“I will look so much better if I had a flatter tummy.” “If only my butt were a little bigger, I’ll be perfect.” “I Hate the way my arms jiggle when I wave.” “Eww, look at my nasty back fat.”
As a personal fitness trainer, these are some of the statements I hear when I first sit with new clients for their initial evaluations. Being a female in the fitness industry, a mother, and a friend to many fabulous girlfriends, I have witnessed women, myself included, making disparaging remarks about our bodies many times. There is no denying the fact that as human beings we often have moments of self-doubt and self-shaming but, the amount of body image issues and lack of self-confidence that we struggle with as women is beyond belief.
Over the years, as I have progressed in my quest for self and body acceptance at any size (and there has been many sizes), I have come to realize that in order to improve on the parts of our bodies that we find imperfect or flawed, we must first acknowledge, accept, and love ourselves at that very moment and that very size with which we may not be happy. Like any other aspect of our lives, we cannot improve ourselves and bodies from a hate or negative start point. Love yourself enough at your current state to make the changes you deem acceptable. As a mother and teacher, I compare this to disciplining our children. We discipline children, not from a hateful perspective, but rather, from a loving and caring place. So while the child’s current behavior might not be up to par with what we expect, our love for them does not change at that instant. We continue to love while helping change the negative behavior.
Ladies, it is time to start loving and caring for our bodies NOW, while we work on future improvements.!
Here are some tips to keep in mind on your journey to loving the skin you’re in NOW.
- You are not alone in your feelings- For years, women have struggled with self-image issues. It is and has been part of our history for many years.
- Understand that no one is perfect- Yes, even fitness models and celebs have moments of body shaming! What might seem perfect to you on someone else could just be an illusion.
- Don’t be fooled by the “filters”- With the craze of social media and “fitness models” on the internet, we tend to compare and criticize ourselves based on what we see. Please know that your real life cannot be filtered. Own your REALNESS DARLING!
- Focus on your fabulousness- While you might not be over the moon with the way your midsection or your thighs looks today, there are other aspects of you that are fabulous. FOCUS on that smile that lights up the room when you enter. How about the flawless skin that makes some people want to “skin and wear you”? Oh! And those strong toned legs? The list goes on!
- Set small goals towards your ultimate goal- You cannot improve your body overnight. It takes time and effort. Make small changes daily. Example: If your goal is to cut out sugar completely and exercise 1 hour a day, start by cutting out one sugar content food daily, and work your way up to weekly and so forth. Break your exercise up into smaller time periods if you have limited time.
- Take realistic steps to body improvement- Do not become a victim to the quick fixes on the market. There is no shortcut to a healthy and fit lifestyle. With the influx of “cleanses”, “wraps”, and “diets” out there, it is easy to succumb to the pressure. Remember, quick fix = quick let down. Do not put yourself through the cycle of weight loss insanity. DO IT THE RIGHT WAY SO IT CAN STICK AND BECOME A LIFESTYLE!
We all have flaws, ladies. Learning to embrace and love ourselves now, even with the flaws, will allow us to make the changes we want to see in the future. LOVE YOURSELF THROUGH THE PROCESS!