Tag Archives: body positive

if mother nature didn’t like curves, she would have made the world flat

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Levi’s Advertisement

Entertainment, fashion, advertising and other industries have an uncanny way of making both men and women feel their bodies are unacceptable. They capitalize upon the insatiable desires to obtain the unobtainable, that is the ideas of perfection that are splashed before our eyes in film, television, magazines, the internet, etc.

Then… every so often a campaign that supports the idea of loving your self and your body comes along and makes some waves. Love the Levis copy “If mother nature didn’t like curves, she would have made the world flat.” And as the Lady Gaga Born This Way lyrics state, that thanks to the DJ’s that be have been deeply etched into our psyche, “There’s nothin’ wrong with lovin’ who you are… So hold your head up… Just love yourself…”

It’s up to each and every one of us to be discerning about what we allow in and out of our psyches and to choose what we will believe. I say…

L O V E  Y O U R  C U R V E S

We’ve all got ’em and they’re not going anywhere. Some are bigger, some are smaller but they are all yours. Own them! Shake them! Embrace them! They make up the beautiful shape of your unique body. The body that you live in. The body that carries you from place to place. The body that asks only for nourishment, hydration, rest and respect.

L O V E  Y O U R  B O D Y

How do you treat your body? What do you say to your body? Do you have a positive self-loving internal dialogue? Or is it more negative and damaging? Are there harmful mantras that you have whispered to yourself for so long that you don’t even realize it anymore? You are not alone (see here). But there is hope! You can consciously change those damaging whispers into empowering mantras that will lift you up instead of crush you (see here). We must all make our own choices about what we allow in and what we keep out, what we let impact us and what we disregard. Consider the external messages you receive and what you internalize. Take note of the messages to change, alter and tweak yourself to perfection and replace them with the reality that you can accept yourself as you are. There is nothing wrong with you!

I leave you with this. Y O U  A R E  P E R F E C T. Don’t change a thing!
(pass it on)

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operation beautiful

http://mrg.bz/pjxaTc

I found this website, Operation Beautiful, last year and I LOVE it. Why? Because it’s all about treating yourself kindly, generously, compassionately and CONSCIOUSLY. In their words, it’s about “transforming the way you see yourself one post-it note at a time.” Their goal: to end negative self-talk, or fat-talk. I spend much of my time each week talking about and exploring exactly this. Let’s all get active and get involved in eliminating negative self-talk and becoming healthy role models for everyone whose lives we touch! What’s your note?


YO! (plait)

Bravo to Yoplait, who pulled a television advertisement illustrative of what many may recognize as an inner conflict in the mind of someone struggling with an eating disorder. However, what this ad also highlights is the ubiquity of this inner dialogue outside of the world of eating disorders. Many women AND men consistently have a negative inner commentary running in the background and are so accustomed to these thoughts and feelings that it becomes the status quo. Take a look at the ad and then tune in to your own inner commentary. What do you say to yourself? Would you speak to others the way you speak to yourself? Which is louder, the positive or negative self-evaluation? How would you like to speak to yourself? You have the power to change this… with consciousness and with intention.


perfecting vs. accepting

The New York Times published this article on getting bikini-ready in their May 25, 2011 Style section http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/26/fashion/the-bikini-as-a-badge-of-fitness.html.

Which do you believe in and why… financially investing in the ever-changing notion of “perfecting” your body or emotionally investing in loving your ever-changing body?


honor your body – part 2

Then I asked the same people to send me what they say, think about, do and believe that is honoring of their authentic selves and their bodies. Here is what they said…

I just think about all the amazing things it does that other people’s bodies struggle to do (everything from heart/lungs working to having limbs that work to being able to grow a baby). When I’m feeling crappy when I look in the mirror, listing these things off make me appreciate what I’ve got!

I like to think of the movie real women have curves, esp when the mom is giving her a hard time about eating flan and she takes a defiant bite in her face. Makes me think of saying FU to all the diet crap/ED voices out there!!

Mantra– my body is my templeActions — certain yoga poses; e.g. goddess, the warriors, dancer, standing squat

I stopped focusing on how much I wanted to lose weight and changed my thinking to ‘I want to be healthy and strong’…..PRESTO! success! I used to say I have such fat thighs…now I say I have strong thighs that carry me through this world! I don’t focus on weight when working with my clients. Healthy eating, safe smart workouts and positive mind and spirit is what gets results. Oh and consistency!

A smile is the best face-lift” – said a 67-year-old in response to an acquaintance who had told her “you should keep out of the sun – you look so much older than when I saw you last”

Not keeping “skinny clothes” and buying clothes that fit my body the way that it is today.

my daily belief: enjoy each and every day because no one else will do it for you!

eating ice cream cones, looking people in the eyes and greeting them with “how are you” versus “you look good,” using my butt to shimmy up mountains hiking, sharing chocolate cake with pistachio ice cream with my daughter, singing in the car, allowing myself to feel big, live big, never ever being small again (in relationships, to myself, to my beliefs), and giving every woman I meet the regard that we all deserve.  Being in healing big wonderful relationships, not starving ones.  This is how I honor my soul, my body then follows suit.

When I am doing something strenuous I often think “thank  you God for making my body work so well.  I can’t believe that at 50 years old, I can make my body move the way I want it to and to have so much fun.  I am so grateful for having a strong, healthy body to go through life with. I honor my body and I take care of it because it does so much for me.”

When I was in 10th grade I read my mother’s book by Leo Buscaglia “Living, Loving, Learning” at one point he says, “If you have fat thighs, celebrate those fat thighs and you’ll find a fat thigh lover.” I applied that mantra to the parts of my teenage body that were unacceptable to me. I am 45 now and those words I have remembered after all these years.

I used to have nice legs. That’s one thing that happens as we age, even the good stuff withers. After 4 children I now have varicose veins and it would really bum me out. My stepfather had his leg amputated from diabetes and it really made me think. He bought a prosthetic with flames running up the side and would laugh loudly as the kids stood in awe of it. I figured I was lucky to have 2 legs and if this man could still be joyful after his loss then the least I could do was accept mine.

I honor my body by…..dancing Zumba!…getting good sleep…swimming, a therapeutic and relaxing workout…eating organic fruit & salad…knowing when to stop drinking (alcoholic beverages)…stretching after workouts…being conscious of my posture esp. when I’m sitting at the computer for a while…taking power naps

Every time I put eye cream on and see a wrinkle, I tell myself…gosh, I’m glad I have so much laughter in my life
 .

With time, women gain weight because we accumulate so much information and wisdom in our heads that when there is no more room, it distributes out to the rest of our bodies. So we aren’t heavy, we are enormously cultured, educated and happy. Beginning today, when I look at my butt in the mirror I will think, Good grief, look how smart I am! Must be where ‘Smart Ass’ came from! -from a forwarded email

I have an limited sense of color… so each day, I make it a point to notice how other women appreciate their body in color and I reach out to at least one. I smile and say something nice about the color, pattern or flow of what they are wearing. It’s so nice to see the ladies react and smile. It always lifts my day, how I feel about my own body, and how I can also dress myself. It’s especially nice when I am with my son and he adds his two cents and say something nice to the lady too.  

When my daughter was born, it changed how I thought about my body. I realized that what my body is capable of is powerful and profound — so much more than the superficial components we usually focus on. My body literally nurtured and grew her heart, brain, lungs, limbs and being into maturity. When I pushed her into the world, I was so proud of my body’s power and endurance. It is simply amazing!

In almost 73 years I am more awake now to appreciating the wisdom of the body. It informs me how I feel, how thoughts develop and where my soul has a home. I am learning that the universe is in me. Guiding others to their body wisdom through awareness of their true sensations while knowing and having compassion for those perceptions and beliefs formed by past conditioning heals me as well.

I thought my body betrayed me when I learned I had osteoporosis, but learned my body was doing the best it could and was asking for my attention and care. That is my daily intention. And so the story goes that I and my body are moving along more together than ever before listening to each other. We are all listening to each other. 

Today I challenge YOU to think about the messages you take in, the mantras you march to and the judgments you wield. I challenge you to consciously discard them and replace them with conscious loving kindness, self-acceptance and self-honoring. Encourage your friends, your family, your children, anyone and everyone in your life to do the same. Be intentional.


honor your body – part 1

All too often, and for a variety of reasons, we internalize negative thoughts, expectations, images and ideas and use them destructively against ourselves. These internalizations turn into damaging whispers that are full of judgment and contempt.
Last year I asked the people in my life to consider the negative messages that they have heard, and perhaps internalized, about their bodies and their selves. Here is the list…
pain is temporary, pride is forever
you can never be too rich or too thin
nothing tastes as good as skinny feels
if it tastes good, spit it out
bigger snacks mean bigger slacks
think thin
dieting is not a piece of cake
a moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips
little pickers wear bigger knickers
you’ve got to move it to lose it
in through the lips and down to your hips
don’t dig your grave with your own knife and fork
no pain, no gain
eat, shrink and be merry
supermodels always go to bed hungry
it only tastes good for a minute
if you indulge, you bulge
thin has a taste all of its own
thinner is the winner
every time you say no to food, you say yes to thin
don’t do anything today that you’ll regret tomorrow
hunger hurts but starving works
i may as well just apply it to my hips
fat makes you fat
What is on your list?

Don’t go anywhere yet… continue here!


our media

The average American is exposed to over 3000 advertising messages every day.
Companies spend about $12 billion on advertising products to children.
Advertising tries to tell us who we are and who we should be. It sends messages about how we should act, dress, look, feel and behave.
Media pressures kids to be more like adults.

Why media matters…
Condones violent and aggressive behavior
Glamorizes tobacco, alcohol and other drugs
Endorses poor nutrition, unhealthy dieting, obesity
Reinforces poor body image and self-concept
Instigates early and risky sexual behavior

Does all media send unhealthy messages…
Absolutely not. There are plenty of healthy messages out there but unfortunately, they tend to be overshadowed by the negative messages that are are too often turned inward and used negatively against ourselves. Additionally, there is a societal pull for these unhealthy messages to continue. I remember when the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty was launched. I was amazed, relieved and so proud of them for taking a risk (unfortunately it was a “risk”) by honoring women of all shapes, sizes and ages in their advertising. I was extraordinarily surprised when I heard that a poll was done about these ads and it revealed a large minority of consumers who preferred the unrealistic images of beauty that are more typically found in the advertising world. So… I do not solely blame the media, our fashion designers and the business executives who want to capitalize on their products. I encourage all of use to reflect upon our own self-esteem, ideals, wishes and judgments of ourselves and others and the ways in which they may draw us individually, and as a society, towards the unhealthier media messages.

What can we do…
Empower ourselves, our children and those around us.
Be discerning about what we see, read and believe. Recognize unhealthy AND healthy messages.
Talk about the messages we receive from our media and how it impacts us.
Ask questions about the message being sent and the intention of that message, e.g.: What is this trying to sell me? What is this ad telling me that I need in order for my life to be better, more complete, or for me to feel better about myself?
Consider what the advertiser is wanting the us to think or feel.
Question what we see in advertisements.
Remember that digital imaging has changed the world… (the average issue of Vogue contains over 400 manipulated images)

Read on…If you would like to read on, I offer you my FAVORITE book about media messages: “Can’t Buy My Love” by Jean Kilbourne.


be…

be with conscious purpose.
be with determination and presence.
be with honor and self-respect.
be soulful.
be profound.
be your truth.
be every day with integrity.
be gracious.
be determined.
be with balance.
be courageous.
be bold.
be grateful.
be peaceful.
be precise.
be strong.
be dignified.
be empowered and intentional.
be committed to your spirit.
… don’t wait for it to happen, make it happen!