Tag Archives: love your body

What do you love about your body?

Men and women spend an enormous amount of time using negative self-talk to minimize, judge and criticize themselves. Most people aren’t even aware of how incessantly this internal tyrannical tape plays. Think about it in your own life – how much negative self-talk to you engage in? If you engage in any, it’s already too much!

I decided to reach out to a bunch of women and ask them what they love about their bodies and why. While this question was easy for some, it posed a challenge for others.

Here are their unedited responses. After you read them, I encourage you to take a moment to pause, reflect, answer the same question and give yourself some love! Feel free to share your love in the “comments” section below!

What do you love about your body and why?

Wow. My gut response was so overwhelmingly negative – I love NOTHING! – that now I have to do this and come up with a list, not just for you, but for me. 

I have always wanted to be able to fold over and touch my toes… I have discovered ballet barre and now I can!!!

Today I love my legs because they are strong and powerful and look super cute in my patterned tights right now!

I love that my body carried my children and gave them life. When I see my stretch marks and scars I try to remind myself of that rather than pick my body apart.

I love my body because it is made of the same stuff as the stars we wish on. It allows me to dance and move out into the world with you. My female body is so beautifully complex it reminds me that it has allowed for all human life to exist. Now how could I hate on that?

This is a really hard task and cause for a great deal of reflection. I think it has different meanings for each age and stage and for me causes me to look around and internalize all that is happening around me. I love my body because (so far) it is keeping me healthy and whole. It is allowing me to maintain my family and home, and giving me the opportunity to actively engage with those I love. My body is giving me the gifts of running in the park with my grandchildren and taking an 11 mile walk with my daughter, when we thought we were going for a stroll. How lucky I am. Thanks for affording me this wonderful time for reflection. Yes we take so much time in our lives using “fat talk” and hating our bodies….but rarely do we hug ourselves to say thank you.

I love that my body is so strong and resilient. It really doesn’t fail me and I feel blessed. I love that it’s petite but still womanly, not skinny. On a more superficial level I love my flat stomach.

My instinctual answer would be my smile and laugh because that is what most people recognize about me which I find is a really nice thing, actually cause it exudes more than an exterior appearance.

I love that my body is strong and healthy!

I love that my body can dance because I am never happier than when I am dancing.

I can touch and feel and love up my babies.

What I love about my body is that it has/had the miraculous ability to grow a child! Despite the changes from my pre-baby body, every time I see the differences in my body now, as a mother, I look at those changes with gratitude. I think about my body as having the ability to grow an adorable and wonderful little boy! What a wonderful thing!

I love my legs because they are strong, take me to places, let me dance, and keep me grounded.

As a mother of two daughters that mean the world to me, I am blessed to have a body (regardless of what it looks like) that has allowed me to produce and care for my two precious girls.

My cleavage.

I love my lats! I used to be upset that they make it tough for me to find dresses that zip up all the way. But, then I realized that without them I couldn’t do pull ups. I don’t know a lot of women who can do pull ups so I will keep my lats and stick to skirts, woo!

I love my body because it’s strong and unique, and it hasn’t failed me yet.

One thing that I really love about my body is that it is strong.  I like to feel the muscle tone in my legs and ass.  It feels good to think about our assets for a change.

I love that my body could still support me in a headstand when I was 8½ months pregnant! I feel so healthy and strong knowing I can support myself and my little guy now whether he’s inside or outside of me because of all my years of yoga and Pilates training.

I love that my body is able to move and engage in activities that I love to do.

I actually do love how it can grow in strength and stamina, even sometimes when I am not initially convinced that it can.

The one thing I love about my body are my legs, because they are long and somewhat fit. 

This feels weird but here goes: I like my feet. I was always too klutzy to wear heels, but as a result nothing is misshapen or bent or bony growth where it shouldn’t be. I actually like my rear. A little dimply now but still shapely. Collarbone — nicely defined. Veiny hands and arms like my dad’s, so I’m partial to them.

Right now, I LOVE my belly!!  It’s huge but I’m growing another little person inside. And yes, with the big belly comes some extra cushioning, which can be, at times, harder to accept, but I know that all of it is for a higher purpose – to create a healthy, happy and strong baby!

I’m learning to love that my body is mine and unique to me.. comparisons need not apply!!!

I have loved my body most when it was doing something–skiing, surfing, yoga, Zumba…..having a BABY.  That is when I am grateful not critical.

I love my collar bones. They make me feel sexy.

When I stop and think about it, what I truly love about this body that has carried me through this life so far for better or worse for the last 40 years is that it is absolutely uniquely mine with all of its quirks, beauty and perfect imperfections. It’s been the vehicle through which my persona, spirit and soul has had the good fortune to experience everything from the extraordinarily mundane to the awe and the profound and I am utterly grateful for its functionality and intuition and guidance as well as all of its strength, exhaustion, muscle and flab, power and flexibility, aches, pains, tension and the relaxing, the calming, the sheen and the freckles and wrinkles, and yes even the wrinkles… ok well im still practicing with those 😉 

At the age of 36 I now love more than anything else that my body has the capability of growing life. When I was younger loved the freedom of movement, and ability to fully control my actions. While I still love those things, giving up control to let someone else grow is my amazement.

A few years ago I probably said I love my arms, abs, legs, butt, strength. Since not being as active and able to workout like I used to, not eat the same as I used to and with the medication I am on….my body has changed. I am feeling better mentally than I was last year as I am learning to love me and my body again… but it has been a struggle. I was so mad at ‘my body’ for failing me. I was so angry and felt like my healthy lifestyle was a total waste. I am thankful now, and think differently. If I didn’t have the healthy lifestyle I would have been more ill and unable to deal with this darn Lupus. I loved the body I created from working out and eating well. To be honest, I feel like I have lost my identity as a trainer. My body was proof of my lifestyle. Sounds crazy but this is how I feel. In the last few months I have made some mental breakthroughs and am learning that I am just as strong (even stronger) than I ever was. I work out daily and do what I can. I always eat healthy and that is all I can do.
What do I love about my body? My smile and positive outlook.

I love my body because it carried and delivered my children with such health and perfection, and it now allows me to hug them and chase them and carry them and love them. I am so grateful to my body for allowing me to do this that I feel like I owe my body lots of love and, in return for all it has done for me, I always really try to take very good care of it.

I love that my body has survived two major surgeries, adapted to the complications, and ultimately healed itself. I am truly amazed at its response to trauma and feel blessed that my body didn’t fail me and gave me second chances.

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

Levi's Advertisement

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)


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!


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!