We're all harder on ourselves than anyone else is when it comes to our body. We see every tiny imperfection, every dimple, line, crease, and fold, even though other's may tilt their head in confusion at what you're seeing exactly. But this constant self demolition doesn't do you any good and simply hacks at your confidence and self worth and if you don't feel worthy, how are you suppose to lift yourself up? You have got to start cheering yourself on.
1. Stop looking at fashion magazines, and comparing.
Those women are beautiful, but their bodies aren't typical. How often do you see that body type walking around? They were born that way.
2. Stop looking at the fitness magazines and thinking that's what you should look like.
Remember, they're models. They're picked *because* they look a certain way not because they're so much fitter than everyone else. And frankly, as lovely as they may be, they're often too thin (in my opinion) to represent what fitness looks like. They may have been born thin and more power to them, but fitness has muscle, it has body fat, and it has weight. Generally the models in these magazines don't represent anyone out of their twenties. So please, don't compare yourself to them. There are a few good fitness magazines out there with solid nutrition and workout advice (Oxygen Magazine is one) so take the right information and look to some of those women for inspiration, but don't compare.
3. Stop comparing yourself to all the Body Weight/Body Fat charts.
They are guidelines, not hard and fast rules. Someone who is very fit with a lot of lean muscle may be near or over the weight limit and below the body fat limits. Obviously they're not unhealthy so those chart numbers are meaningless. The bottom line, you don't need a chart to tell you to get in shape, or that you want to be smaller and fitter, just go start doing the right things and don't measure yourself by numbers.
4. Stop wearing clothes that are too big or too small.
Neither put you in your best light. Choose everyday clothes that fit your shape, and you actually enhance it, not draw attention to it. If you can, go pick a workout wardrobe. It can be funky workout pants and tops or simply comfy T's and shorts, but pick what fits and get dressed for "work".
5. Get off the scale!
Don't get so wrapped up in the numbers that you let them determine your worth and progress. Do NOT weigh yourself everyday, there are too many fluctuations for it to be accurate and the fitter you get the slower the weight loss becomes; once a week max, but twice a month if you need to weigh yourself at all. Scales don't take into account your fat loss and muscle gain or how much leaner, athletic, muscular you are. Weight is just one tiny piece of your puzzle so stop worrying so much about that one piece. Better to be able to look in the mirror with a smirk of confidence.
6. Stop comparing yourself to your friends.
Don't engage in all the downer body-talk about them or yourself. There's enough to talk about without going into a put-yourself-down party. They have positives and minuses just like you. And if they have fitness you wish you had, ask them how they did it. There is nothing you can't do.
7. Just stop thinking about it so much.
It may be hard, but it's that simple. Get out and start doing things that make you feel good about yourself. Take a class, volunteer, start working out, or if you workout, look outside the gym and move your mind away from what you look like and focus on more on what you feel like; doing things that build confidence, peace and well being. Your shape is NOT who you are. Stop letting it run your life. Your beauty is in the energy you put out.
photo by Ryan McGuire