It took me until after college to start appreciating my body, and I STILL struggle with body confidence at times. I used to hate seeing images of myself on social media, or think I looked big when I stared at myself in the mirror. I know that I’m not alone in feeling like I need to change my body. Sadly, it’s an obsession in our society to be obsessed with our bodies and our weight.
If you read the tips to being in the buff, you learned that I began to feel confident by being nude regularly. But that’s not the only way to build body confidence. Here are 3 key things I do EVERY DAY to build body confidence in whatever shape or weight I’m in:
You have to stop being negative about your body.
I used to be mean to myself and pull at skin in disgust. Saying things like “I need to lose weight” or “I can’t eat that because I’m already too big” was the norm in my daily life. But neither you or I need to talk to our bodies this way. I have read many books about changing your mindset and thinking positive about things in your life. So why wouldn’t that apply to our bodies?
If you tell yourself you’re fat, or you look such and such a way with a negative connotation, OF COURSE your body is going to believe it. Instead of saying “I’m fat” or “I hate my body”, you need to change the script. Incorporate positive statements about your body in your conversation every day. This will definitely take time to become a habit, and you will slip up every now and then, but don’t let that deter you. This WILL get easier with practice.
Speak your body goals out loud, as if they’ve already happened.
One of the things I’ve always wished to change about myself is my stomach. I’ve always wanted a flat stomach, but mine has always been a round potbelly, like I’m permanently 3 months pregnant. Even though I had started saying more positive things about my body, there were still things I wanted to change. So I started to say my body goals, as if they had already happened. For instance, I would tell myself that I had a flat stomach.
Full disclaimer, I’m not saying that this is scientifically proven, but I DEFINITELY found results from this. Just like visualizing your lifestyle goals, you can visualize your body goals. Start telling your body that it’s good at losing weight, or that it doesn’t like to hold on to fat. If there’s something specific you want to happen, like toned arms, tell your arms they’re toned.
Granted, you will still need to work for these changes, just like everything in life. But if you continue to talk positive and say your goals out loud, I believe that you will start to build body confidence. You can also create a vision board (Check out how to create a vision board for tips) so you can focus on your body goals every day.
Always remember to love your body in the moment, no matter how much you want it to change.
My biggest body low was after I returned from my study abroad 30 pounds heavier. I had an internship that summer and NONE of my clothes fit. It was the lowest, most depressing moment of my body appearance in my life. I was ashamed to be seen in a bikini, let alone naked, and constantly told myself that I was fat and needed to lose weight.
Even if it was true that I needed to lose weight, I shouldn't have been that mean to my body. The main thing I have learned with age is that my body is constantly changing. What I thought was heavy 5 years ago has practically become my normal weight. But the older I get, the more in LOVE with my body and the higher my body confidence is.
No matter if you want to gain 15 pounds or lose 50. No matter if you have a dress you want to fit into or a specific body feature you want. You HAVE to love your body how you are today, in this moment. Tell you body you love it. Call yourself beautiful and say that you love yourself. We get so much negativity from all around us, we can't let it happen from us too.
Deciding to build body confidence isn't easy and it will take time. I've been doing this for years and there are still days when I fumble. Just catch yourself when you slip up and say something positive right after. We're only given this one body and it is our job to treat it well. If you haven't already, read about the benefits of being in the buff, it will seriously change your outlook on how you see your body.