You don’t have to jump from hating your body to full blown body love in minutes. If you decide that you wanna get a bit more body confident (you do, by the way, because it will change your freaking life, for the better) then give yourself a break and do it in small steps.
If you are like me when I started thinking about all this, then you are in far too deep with too many bad habits to break free of that negative mind set in a split second. No way could I flip over to the bright beautiful body confident side ‘just like that’.
Why not try and focus on the middle ground first: body neutrality, then work your way up to full blown ‘I think my body is incredible- just look!’ sorta confidence.
These steps may seem small and you may think: “Gah- don’t be silly- I want the CONCLUSION!” But each one of these small steps could make a HUGE wave in your life. READ:
Stop saying negative things about your body out loud. The more you are consciously not saying them, you’ll notice the thoughts stop popping into your head. End that vicious self critical voice. Tell it to back down. BACK DOWN.
Tacked on to point number 1 above: Don’t join in the conversation when your pals start up with their crap self hate body chat. Just keep shtum. Doesn’t mean you tell them that they should stop doing it too (maybe one day you can suggest it, when you want them to get on the body love train too), just means you become a conscientious objector. Being one of them is real cool and pretty powerful. Maybe your pals will notice…
Again tacked on to the 2 points above. Every time a negative thought about your body does come into your head (which you don’t say out loud), take 2 seconds to find something amazing about your body to follow it up. Thank it for keeping you alive, thank your legs for taking you from A to B, thank your eyes for letting you see beauty, your ears for helping you listen to tunes, your lungs for breathing, your hair for looking bloody amazing, your teeth for helping you eat, your tongue for helping you taste, your fat for keeping you warm, your nails for letting you paint them. There will always be something you can counteract a crappy thought with. This is an awesome habit: DROWN THE BASTARDS (negative thoughts).
Look in the mirror and start to be realistic about your body. No more horrible angry words like ‘ugly’ or ‘gross’. Start describing your body realistically and neutrally. My belly is round, my tits are different sizes, my skin is soft, rough, looks angry. My hair is thin, my butt is flat, my thighs are dimpled, my knees are hairy. Really look at it, it is yours, nobody else’s. All yours. I used to disassociate myself from my belly cause I didn’t like it. I never properly looked at it. Now I claim it. It is mine, only mine. I know what it looks like and yeah, it may be larger than some people’s but it is mine. “Hey belly, yeah you, you are round and a bit jiggly and you let me eat the food I love and you are all mine. Thanks pal.” I hadn’t realised how the ‘idea’ of my tummy was so different to reality. Starting to be realistic about my body changed what I saw. (This is weird but works. Promise.)
Follow some body positive/ confident people on the socials you like. (like me @chachipowerproject) and un-follow the body and health and fitness shamers who just make you feel totally rubbish for not looking the way they do. Ugh. DELETE.
Put up some cute little reminders (like we gave out at Chachi Live) around your home. Stick one on your mirror so when you wake up in the morning and look groggily back at yourself you are reminded that you are smoking hot, or beautiful, or fabulous. Let that sink right into your unconscious every single day. How about this one: “You are good enough”. That’s my one… it applies to every single one of you too.
This may be easier for some more than others but I’m including it because it is the single most important piece of information which changed my life and opened up this world which was so far away from being a possibility a few months ago. Take a moment and recognise this: what makes you human is who you are, it is what you say, it is what you do for other people and what you can create for this f-ed up world. What makes you a good human being (I presume that’s what you want to be) is absolutely nothing to do with what your face or body look like. Yeah we think we are judged for what we look like and we can get angry or nervous or upset about that. That’s what pulls down our self confidence but bloody hell… you are up to something WAY bigger than some other woman or man passing judgement on your body. You have your own life to live and all the amazing stuff that goes along with that. What the f*** do they know anyway? They’ve been brought up in a toxic culture (we all have). Feel sorry for them that they haven’t got better things to do. Like Michelle Elman said at #ChachiLive 2017: It’s a choice. You get to choose your happiness over some (bullshit) momentary thought that someone else has had and maybe uttered.
Humans have the habit of making words mean an awful lot. One word can cause a lifetime of pain. But a lot of the time we don’t realise: We get to choose that pain or we get to choose our happiness. I encourage you to choose your happiness.
Meetup: #ChachiCollective Body Positive Advocates in Scotland
Flipboard: Body Image Magazines