“Just because someone else is beautiful doesn’t mean you aren’t, sunsets are beautiful and so are fairy lights and they look nothing alike”
It doesn’t start with loving your body, it starts with loving yourself enough to accept your body, flaws and all. This isn’t, and may never be a post telling you about how much I love myself, accepting myself is still something I am very much working on. I could write you a list longer than my arm about all the things I dislike about myself and all the things I would change, the size of my nose, the length of my legs, my chubby tummy and the fact my cheeks puff out when I smile and that’s just me getting started. But I bet you if I asked my friends and family what they thought of me they wouldn’t say ‘her nose is too big, her tummy’s too wobbly and her legs are too stumpy’. What you see or think about yourself isn’t necessarily what other people see when they look at you. In fact I could tell you on a daily basis my mum tells me how much she loves my eyes, my laugh and my ability to put people before myself constantly. And that’s much more important than having a thigh gap and a size 6 waist, isn’t it?
These are some things I think it’s worth considering; the saying ‘I need to take my own advice’ comes to mind… I’m working on it.
- Stop comparing yourself to others, whether that be people in magazines, films & TV shows, people you pass in the street or people you see online. One of my favourite quotes – “a flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it, it just blooms”. You don’t and never WILL look like Kylie Jenner, Beyonce or Susan from down the road, you look like YOU. Embrace it.
- Surround yourself with people who make you fall in love with life, and eventually yourself. I have the absolute best bunch of friends (I’m biased I know) but the people in my life bring out the best in me, they make me smile and laugh until it hurts, they know how I feel just by looking at me, and they know how to make me be the best version of me I can be, something which I will be forever grateful for.
- Wake up every morning and tell yourself three things you like about yourself. If you can throw negative contributions at yourself every day then you have the ability to find three good things too. I promise.
- Stop basing your happiness on what you look like. Realistically you’re going to enjoy that cinema trip, holiday with your family or the walk on the beach regardless of what number is in the back of your clothes. Life isn’t about how you look on the outside, it’s about how good you feel on the inside. It’s about the memories you make and I’d rather remember the times I let myself enjoy life than sat and stressed about the size of my thighs.
- Remember that you are not supposed to fit into clothes, clothes are supposed to fit you. I am absolutely guilty for having a tantrum because ‘my size’ doesn’t fit me and therefore I am fat and ugly and horrible. When in actual fact I have been a size 12 and an age 11-12 in the same shop when I typically run at a size 8. Crazy right. Just because something doesn’t fit you doesn’t mean you’ve gained weight/ changed shape it might simply be the cut of the item of clothing, I know that if something has a zip I very often have to get a bigger size and if I’m buying jeans I normally have to go down a size (probably due to my lack of bum but there we go). Buy what fits you, not what you think should fit. Cut the label out if it helps but don’t base your self worth on the small number in your dress.
Media is something I feel like I NEED to talk about, largely because of the sheer influence it has on today’s society but also because I know it has a huge impact on my own view of myself. I openly admit that I spend a very large amount of time looking at ‘goal bodies’ on instagram, tumblr and pinterest, more than likely my mood will be then affected by how I have compared myself to the girls online. Perhaps my food intake for the day, outfit choice and self worth will be based on what I see on the internet- beginning to see how ridiculous this is? (thought so).
I know how toxic this is. I don’t know figures but a very large percentage of photos are edited to enhance assets and edit flaws completely changing the actual image before you as consumers see it. If you are familiar with Essena O’Neill you’ll have seen how she recently edited all of her captions to reflect what was really going on behind the photos claiming ‘social media consumed me’. At first I was shocked when I saw this radical change in her attitude, someone who put themselves out there on social media, portraying her amazing lifestyle, beautiful figure and gorgeous clothes was openly admitting that none of it was real, that it was all a social construct to gain followers. Someone who I spent hours envying and comparing myself to was showing that it was all just an act. At first I was disappointed, I was hurt that she had ‘lied’ to the massive following she had but now I have nothing but admiration for the girl, she’s single-handedly reached millions of people and proved that what we are faced with on a daily basis is very often constructed in order to please the viewers, gain followers and make money… any of this equalling happiness yet?
Do Something Nice//
Recently I’ve been trying to make a conscious effort to make people feel better about themselves. I like to comment on peoples instagram photos saying something I like about them, especially those I know aren’t very confident, whether it’s the way they’ve done their hair or makeup, or that I like their smile, or that they look just generally lovely. I’ve also started doing it at work when I serve customers, if it leaves them with a smile on their face then its worth that two second comment.
I’m not mentioning this for people to say ‘oh well done Evie that’s a lovely thing to do’ because I’m not doing it for people to think I’m a good person. I’m mentioning it because if it makes a difference to someone’s day or how they perceive themselves then that’s good enough for me and if you take anything from this post then I would be happy if it were this. Tell your mum she looks beautiful today, go on instagram and comment on a random person’s photo that you like their hair or makeup, tell the little girl down the road that her shoes are cool. They’ll feel good for it, and so will you.
Working Towards Self Love//
Self love isn’t something you’re going wake up tomorrow and feel, but it’s something you can slowly work towards, it’s taken me a very long time to even consider that I might be capable of one day loving myself and I know it won’t happen overnight but I’m willing to give it a shot. I asked some friends and family to tell me something they liked about me that wasn’t related to my appearance and this is what they said.
“I like how you’re not judgemental. I can tell you random stuff that people might judge me about and you don’t. I also like how we act like children together”
“You’re always happy and cheerful, and you’re there to listen to people and help them through things”
“I love you because what you see is what you get, you’re the most lovely and caring person and will do anything for anyone, you’re creative and arty, you’re fun and always up for an adventure”
“I love your sense of humour because you’re always up for a laugh and easy to have fun with”
“You’re very caring and always ask how I am”
“You’re lovely and I love your bubbly personality”
“You’re sweet, giggly and so lovable, you’re just super cute!”
“You’re smart and thoughtful- you always know how to cheer someone up & have bright ideas”
“your kindness and creativity”
None of these relate to my appearance, and do you know why? Because there’s more to me than what I see in the mirror, there’s more to me than the size in my clothes and maybe one day I’ll start to accept that I am worth loving because of these things and not believe that I have to be a certain size or shape to be a good person. And hopefully you will to.
I now challenge you to go and tell three people what you love about them that isn’t related to their appearance, go go go.
Lots of Love and Hugs, Evie xxxx
“When I loved myself enough, I began leaving whatever wasn’t healthy. This meant people, jobs, my own beliefs and habits – anything that kept me small. My judgement called it disloyal. Now I see it as self-loving”