13 ways to Cultivate Body Positivity

13 ways to Cultivate Body Positivity

A necessity for all of us.

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I don't know if this is due to my age, my environment or society itself, but lately, I have been struggling with how I view my body. I also cannot begin to count how many conversations I've had with my friends, female and male alike, who express the same sort of struggles. Body image is a huge problem specifically with teens of our society - having an unfalteringly positive body image is so rare. So, on the days (or periods of life, really) that you fondness yourself dissatisfied, unhappy, self-conscious or even upset, it is so important to have concrete ways to remedy these early feelings. Since beginning this list of strategies, I've already felt more confident and more in control of my body and mind. Taking ownership of how you see your body is hugely important and underrated. So, I hope that these few tips give some perspective and maybe even some freed

1. Acquire a favorite perfume.

Smell good, feel good.

2. Drink SO MUCH WATER.

Invest in a cute water bottle that you love and take it everywhere.

3. Be naked a lot by yourself.

Dance naked. Do yoga naked. Don’t just be comfortable wit your body, but learn to love living in JUST your body.

4. Identify the things you want to IMPROVE

Key word: improve. Not things you dislike or that you're self conscious about- everything has room for improvement, and thats not a negative thing. Write out concrete, tangible ways to improve.

5. Be active, but in a way that makes you happy.

If you hate going to the gym, don't go to the gym!! Go on a beautiful hike, do a kickass ab workout to your fav tunes, or join a sport team!! There are so many ways to be active, there's bound to be one that doesn't make u wanna die, so it'll be easy to motivate yourself to do it.

6. Stop talking about “dieting.”

Eat healthy, but balanced, and certainly not less. Don't cut stuff out necessarily, just cut back. Treat yourself every once in a while, but mostly go for healthy, balanced options (remember, fats and carbs and protein are necessary!)

7. Take care of yourself.

Get your hair cut, trim your nails, get that shitty nail polish off, acquire a skin routine, use chapstick, shower often, shave often (if you so choose), and dear god, don't sleep with your makeup on.

8. Try to weigh yourself as little as possible.

Every so often, sure, just to make sure you're still at a healthy weight. But don't do it every day, or every week, even. A five pound fluctuation is basically negligible.

9. Buy clothes that you fit in well and that make you feel confident.

If you're on the fence about something, odds are you're not gonna wear it. Also, even if it's the cutest dress in the world, if it's not comfortable too, don't buy it.

10. Sleep well, consistently, and enough.

11. Unfollow those crazy Instagram models who look unreal.

They are unreal, and you don't need them in your feed.

12. Mental health translates to physical.

If you need to take a mental health day, DO IT. If you work on your mind, you will feel better in every aspect.

13. Listen to your body.

Everyone is different- if you're working out and you feel fatigued, take a breather. If you have a food intolerance, stop eating whatever it is, even if you love it with all of your heart. If you think something is wrong somewhere, get it checked out. You know your body more than you think you do- listen and care.

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Just Because I'm Skinny Doesn't Mean It's OK To Body Shame Me

It's not okay for me to tell you to slow down on the Ho Hos but it's okay for you to tell me to go eat a burger?

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In today's society, body shaming seems to be common, which is unfortunate since it happens to everyone. Body shaming is known to occur to women or men we may consider "overweight." People may crack jokes or insults to overweight individuals.

As I am not considered "overweight," I am considered a "twig" to most — which has, of course, come with body shaming.

When you have a high and fast metabolism, it's pretty easy to just eat whatever you want and not gain the weight like other individuals might, but can I help that? No, I cannot, so stop telling me to go "eat a burger" because that doesn't make me feel any better about my thigh gap.

Skinny individuals might often hear negative comments from people that may pose to be "larger" or "thicker" but that doesn't make it okay.

If I can't tell you to "shed a few pounds" then you most certainly cannot tell me to "gain a couple pounds."

In my opinion and experience, it seems as though skinny individuals like myself get the backlash from "overweight" individuals. Is that because people that are bigger than me think I won't get offended because I'm small, or weigh less than them? Do people that body shame the skinny think that we're too comfortable in our own skin to get mad or angry? Or is it to make me feel bad about being too skinny to eat my way into a couple extra pounds?

Yes, in this world it is very hard to feel confident in your own skin with all the body shaming and negative feedback, but that shouldn't be a trigger to thinking it's okay to lash out on others.

I know for a fact that if I got on Twitter and found a "thick" person and called her "fat" that I wouldn't see the light in the next day because I'd be called cruel or get negative attention for body shaming. Now, If you were on Twitter and saw a bigger person call a skinny person a "twig" or "too skinny" there would be not near as much hate. That is completely outrageous because it all hurts the same.

The truth is, if you're a decent human being you won't care if there's a 400lb man on Twitter posting shirtless selfies or a 5'8"125-pound girl posting bikini pictures. A decent human being would be able to sit back and acknowledge that both pictures are the same. Because if both individuals in the picture are happy and confident then you should respect that and not body shame. What do you achieve from being a negative Nancy? 20k likes on a tweet? If that's the case, then you're just pathetic.

And don't think that just because I can wear a size 0 pant or an extra small top that I'm not self-conscious about my body. It's because of body shaming pricks like you that make me feel like I can't go out to the beach in my bikini because my ribs show when I raise my arms, or because my ass isn't peachy enough for you to look at.

The word on the street has always been, if you don't have anything nice to say then don't say it all — at least that's how my parents always raised me.

If you are overweight, who cares? If you have a thigh gap, who cares? And if you're considered an average weight, who cares? I know I don't, and I especially don't care enough to make an insult about it.

If you don't like when people tell you to go to the gym and lay off the junk food then do not come at me with a “go eat a burger" comment or a “do you even eat" side comment. because you won't gain anything out of that one — especially because I've heard that too many times. Be confident with yourself and keep your snide comments to yourself. I don't care if you're a size 14, so don't care that I'm a size 0.

And that's the tea, sis.

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To The Girl Who Hasn't Yet Found Herself, Keep Looking

You will eventually find her in all the right places, I promise.

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They say you are supposed to go through your awkward transition phase during middle school, but you still feel like you haven't quite figured it out. They say you are supposed to join a club in order to "find yourself", but then you end up sitting in the back watching everyone laugh and catch up. You feel out of place--like you're existing somewhere you just don't belong. Let me be the voice telling you that you are exactly where you are meant to be right now. Every decision you've ever made has led you to this place. This is, of course, much harder to grasp than to just say. Really though, you're doing just fine!

Finding out the things you don't like to do are just important as discovering your passions when it comes to finding your true self. Don't be afraid to join that club, talk to the girl next to you in class, and explore your interests. You might hate it. You might want to run away, but at least you're learning about yourself and where your comfort zone lies. Finding yourself is a life long process, so don't expect an Aha! moment where you have finally hit your destination. Think of it more as a sense of confidence of comfortability in who you are and what you stand for.

Stepping away from friends and family for some time may also lead you to who you are. Often, we grow up and mature only to have the same beliefs, morals, and political opinions as our parents. It's not our fault and we aren't childish, we just trust our parent's judgment and see their conscience as nothing but truth. Part of gaining independence is questioning your own biased beliefs and reevaluating them so they reflect your character better. Same goes with friends. Try to spend a Friday night in with yourself. See what you do. Do you watch a movie? Do you catch up on homework? Do you paint your nails? What is it that makes you feel happy when nobody else is around? By considering the answer to this question, you're one step closer to figuring this whole life thing out.

You may also want to try stepping away from your phone. Your social media (this shouldn't come as a surprise) is giving you the false idea that everyone around you knows exactly what they're doing and enjoys doing it all. Not true. So not true actually, everyone else is struggling to find out just who they are. You and your phone need some distance.

Finding yourself doesn't just happen. You need to explore the world around you and you'll eventually find out where your place is. Be patient with the process and know the right steps will surface when you're ready to take them. Be kind to yourself and have the bravery to discover the girl inside you (I hear she's really cool).

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