Take a look in the mirror. What do you see?
If the answer is anything but an amazing person, then you might need to add body positivity to your life. This isn’t an uncommon reaction at all: Even the pretty girl in your science class who seems to have her life all figured out has some insecurities that she’s hiding.
Body positivity is "a social movement rooted in the belief that all human beings should have a positive body image, and be accepting of their own bodies as well as the bodies of others." And it's something we should all embrace. Why waste time focusing on the negative aspects of yourself when you can embrace who you are and love the body that you have?
Below are 6 simple ways that you can incorporate body positivity into your daily routine.
1. Talk yourself up in the mirror
Sometimes convincing yourself that you’re beautiful and worthy really is as easy as looking in the mirror and telling yourself that you are. Repeat your favorite compliment to yourself in the mirror or take the time to really feel it. Then spend a little time noticing all the beautiful parts of yourself. Don’t focus on how you think your nose may be too big or how you wish you didn't have acne, instead think about your beautiful eyes or smile. Take note of these things and remember them when you’re feeling down.
2. Add cute quotes to something you look at daily
Try adding inspiring quotes that make you happy to something that you interact with daily. This can be your bathroom mirror or a notebook.
I used to have a collage of my favorite quotes on my school binder and it made me happy to open it every day and think about the positive things in my life. It also inspired me to act like the person that the quotes talked about. One of my favorites is:
“Smile. You never know who is falling in love with it.”
This reminds me to be a cheerful person and see the best in myself and others.
Want some other quote suggestions? Here are some body positivity quotes from Goodreads and here are some self esteem and self love quotes.
3. Wear clothes that make you feel your best
You may be used to listening to fashion advice that tells you exactly what to wear and when. While it is important to dress appropriately for the situation, you should always wear whatever makes you feel the best. If wearing a skirt makes you feel better than wearing pants, then do it. If you’d much rather wear something with a higher neckline, do that. Develop your own personal style and dress like yourself. You will only be confident if you feel confident.
4. Don’t compare yourself
The absolute worst thing that you can do for your self image is to compare yourself to others. This is something that I struggle with daily, whether I'm comparing myself with a girl at a party or with someone who gets a higher grade than me on a test. However, I have found it helpful to think that they may also be comparing themselves to me. While we ideally shouldn’t be comparing ourselves to anyone (working on it!), sometimes it’s helpful to imagine that someone out there is wishing they had something that you have. Eventually, you’ll stop comparing yourself to others because you will recognize your uniqueness and good qualities.
5. Accept compliments
This can be so incredibly difficult to do but it’s important to accept compliments that you receive.
We’re so used to dismissing when we’re praised in an effort to stay humble but sometimes you just need to say thank you. Or even better, when you receive a compliment and accept it, say one back. If someone compliments your hair, tell them that you like their shoes or whatever it may be.
If you want to take it a step further, try complimenting people based on their personalities and actions rather than how they look on the outside. Arguing a compliment will only affect you negatively in the long run.
6. Indulge yourself
An important aspect of body positivity is to treat yourself well. Take extra care of yourself, both physically and mentally. You only have this one life so don’t waste it on things that aren’t making you feel better. Do whatever makes you feel best. Carve out the extra time to give yourself a pedicure. Don’t feel bad if you like to wear makeup or if you don’t. Stop noticing everything you don’t have and focus on what you do have. Once you see yourself as beautiful, everybody else will too.
Do you struggle with body positivity? What do you do to help yourself feel more beautiful? Let us know below!
Body positivity isn’t something that comes easily. As a society we are trained to compare ourselves to models or even worse, to the "highlight reel" lives we see on social media. But, that’s not the truth. Everyone struggles with their body at some point. With practice, body positivity can become your new way of looking at yourself -- and the world.