see beautiful, unapologetic humans of diverse body types and backgrounds that embraced their bodies. Some are my favorite body positive ladies are pictured below.
The human body is beautifully glorious. Learn to be comfortable naked around yourself. Read a good book while naked, sleep naked, watch Netflix naked, look at yourself in the mirror naked and find the things you like about your body. Explore your body (yes…) and know every curve.
Hang out in lingerie or your undies
Nothing makes me feel myself more than a new lingerie set. Take photos in them. Hang out with your best friend and drink wine them (shout out to my best friend that makes her phone wallpaper photos of me in lingerie). Throw a ladies lingerie party (wine, pizza, and a boudoir photo shoot, anyone? yes that happened).
Stop comparing yourself to others
You don’t have to be pretty like her. Be pretty like you. It is all a competition that none of us agreed to. Once you stop focusing on what you lack, you can extend your energy into something more positive.
Stop saying negative things about your body
I’m a self-deprecating bastard so this has been a struggle for me and criticisms about myself do slip out from time to time, but I’m still a work in progress. We are almost trained to see the flaws in ourselves so whenever you say a negative thing about your body, follow it up with two things you like about yourself (ie “I think my thighs are big BUT they are strong AF and they can probably crush your head if you mess with me.”).
Stop saying negative things about anyone else’s body
When you judge someone based on their appearance it does not define them, it defines you and your insecurities. Regardless of shape, size, etc. all bodies deserve respect and don’t need unsolicited comments or advice from others. Be open-minded and nonjudgmental to cultivate a positive space and mindset for yourself and others.
Practice self care
Self care is different for everybody. Self care is anything positive I do for my mind, body, and soul. Here is a list of my favorite self care things I do for myself:
- listen to music
- play the drums
- declutter my room
- go to the gym
- pet my cat
- go on a trip
- take a bubble bath
- wrap myself in a soft blanket like a human burrito and read
Don’t use exercise as punishment
Please don’t look at a slice of pizza and think of how many push ups you have to do to burn it all off because it sucks the joy out of both things. Instead focus on the ways that physical activity can make you love your body even more. Is strengthening your muscles and heart punishment? No. Then don’t treat it like it is. Find ways to make exercise fun, whether it is heading to the gym with a group of friends, taking a dance class, or dressing up as your favorite character during a run!
sidenote: I am aware that some people cannot exercise due to disabilities or just have so much stuff going on that they cannot make exercise a priority. You still still very much worthy of self love and a positive body image.
Share the love
Compliment others when you can. Spread good vibes. Lift other women up. Encourage people to love their bodies. Inspire others!
Realize you are more than your appearance
Compliments like “you look beautiful today!” or “your eyeliner is sharp enough to kill a man” or “you dress like an earth goddess” are hella rad, but we are so much more than our looks. When you compliment someone’s intelligence, sense of humor, or drive we shift the importance of outward beauty to other aspects of a human being that make them unique and truly beautiful.