Body positive and self esteem issues are a massive part of our lives, and there are many subtle nuances for each individual. This topic is not a cookie cutter, one size fits all, type of thing. It’s a combination of societal pressures, how you were raised, and your general viewpoint of YOU and how you treat yourself. My goal here is to help you digest what is best for YOU, the small subtle aspects that shape who you are.
The one thing I do know that works for all people, is that taking the time to see yourself through the eyes of investing in the whole health of you, will take you to new heights of well being. So, invest in yourself. These tips or small changes can help change your whole mindset to live YOUR best life!
Another thing I do know for sure is that your body is beautiful just the way you are!
Throughout the years of being a massage therapist (as of rewriting this blog I’m at 26 years) I have seen MANY body types. Let me tell you, they (you) are all beautiful.
And since I believe in keeping this real, for myself and especially for you. The negative aspect I grew up with, and can still suffer from, is feeling that I am stupid, fat and ugly. Yikes, that’s harsh and I do it to myself.
All of the negative talk
What I have heard throughout the years of what people don't like about themselves
· Too fat
· Too tall
· Too short
· Too many pimples
· My parents didn't like me
· I have uneven eyebrows
· My skin is rough
· My brother was better than me at sports
· I have scars from surgeries
· I have sun damage
· Unfortunately, I could go on, but I will leave it at this.
How to shift the negative with small steps into the positive
The big physical one is not liking what you see in the mirror, whether that is related to your weight, your skin, your height, or any number of ‘faults’ we see in ourselves.
If you don’t like what you see in the mirror - make some easy changes.
Tip - Only do these examples when you are feeling more on the decent side of yourself. If you are having one of those days when you feel totally horrible about the way you look, then avoid looking in the mirror.
If you don't like what you see in the mirror:
· Don't look in the mirror. Honestly, don’t look. If you do look, then only look when you know you will feel better about what you see. Like when you are fully dressed. The idea here is to only see good in yourself.
· Use a lower lighting when you do look at yourself unclothed, or even when you are clothed.
When you like what you see in the mirror just a bit more:
· Up that lighting level and look at yourself more, the bits you know you like.
· Try looking at yourself with a smaller amount of clothing on.
· Smile when you look, that always helps.
Overall, tips to help ya rock it:
· Exercise a little more. Nothing major, just a bit more. Maybe a walk after dinner, start with 15 minutes every night.
· Change the internal dialog you have with yourself. Check out the affirmations below.
· If you wouldn’t say it to your kids, don’t say it to yourself. Would you tell your kid “You’re ugly,” or “You have such a fat stomach”...the way we talk to ourselves changes the way we think of ourselves.
· Appreciate what you have, focus on the good bits!
· Know that you are strong and lovable.
· Raise your kids to feel good about themselves. If your kid says they are ugly, hug them and guide them to their beauty with your words. “Look at how strong your arms are.” “I am so happy to be your mom/dad.”
· Raise your kids to be kind to all people.
· Have an overall healthy lifestyle.
Now for little tips to all of the other negative views people have
Too fat - The above info will help with this one.
Too tall - Honestly, there is nothing physically you can do about this. You are tall! Stand strong and in your command presence! Now, there are some ways to wear clothes that can help.
1. Skinny jeans and bright patterned tops.
2. Find a couple of big, super bold accessories.
3. Waist length jackets can help to give you distinction between the top and bottom parts of your body.
4. Keep shorter skirts right above your knees.
5. Love wearing maxi dresses.
6. Keep clothing simple and wear your height with a confident smile.
Too short - Same as being too tall, nothing physically can be done (have I been seeing some radical surgeries for this?). You are short! Stand strong and in your command presence! Here are some clothes that can help.
1. Cropped tops add to your silhouette.
2. Wrap dresses are better for most than a shirt dress.
3. Sleek blazers with suit pants are amazing.
4. Vertical stripes work well.
5. Watch out for oversized tops, try fitted tops.
6. Mini skirts work far better with your height. I can speak to this, as I am short. Mini skirts on me make my legs look long, long, long.
Too many pimples
1. Look to your diet first. Fresh fruits and veggies are in order for you.
2. Lightweight moisturizers filled with grapefruit and aloe vera.
3. Regular cleansing of your skin, morning and night. Ensure that it is a cleanser that will not strip your skin of all of its oils. A cleanser with a witch hazel or an aloe vera base is a good place to start.
4. Ask for expert help. I’m here for you!
My parents didn't like me - This is an emotional or mind barrier we have.
1. Decide if you need to talk with them anymore. Really, if they don’t like you, start with that decision.
2. If you do need to remain in contact with them, do it on your terms. This way you are the one in control of your dealings with them.
3. Like yourself, don’t let their treatment of you continue to hurt your view of yourself.
I have uneven eyebrows
1. First off, know that your brows are sisters not twins.
2. Look into getting them tattooed or tinted (one of my fav things to do for my clients). Or find your favorite brow pencil, there are so many different types now, I know you will find something that suits you.
My skin is rough or has sun damage
1. Every one of us has differences in our skin, whether it is colour, tone or texture. That’s how we are made.
2. Exfoliation, done properly, can help with texture and discolourations like sun damage.
3. SPF. Wear it!
My brother was better than me at sports
1. Does this matter? I’m not being mean here, I am being honest. Does it still matter? Identify that, then it will be easier to move forward.
2. Do you love your brother? That can play a big role in whether or not you can move forward with a relationship.
3. Let go of your ego. Yes, allow this to pass. It is a state of consciousness, one that is not serving you in being your best form of YOU. Check out the book ‘Waking Up’ by Sam Harris
I have scars from surgeries or injuries
1. Massage oils into them - jojoba and camellia oils are beneficial. I am happy to show you how to work on your scar tissue.
2. Embrace them as a new part of your beauty.
If you don’t struggle with a poor body image then … lucky you!!
· Keep it up.
· Share this info with someone that you know has a hard time.
· Let them know how much they matter, just as they are. Give them actionable verbiage. Like, “I like that colour on you.” “Seeing you smile makes me happy.”
· Share with me how you do it, so I can share with those that I guide on a daily basis.
Love and joy are ways to shift your consciousness into ones of care and grace for yourself.
1. Smile, really it helps.
2. Saying ‘thank you’ as part of your daily tune.
And for me. Helping you is how I feel better about myself. This, this right here is my therapy. Seeing you thriving and having a positive outlook, this is what guides me to new levels of positiveness in myself.
I am always looking at guiding you into the best for your body, mind and spirit. Because to only look at one aspect does not bring about health for the whole. Your whole being is what matters. Little bits and pieces is what will help you in life. Start small, gather speed and then roll down the hill free of fear, in confidence, and knowing your purpose.
Care for yourself, care for the environment, care about your neighbour.
· “Daily, I see myself as healthy and dynamic.”
· “My body radiates vitality.”
· “Every aspect of my thinking, appearance and actions are filled with loving strength.”
· “My body, mind and spirit knows the true beauty I have within.”
Put these on a piece of paper then put it on your fridge or on the bathroom mirror. Carry the paper with you.
Write them down in your favorite app on your phone.
Any time you are feeling doubtful, say the above affirmations.
Now, go have faith in your decisions, trust in your capabilities, and be certain in the value you bring to those around you!
Here's to your awesome self :)