How Can I Love My Body if I don’t Look Like a Naomi Campbell?

2013 -How Can I Love My Body if I don't Look Like a Noami Campbell?

How can I love my body if it looks like this?

How can I love my body if it doesn’t look like hers?

I used to think this way – all the time.

I used to believe that body-love and body-acceptance was reserved for the Heidi Klums and Guiselle Bündchens of this world; women with beautiful, long legs, toned butts, angelic hair and perfect features.

I used to believe that the rest of us mortals were condemned to hating upon our bodies all of our lives.

“Surely, that’s the only way to ever live with a body that’s 5” short, doesn’t support having boobs and instead has chubby arms and legs, right?”

These beliefs, on top of having a difficult childhood, opened up a jar of eating disorders and other mental issues that robbed me of 14 years of my life.

These beliefs caused me to doubt myself, look at myself in disgust and deny myself the many wonders of this world.

These beliefs are doing the same to you.

I know that you are existing in a living hell and have been doing so for most of your life, not realizing that it doesn’t have to be that way, that there is a better option, a healthier one.

This option doesn’t include going on yet another destructive diet, nor does it entail endlessly torturing your body in a gym. No, this option is gentler, tenderer, loving and caring.

It’s an option that enables you to go within and find out what it is you are covering with the hatred you summoned for your body.

I’m talking about self-reflection.

It’s something we don’t do anymore, do we? No, we’re way too busy running from one appointment to the next, chasing deadlines, taking care of kids, partners, parents and forgetting about ourselves.

We don’t sit down in the evening with a beautiful journal and write down what is going through our mind and tucking at our heart.

Instead, we stand in front of our bathroom mirror and curse our reflection.

Enough!

It’s time to change, to welcome love into your life again: to embrace the love you once had for yourself, a love that is still slumbering inside.

Here are three easy ways you can tap into that deep and ever-lasting love again.

1. Give yourself the gift of time.

Take yourself up on a challenge for a week and spend 10 to 15 minutes with yourself, either in the morning or at night before you go to bed.

Reflect upon your day; write down your worries, your greatest joys. Talk about the adventures you want to have in life and the experience you are proud of having had.

During this time, be especially open to the way you feel and to the way your self-reflection changes.

Do you feel issues coming up that you thought were long resolved?

Do you suddenly feel more connected with your core?

Do you notice a change in perspective or a change in the way you feel about certain body parts?

2. Make gratitude your attitude

Once you’ve gotten into the habit of journaling and reflecting, add some body-love to the mix by writing about the beautiful body you are blessed to live in. Write a letter of gratitude to your body and pin a list of gratitude to your fridge. Write down why the things you absolutely cherish and couldn’t do without your body (hint: there are none!). Open your eyes to see what your body is really doing for you.

3. Shine a light on yourself

Every day, think of one body part you have a difficult relationship with. Is it your tummy? Good. Today, focus on your tummy and shower it with love. Tell your tummy how much you adore her, how beautiful it is and how very, very grateful you are that you get to spend your life taking care of her. Put lotion on her and touch her often, telling her you will forever be her friend.

You feel awkward? Good. It means you’re stepping outside of your comfort zone and are beginning to form a new relationship with this special part of yourself.

Once you feel comfortable with your body, focus on your thighs and work your way through every body part you have issues with.

These exercises may seem difficult at first, but they’ll get easier and more fun if you commit to doing them for a while.

Soon, you’ll open your eyes with love for who you are and what you can do in this world.

Soon, you’ll see that your body is not wrong. Your body is not ugly. Your body is not something you need to change.

Your body is perfect the way it was born. It’s the vessel that enables you to create, be, feel, touch, love and give.

Treat it with care. Treat it with love. And remember, you won’t ever have a body other than the one you were born with.

*Photo Credit:

About the JOY Coach

Anne-Sophie Reinhardt

Anne-Sophie Reinhardt is a body image expert, self-love advocate and the author of Love Your Body The Way It Is. Join her newsletter and receive your free 3-part video series helping you to break free from your obsession with food and your body.

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