Showing yourself unconditional love can be the most challenging thing to do, at times. We might naturally be inclined to feel that we’re not beautiful or that we’re not worthy of love. However, there is more to you than stretch marks, sagging skin, and a blemished texture.
The media acts irresponsibly when it pushes those unrealistic beauty standards and employs subtle body-shaming tactics, pushing us deeper into self-hate, all in order to sell or advertise some new beauty product or weight-loss fad.
Given the odds you’re up against, you might feel powerless. But that’s not true. Take this moment to center yourself and realize that every inch of you is perfect the way it is.
When you feel overwhelmed, heed the voices of body-positive activists, like Jameela Jamil and Ashley Graham. These celebrities are aware of what body imperfection feels like. They speak from experience when they try to guide followers toward self-love. While changing self-perceptions is not an overnight process, with persistent attitude changes, you will be able to gradually recreate yourself.
Here are some more ways you can celebrate your imperfections as a human:
1. Get Rid of Body Modifications
Silicone fillers are the most popular type of body modifier used in cosmetic surgeries. Silicone is a synthetic material manufactured in labs, and is highly toxic and even disapproved by the FDA as a cosmetic remedy.
They’re often used in breast modifications, face surgery, and butt-enhancement surgeries. People with issues of self-esteem and body dysmorphia often undergo such surgery options in order to feel good about themselves.
Only if they would just learn to accept their imperfections, they wouldn’t feel the need of going for these wasteful, and often fatal, body surgeries, as fatal complications mostly develop years after getting the surgery.
Immediately go for a silicone injection removal if you have had silicone fillers, as any delay can be doing you more harm.
Part of the experience of learning to love yourself is to focus on your health. You need to reconnect with your body. Start exercising by incorporating different workouts such as Zumba, Yoga, jogging, and resistance training. Don’t limit yourself to indoor spaces only, however. Go for a jog in the fresh outdoors to feel rejuvenated.
Have more holistic exercise goals, like improving mental health, reconnecting with your body, and enhancing general wellbeing, instead of only focusing on shedding pounds or building muscle. If you feel exhausted, take a break and give your body some rest. Whatever your body shape, accept it as is, along with the caveat that you’re a work in progress and that you need to exercise to keep on improving.
3. Eat A Balanced Diet
You should try to eat as well as possible, indulge your appetite with well-rounded meals, having balanced portions of protein and carbohydrates, and reward yourself occasionally with sugary delights.
Eating healthy promotes the production of good gut bacteria, which influence the production of serotonin and dopamine neurotransmitters that are responsible for making us happy.
On the other hand, diet fads, like the Hollywood diet peddled by actors with tons of resources and training staff at disposal, are not even ineffective for the general public but dangerously unsafe, as they can wreck your relationship with food.
Side effects of following these diets are that one starts feeling depressed, angry, and even frustrated, which starts a vicious cycle of hating your body and following the same diets that are making you hate your body even more. The only solution is to start showing a little compassion for your body.
4. Get Into the Habit of Positive Self Talk
Trying to love yourself will not be easy climb to the top, and you’ll often feel shame and guilt. However, know that this is just a part of the process. Like weaning an addict off harmful substances, you will have good and bad days. Help yourself overcome the bad days through positive self-talk .
Treat your body as a friend. Talk to yourself positively using kind words and express gratitude and appreciation for your body. You should know the things you like about yourself and compliment yourself often on having those features.
Self-talk is a great way to inspire some motivation. Psychological therapies like Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP) use self-talk as a treatment tool. When you talk to yourself in the second or third person, you create a psychological distance between yourself and the thoughts you have about your body, preventing anger and shame to affect your judgments.
You save yourself from falling deeper into self-hate only by letting your words provide the immediate affection that you crave.
5. Monitor Your Social Media Activity
Almost everyone is on social media these days, and it’s impossible to completely escape its ubiquitous presence. However, you’ll do well to monitor your social media activity.
No one is a hundred percent honest about their lives on social media, and images are carefully curated and edited to maintain an image of perfection. Watching people have such perfect lives, jobs, or bodies can shatter your self-esteem.
Follow social media pages that encourage body positivity and share unedited images. Absorb the way these pages talk about body and imperfections, influencing how you think. Ultimately, you will reach a point where you can get comfortable with how you look, and, therefore, won’t feel the need to judge yourself or others around you.
Perfection is a myth, and you give into illusions when you aspire to unrealistic standards of beauty and fitness. Your body is beautiful the way it is, warts and all. So, when you subject yourself to painful procedures such as cosmetic and enhancement surgeries, fad diets, and crazy fitness goals, you risk your health and well-being. You need to choose your own mental and physical health over the temporary quick fixes. To do this, get in the habit of eating well, exercising, talking positively to yourself, and monitoring your emotions and motivations when browsing the social media feeds. As Charles Bukowski admonished, “If you have the ability to love, love yourself first.”
Tiffany is a Medical Student and also works as a fitness coach in part-time. She is also a writer and writes on health and fitness articles. Tiffany loves to engage with users and help them provide various useful information on General Health. She provides researched-based information and also featured on various blogs and magazines.