"My legs are fat".
"I hate my side burns".
"She's so ugly".
...why do we say these types of hurtful things to ourselves? Or worse, about others?
Whether I'm talking amongst a circle of girlfriends or happen to overhear a nearby conversation about body shaming, this subject will almost always come up sooner or later. How does it start, you ask? One person will bring up something they don't like about themselves or another person, and then that conversation will soon spiral down into a never-ending complaint session. No solutions, only complaints. Fun stuff, am I right? (Insert sarcasm here.)
I honestly don't understand why we shame, or were taught to shame, our bodies to an extreme. If we look the way we look in real life, shouldn't we accept that fact or do something to change the scenario? Why does society (specifically, the media) not emphasize to teach the younger generation to love themselves, their bodies, and their imperfections? Shouldn't we approach life with a fun, silly, and down-to-earth spirit of embracing our double chins and jiggly thighs? Okay, I may not have made this point sound as visually appealing with that last sentence (haha), but I much rather embrace a real image or person for who they are than a fake or photoshopped individual who was "created" to look perfect. I respect and value those who fearlessly promote body positivity, or those who don't let the fear of imperfections control their life.
Let's take this hypothetical example - let's say I have an hour long conversation with friends compiling a list of reasons about why I want bigger boobs. First off, complaints will NOT change the situation or the state of my boobs, which is why I find it completely pointless to head down this pathway. Because complaining is pointless, this is why I try to stay away from body shaming or negative people who shame others, but the way I act doesn't mean others will do the same.
It's human nature to feel insecure, to feel insecure about how we speak, dress, and naturally look. And it's perfectly okay to feel that way. However, there's a huge difference between one minor comment here and there versus full-on body shaming. These days, I feel that positivity and compliments can be easily drowned out by negativity, body shaming, and insulting comments.
If you want to turn body shaming into body positivity, you only have one of two decisions to choose from - changing your mental state to be more positive and accepting how you look or desiring to make physical changes for the better.
With my social media platforms, I aim to promote positivity in all aspects (sharing words of encouragement, spreading happiness, giving out compliments, writing tips and advice guides, etc.), and this includes addressing body positivity in itself - which is why I'm making this post.
Honestly, it's really easy to change our mindsets, our way of thinking, and our words if we hold the willpower to do so. So the next time you hear your friend or a stranger insult him/herself, please be the one to encourage him/herself to think more positively. Don't add to the mess by shaming yourself and nit-picking at a body part you're not proud of, because that definitely does not help the situation improve. Instead, bring up a physical or personality trait you really like about the person, and chances are, their spirits and day will be lifted. And most likely, they will say something really great about you as well (maybe something you didn't even see in yourself!). Now THIS is the type of positivity that we should be promoting.
So let me be honest with you guys - I'm not 100% happy with the way I look and I'm 100% confident enough to admit that. But, I'm not going to make a list of flaws that I have because that would be a complete waste of my valuable time. There's better things to do with your time than complain about yourself or others, trust me. However, I've accepted the way that I look and love myself for the fact that I can be completely okay with being imperfect. And if I were ever SO upset with who I was or look like as a person, I would make the necessary changes to change the situation. Remember, complaints get you nowhere, but making the right choices will.
And remember this - don't ever let another individual's negative opinion of you consume your life because the only thing that really matters in life is how YOU see yourself. Honestly, it's so important to love yourself all day, every day. When you love yourself, that self-confidence and positivity will be contagious and spread to others - and cheering people up is a very rewarding feeling that haters or complainers will never get to experience. With that, I hope that you can join me on this journey towards promoting body positivity, and let's make people smile together!