Body positivity is still a buzzword in today’s world, even though the beauty industry is packaging it as a new way to spend your money on “fixing” yourself and you still spend mornings picking apart your body like you’re one of the Plastics from Mean Girls.
But you want to love your natural self, you just don’t know how. When it comes to other people, you’re totally body-positive, but you’re having some trouble bringing that back home. Well, here are 7 steps to start loving yourself for exactly who and how you are.
1. Practice self-love
Sometimes the only way to do it is to, well, do it. Skip the gym just because you’re tired. Forgive yourself for the second donut. Remember that you’re only human.
2. Accept compliments
It’s easy to brush off the nice things people say to us. Practice saying “thank you” instead.
3. Compliment yourself
Start being nice to yourself. Feel unapologetically good in the new outfit you’ve been nervous about trying, or look at yourself in the mirror and list three things you like every morning. Be kind to yourself.
4. Smash the patriarchy
Recognize that you only hate your “flaws” because the patriarchy depends on it to keep women in line. Love yourself to spite the men who say you shouldn’t.
5. Dress for the body you have
Forget those jeans you had three summers ago. Don’t commend yourself for dropping two sizes or beat yourself up for gaining three. Find clothes that feel good now and stop trying to be who you used to be.
6. Look at other people
Notice girls you think are pretty. Notice her acne, her unflat tummy, her bedhead. Notice how you think she’s pretty anyways. Realize other people see you the same way.
7. Surround yourself with positive people
If you’re constantly around people who are putting themselves down, or even worse, trying to tear you down, you’re much more likely to see your “flaws.” Instead, having people nearby that build themselves up will create an atmosphere where you can do the same. You’ll start to see the difference in your attitude as soon as you change your perspective.
Change won’t come overnight, but hopefully these tips can help give you a start toward loving your natural self. And you should, because you’re awesome inside and out.