Would you believe us if we told you that 9 out of 10 women are dissatisfied with their appearance? With summer on the horizon, cue mass panic for fear of not being “bikini body ready” or having a socially acceptable body type. What’s more, 1 in 3 women will spend on average 3-8 hours per day thinking about parts of their bodies that they dislike. Everyday people miss out on experiences, opportunities and LIFE because they don’t think they look good enough to do so.
We are made to feel like loving our bodies is a rebellious act- how could we possibly feel comfortable in our skin this summer? The media and consumer industries have conditioned us to fear our bodies and think of them as flawed and, imperfect- but we are keeping these industries in business by buying into their beliefs and falling victim in to these messages. This summer, instead of trying to “fix what is broken” let’s start looking not only at what we can accept, but LOVE about ourselves.
- EMBRACE EVERYTHING
Self-acceptance which is not focusing on trying to eliminate what we don’t like, but start embracing what we do like and accept, embrace the good with the the parts that you aren’t ready to accept right now. Eventually, the idea will be that this acceptance will allow you to accept ALL of you, remember the “bad” or “flawed” perceived parts of you, are only flaws by a damaging belief or social construct you have been exposed to.
- FILTER OUT THE NOISE
Be mindful of social media, the press and what you are exposed to. This time of year, the non-responsible parts of the beauty, cosmetic, fashion and wellness industry will be ripe with adverts reminding us ALL what is wrong with us, what we can change and how we can do so with their new product, regime or plan. Ask yourself, would you have been thinking about changing if you hadn’t seen this advertisement? Is body image really that important to me, or am I conditioned to think it is? These industries make money off our insecurities, spend the time and money on learning to appreciate and love you who are NOW.
- GET GRATEFUL
Remind yourself of all the incredible things your body can do, just because its summer and you are showing more flesh does not take away from the fact you are lucky to have a functioning able-bodied body! Every time you start to pick it apart, make a list of all the things you appreciate and feel grateful for about it, think of is from the inside out, remembering what it can do, not what it looks like.
- DO YOU
Be YOU and don’t avoid the shops, getting your favourite summer outfits on! Wear what makes you feel good, comfortable and confident! Treat yourself to some new summer pieces, go shopping with a supportive friend and curate your own style! For some that’s denim shorts and a vest top, for other ifs floaty dresses and maxi skirts, some even prefer wide leg trousers. Make sure this choice is for you, your confidence, style and wellbeing, not what you think or have been told is socially acceptable for your body!
- FIND YOUR TRIBE
Surround yourself with bopo babes, people that lift you up, support you and celebrate all body types, those people who will have fun in the sun with you because it’s a hot day and want to enjoy what life has to offer, not those who spend the whole day talking about dieting, body shapes and appearances.