People Who Love Their Bodies Do These 12 Things — Do You?
Instead of waiting until your body is an ideal shape to love it, why not love it now?
After all, your body is the way you interact with the world, the thing that lets you hug friends and family, play with children, smell flowers, and so much more. (See also: 15 Ways to Gain More Confidence Today)
There are people who love their bodies, even though they don't look like the people in magazines and movies. Here are some of the practices they embrace. If you don't do these things yet, you can always start now.
1. Become Conscious of How You Feel
People who love their bodies are conscious about how they feel about their physical selves. They are honest about the things they'd rather change, and they choose to love themselves anyway. When they have negative thoughts about their bodies, they are able to acknowledge those and work to challenge them, rather than burying them deep inside.
2. Be Realistic
You can love your body and set goals for physical change. Make those goals realistic, though, or you're setting yourself up for failure and for more dislike of your physical appearance. If you're not sure if your goals are realistic, talk to your doctor or a good friend and consider their feedback.
3. Let Your Body Speak
Your body tries to tell you things all the time. It communicates basic things, like whether you are hungry or tired, but it can also tell you how you're feeling if you notice where you are holding tension or where and how you feel pressure and release. Take a few seconds, several times a day, to check in with your body, and you might be amazed at what it will tell you.
4. Treat Your Body With Love
Do you act like you love your body or like you loathe it? Treat your body the way you would treat it if you adored it, and you're likely to feel more positively about it and take even better care of yourself. If you're not sure how to love your body, think about the ways you like to be touched and things you do that make your body feel energized. Incorporate these into your daily life and see what changes.
5. Remember What's Good About Your Body
Instead of thinking about all that your body isn't, think about what it is. Make a list of what you like about your body, the things it lets you do, and the things it does well. Look at this list every day, or at least when you start feeling down about your body. Eventually, you will start noticing more and more of these good things.
6. Decide How to Handle Weight and Self-Care
Getting to a healthy weight or staying there is a great way to love your body. In the process, though, you will need to figure out your relationship with the scale. Some people need to throw it away completely, so that they are caring for their bodies for the sake of health and not numbers. Others need to weigh themselves every day, so they can see what normal fluctuations of weight look like. To love your body, you need to figure out what your relationship with the scale needs to be so you can care for it well.
7. Never Criticize Your Body Out Loud
Just as you (hopefully) wouldn't criticize someone else's body out loud, you shouldn't criticize your own. Speaking thoughts out loud not only makes them real in a way that isn't the case if you only think them, but it trains your mind to continue thinking that way. Instead, speak positively about your body and let your mind follow that lead, instead.
8. Know and Love the Ways Your Body Is Unique
People who love their bodies realize that every single body is unique, and that each uniqueness is beautiful. Even if you can't articulate what makes your body unique, you can acknowledge that there's no one who looks exactly like you. Revel in that. Take some time to look at portraits online, so that you can see for yourself how all bodies are special.
9. Give Yoga a Chance
Many people who love their bodies practice yoga. This exercise can be as gentle or as challenging as you want it to be. When you develop a yoga practice and see that expand as you get stronger, you will understand your body, it can lead you to a deeper appreciation of how your body works together as a whole.
10. Sleep Well
Getting enough sleep allows your body to heal, to repair any damaged tissues, to organize the events of the day and, simply, to rest from work. People who love their bodies know how much sleep they need and they do their best to get those hours in, even when that means turning in earlier than they want to. (See also: 7 Ways to Sleep Better in Fewer Hours)
11. Rest Every Day
I include this as separate from sleep because many people who love their bodies find ways to rest their bodies during waking hours, too. Resting can mean sleeping, but it can also mean meditating or finding other ways to relax and give your body a break. Figure out what your body likes by experimenting with different ideas, and then incorporate that into your routine.
12. Work to Improve Your Body Image
A lot of people who love their bodies have done hard work to improve the ways they think about their physical selves. This can include developing habits like staying away from popular media that glorifies certain types of bodies, wearing clothes that make you feel good about yourself, and surrounding yourself with people who think about bodies in the ways you want to.
Do you love your body? How do you practice that in daily life? Please share in comments!
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