I want to reach out to all women about body confidence and self-love, do you have a confident body image? In my world I am faced daily with women that constantly want to alter the way they look. I have trained women from the age of 15 to 65 and their language is all the same: “I hate my legs”, “I am so fat”, “I hate my tummy”, I hate I hate I hate I hate. I think you are getting the picture.
How can you get past the hate?
I have been suffering with this self-hatred myself for years. As a teenager and a ballerina, I was the only one in my ballet class with very short and muscly legs. I was reminded of that daily and that was when I started hating my legs. In my young adult life I never seemed to attracted men (in fact it was always me that had to make the first move) so I decided that I was obviously ugly.
In my married life I also complained to my husband regularly about the size of my ass!!!!
It’s so tiring isn’t it to think like this every day. It’s such an added pressure to our already very busy lives. Yet we all do it and I haven’t seen it stop yet.
I CHANGED MY HATE & STARTED LOVING MYSELF
I have worked on this since the beginning of my journey in the fitness and health business and I want to share with you some of my tips. Please please try to change too. Your life will be so much easier and happier but most of all healthier:
You can work on your body until every inch of it is toned, tanned, firm and fat-free. But if you don’t truly love yourself, it won’t count for much and you will still be unhappy about how you look.
There is undoubtedly a link between having a confident body image and eating disorders, negative body image is also associated with depression, anxiety, feelings of low self-esteem, failure and irritability. That’s a high price to pay for being at war with your body!
The body beautiful
We’ve probably all spied a woman walking down the street, turning every man’s head as she passes. We may not think that she is particularly attractive, but if she feels good about herself, she will ooze body confidence and sex appeal. How we see ourselves is not a reality, but an illusion. Your confident body image exists only in our mind’s eye, and it changes from moment to moment. That’s why you can feel ‘fatter’ ten minutes after eating a slice of cake, when in actual fact you couldn’t possibly look any different. Accepting this, is an important first step in becoming more body confident. You could then try the following exercises, which will also help you on your way to boosting your body image.
Become more familiar with your body – for example by looking at your body in the mirror after you’ve had a shower – and focus on aspects of yourself that you like. Acknowledging something you like about your body will shift the emphasis away from the bits you may not like. Also, reflect not only on the parts of your body that you like, but on why you like those bits as well. This will help to challenge your thought processes on what makes someone beautiful or acceptable.
Be alert to your ‘bad body’ triggers
What makes you feel bad about your body? I suggest trying to identify your triggers, so that you can rationalise why you feel bad when such situations arise.
If, for example, seeing your ex-partner’s new girlfriend always makes you feel bad, acknowledge that and tell yourself you are the same person – and that you’re the same size as you were five minutes before you spotted the other girl! Many simple triggers, such as using a communal changing room at the gym or in a store, can also be easily avoided if you continue to feel bad in those situations.
Open your eyes
When you feel negative about your body, you tend to only spot those around you who you perceive as being ‘better’ than you. So, open your eyes and really see everyone – and then you’ll realise just how many shapes and sizes there are!
A final point…
I am not saying that exercise and eating well is not necessary. It is still a necessity for a healthier happier life. BUT if you also work on the inside then your body will stop being the enemy and become your ally.