How do we find a way to love our bodies when we're challenged at every turn?
You're not thin enough.
You're not fit enough.
You're not curvy enough.
It's a challenge every day to look in the mirror and say to yourself, "You're beautiful."
I've battled self-confidence issues my whole life. And, after struggling nearly fifty years, I can assure you that there isn't a magic answer. There's no point in your life where you just miraculously stop criticizing yourself. The best you can do is... persevere. But, learn to persevere with courage. Muster up the confidence to look at yourself and... love yourself no matter how much your brain fights you.
Media. Judgmental, cruel people. Inner demons. There are plenty of things standing between You and Confident You. But, I promise, if you practice self love enough, those obstacles won't be as challenging.
For the next thirty days, each day look in the mirror and say to yourself, out loud or in your head, "You are beautiful." No matter what you feel like, no matter how corny or stupid you think it feels, just do it. You'll be surprised how, if you do it routinely, you really will feel beautiful. I've done mirror exercises at a few points during my life, and it really does help if you let yourself be open to it.
Find something that you love about your face and really focus on it. If you have pretty teeth, or great skin, a cute nose, or if you've earned distinguished wrinkles around your eyes or laugh lines. Focus on the positive.
Then, be really daring. Stand back and dare to look at your body. Celebrate your breasts - whether they're perky or full. Touch your mid-section. Is it round and voluptuous like the Venus of Willendorf, or do your ribs stick out a little? Either way... it's your stomach and it's gorgeous just the way it is. Let your eyes travel to your hips - your full, strong, lusty hips. Hips that are uniquely yours. Look through a different lense. Be kind to yourself.
Starting tomorrow, and for the next thirty days, let the mirror be your friend. Be kind to yourself. Appreciate yourself. Baby steps. You ARE beautiful.