Speak Kindly to Your Body; It is Your Home

In a society where the perfect body shape is constantly shifting and forming into unrealistic standards, it is easy for insecurity to rise within women. Body dysmorphia haunts many minds and negative body image is extremely common. In such a hostile climate, it is important to not only treat all body types with respect but also our own bodies. I have become increasingly cautious with how I talk about my own body as well as others. Speaking kindly to your body is essential and a very important step on the road to manifesting a positive body image. There are a few key components that come with speaking kindly to your body: reminding yourself of its functions, complimenting the aspects you love, and accepting the parts of it you don’t like.

woman sitting on white bed while stretching

1. Reminding yourself of your body’s functions.

We tend to find ourselves caught up in how our body looks or how we can make our bodies look “better” according to societal strains. We do this so much to the point where we forget about what our body does for us, how our body functions. Every morning, our bodies wake up. We have beating hearts that keep us alive. Our lungs are the reason we breathe. Blood runs through our veins. Our body’s main function is to live. It takes us from place to place and keeps on living as long as we provide it with nutrients. There is no right or wrong way for it to look. Your body is meant to keep you alive; it is not meant to look a certain way.

2. Complimenting the aspects of your body you love.

Look in the mirror and tell yourself that you are beautiful. Pick out your favorite characteristics about your body and remind yourself why you love those parts of your body. These parts of your body do not define you but reminding yourself why they are your favorite parts of you are a good start to beginning to have a positive body image. The part of my body I always pick when I do this is my freckles. I love my freckles because they are like little constellations across my cheeks and they show my Irish heritage. They are a piece of me that helps me learn to love, or at least accept, the rest of the parts that I may not love so much.

woman wearing shirt

3. Accepting the parts of it you don’t like.

It is vital to accept the parts of your body that you do not like. Of course, it is never okay to judge someone for changing something that they do not like about themselves because if that makes them happy, then good for that person. With that being said, learning to accept that even though you may not like certain parts of your body, they are a part of who you are and that is something you cannot immediately change. Appreciate the function of these parts. That pouch at the end of your stomach serves as extra protection to your organs to keep them from harm. Your stretch marks are a sign of growth. Your scars are proof that you have overcome difficult obstacles. The fat on your body keeps you warm on the cold nights. You don't have to like every part of your body, but you must accept them.

 

Body image is a tricky subject, especially as the definition of body positivity is ever-changing and is constantly being revised. If there is any message you take with you from these tips for positive body image, let it be this: your body does not need to look a certain way for you to be respected. Find comfort in your body. Find a way to get to the point where you don’t need to think about what it looks like, rather you can just live comfortably without constantly thinking about the way that your body looks.

 

Credit: Cover, 1, 2, 3