Excited to share another post from Rachael Hartley Nutrition’s newest addition, Kate! She’s got afternoon and weekend availability, so if you’d like to see if you’re a good fit to work together, contact us to set up a free 15 minute phone consultation.
There is no denying it, body image work is hard. On some days it feels impossible. It can hardly remember a time in my life when it wasn’t a challenge in some aspect. In our society, the external messages of “you aren’t good enough” start early, and extend through life with daily reminders.
Every day we’re exposed to “triggers.” Walk into the gym and read faux-motivational #fitspo on the walls. Open Instagram on your phone and see models who represent the <1% of our population. Go see your family and hear comments about how your body has changed. Heck, go to the grocery store and happen to glance at a magazine telling you how you can be hotter in 3 simple steps. We are constantly reminded of society’s beauty standards and where we fail to measure up.
With a lot of hard work and intentional changes in thinking, these things can become less of a trigger. And maybe one day you’ll even be able to say “screw your beauty standards.” But until then, we can learn to recognize that the happiness that supposedly comes with achieving a “perfect body” is an illusion, because even those with the most conventionally attractive bodies are finding new ways to alter their appearances. We can slowly begin to realize that no matter how close we may get to an “ideal” body, the further we will feel from it.
There may be certain times and situations where the feelings of inadequacy and body dissatisfaction become unbearable. For some, it’s their childhood home where those feelings were formed. For many it’s a dressing room. For others it’s places where others engage in negative body talk, like by the pool, at work, or on social media. The list goes on.
It’s fairly easy to identify those triggers. On the other hand, can you identify places where you feel at peace with your body? A place where you don’t feel self-conscious and uncomfortable in your skin, but instead where you feel free, content, and in harmony with your body. Note, I am not saying you necessarily feel in love with your body in these places, and while body love is certainly desirable, body acceptance and peace are good places to start. Read Rachael’s old blog post on exploring body respect, acceptance, trust, and love for more on that topic.
Today, I encourage you to take time to think of the places where you feel confident and at peace with your body. Write down a list and add it to your self care toolbox. Recognizing these “safe places” where you feel okay, comfortable, and at peace with your body, and then intentionally spending time there may help you to carry over that feeling in other areas and spaces in your life.
Need some examples? I’ll share a few of my “safe places”.
I feel at peace in my body when I’m…
Riding in my car with my windows down listening to my favorite music, feeling my hair blowing in the wind.
Spending time with my closest girlfriends who (luckily) don’t engage in negative body talk.
In my scrubs at job walking from patient to patient feeling confident about the care I am providing.
Dancing around in my house and feeling my body move in ways that remind me how much my body is capable of.
What about you? When and where do you feel the most at peace with your body? Share in the comments!
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