...and start loving the skin you're in!
By Emily Roberts, IATG ContributorMay 26, 2016
All of us have bashed our bodies at one time or another. Maybe you've looked in the mirror and thought "I hate my ____ (insert body part here)." Perhaps you saw an Instagram of a celebrity who's body is toned and filtered, causing you to compare your unfiltered self to hers. Bullying your body keeps you from feeling your best and totally depletes your self-esteem.
Hating on your body is toxic. This is the only body you've got so start taking care of it physically and mentally.
Think about this, the more you criticize yourself, the more depressed your mind becomes. What so many of us get wrong is that beating up ourselves doesn't motivate us; it stresses us out. Motivation doesn't come from criticism it comes from self-compassion and a desire to feel better. It may feel impossible to break the body bashing habit (it was for me), but the more I practiced the following tools, the happier and more accepting I became.
Begin to Love Your Body
1.When you stop and think about it your body does so much for you every day. Instead of focusing on what size you are or comparing yourself to someone else, really think about all your body has done for you today. Your legs got you out of bed, your eyes are allowing you to read this, your mind has done a million things to get you to this very moment. Focus on fueling your body with nourishing food and positive self-talk. You need your body to feel its best so you can achieve your goals in life.
2. Decide to feel good today. A number doesn't mean a thing to me anymore. A size is just a size, it doesn't make me happy or sad. I don't weigh myself, because a number doesn't define my self-worth, neither does yours. Instead of wasting energy on criticizing my body or my decisions, I began to focus on what feels good and fuels my soul. Focus on what you're passionate about, what you want more of in your life, not what you want to let go of or fix. I make a conscious decision each day to try and focus on what makes me feel happy and excited. This helps you focus on your higher purpose for the day, which has nothing to do with your weight or size.
3. Become friends with food. You know that food is there to taste good and fuel you, right? Instead of fighting with your body about what you "should" eat or do, accept that it needs food to survive. Treat it with respect; it does so much for you. Sure, too many sweets will make you feel uncomfortable, but ignoring your body’s needs and cravings will too. So eat what you love and do so in a way that makes your body feel happy, not crappy.
4. Get mindful of what isn't working. Become aware of what thoughts, situations, and people trigger your body bully to yell at you. Is it social media or a friend who always complains about her body? You can't avoid these things for good, but you can control how much time and energy you spend on them. So respect your body with positive thoughts and actions to help you feel motivated and powerful to follow your dreams. Start embracing your beautiful body. Remember, it's the only one you've got.
It’s time to show your body some love! Take some time to go on a walk, give yourself a compliment, or feed yourself some healthy food!
Emily Roberts is a licensed psychotherapist specializing in working with girls and women. Also known as The Guidance Girl , Emily has made it her career to help others feel confident in the skin they’re in. She and her dog fluffy dog Milo split their time between the busy streets of New York City and Austin, Texas. You can reach out to Emily on her Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.