It’s that time of year again and our social media feeds are brimming with images of ripped bodies and bikini-clad celebrities. Nothing like supermodels on a beach to make us want to hide under a kaftan all season!
It can be a real challenge not to become caught up in a trying to achieve that ‘perfect body’, and by that I mean the body type we typically see in magazines and on TV. Of course, that’s not the kind of body we see most of when we’re actually on the beach!
There is so much body positivity on social media now. We are seeing so much more diversity and people of all different body types who are confident and comfortable in their skin, and who embrace and take care of their bodies.
But for a lot of us, it’s still a daily struggle to accept and enjoy our bodies.
Here are a few tips to build body confidence and work towards becoming the healthiest version of you…
Close those magazines!
Just toss them in the bin! We need to stop comparing our bodies to the images we see in the media, but this can be very difficult when we are surrounded by them wherever we turn. We can help ourselves by limiting our exposure and choosing to forego those magazines, website, TV channels and newspapers that we know are the worst offenders.
‘I will succeed today’
‘I can achieve my goals’
‘Today I will do my best’
Cut out the critical self-talk, it isn’t helpful to us. Try to put a positive spin on your internal dialog. This takes some practice, but do it enough and it will become nature! Most of us are terrible at receiving compliments and will automatically counter a kind word towards us with a contradiction. Next time someone says something nice to you, try replying simply with ‘Thank you!’.
And on that note…
Don’t fear failure
We are only human and by nature will face failure from time to time. Don’t beat yourself up, failure is not a negative thing, in fact it’s the best way to learn and shift our strategy to set us up for future success.
“Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall” – Confucius
It’s well known that exercise aids weight loss and makes us stronger and healthier, but less well-known is that it’s also great for the mind. Exercise releases feel good hormones (endorphin, dopamine and serotonin), energises us, boosts our self confidence, and can even help in chronic depression.
So, go outside for a walk or swim, hit the gym, or stick on some music and dance your socks off!
Stop judging yourself
Particularly when it comes to comparing ourselves with others. We are all different, have different likes and dislikes, different strengths and weaknesses, our faces and bodies are different, and we have different experiences. So why would we compare ourselves to others?!
‘I’ll never be as fit as him’
‘She’s so much more successful than me’
Cut out this kind of dialog and aim to be the best version of yourself. Focus on the positive things that make you YOU.
We’re in it together
Remember that most of us have insecurities! Whoever we might compare ourselves to, or wish we looked more like, probably has body insecurities of their own. Complimenting other people (when appropriate, and not in a self-deprecating way!) creates positive energy, and makes both parties feel better and more confident!