Becoming body positive doesn’t happen overnight.
You need to work at it and learn how to look for the good things about your body—and everyone else’s.
Check out this video, part 5 of the 5 part Embracing Body Positivity series, where I talk about how becoming body positive doesn't happen overnight. And it's something I work on every day – looking for good things about my body and even those around me.
If you’re struggling, here are 5 ways to start focusing on body positivity…
Speak Up When Others Bully
When some people think of bullying, the first thing they think about is kids in school. While bullying certainly happens in these environments, bullying can (and is) done by adults too! I've experienced it way too many times myself and it's NOT ok so the next time you hear someone bullying someone else about their body/looks, etc. speak up!
Don’t Bully Yourself (or others!)
Sound strange? It's more common than you think & I talk about this in the video below. But how many times have you ate something “bad” and called yourself fat or belittled yourself for having no willpower or self-control? Sure, you're saying it to yourself so no big deal right? WRONG! You're bullying yourself!
This was a tough one for me. I had to question whether I was part of the problem too. I was! I was contributing to it without realizing it (until I did realize it!). Every time I commented to someone about “oh it looks like you lost weight” or “wow, you look great, how much weight have you lost?” I was going against everything I was taking a stand for (to STOP commenting on people's bodies!).
I'm very intentional about what I say these days. Instead of commenting on someone's body (i.e. weight) I find other things to compliment them about. Are they wearing a fabulous outfit? If so, I tell them. Did they wear a different hairstyle, brighter colored clothes (the list goes on)? I comment on those things instead!
Create a List
What are some of the things that you naturally turn away from? For example, do you find certain bodies… gross (for lack of a better term)? Do you believe people should fall in line with certain cultural expectations?
As you start thinking about these things, make a list of them.
Understanding these prejudices is the first step to overcoming them. Once you know what you’re actively avoiding, make it a habit to expose yourself to it regularly so it becomes normal to you. For example, follow hashtags on social media for things like: #bodypositivity, #fatacceptance, #bopo, #lovetheskinyourin, #nobodyshame, and #bodyconfidence.
Work with a Coach (or therapist)
Sometimes, your body image issues are something you can't work through on your own. And just know that is OK! Find a coach who specializes in body image issues and contact them. They can help you work through your insecurities and help you see yourself in a new light. The more love you give yourself, the easier you’ll find it to share that same acceptance and kindness with people who have different bodies.
And remember… body positivity is a journey, not a destination. Give yourself some grace as you begin or continue to work on your own journey!
Learning to embrace body positivity has to start with you embracing yourself first! And you are worth it!
If you missed the other videos in the series, you will find them here:
- Embracing Body Positivity Part 1: Why Body Positivity is for Everyone
- Embracing Body Positivity Part 2: Who Told You to Hide?
- Embracing Body Positivity Part 3: Learning to Love Yourself
- Embracing Body Positivity Part 4: Celebrating Your Amazing Body