Monday, May 17, 2010

The Body Image Peril

Here's a story....
Recent Saturday night. Get ready to go out, take a lot of time on my hair, try not to get too discouraged when I don't love how it turns out. Pick out an outfit I've been excited to wear for a while, a vintage purple silk jumpsuit paired with a ton of ghetto gold and some heels. Checking my self out in the mirror and feeling pretty good about myself. Head out for the evening. Fast forward 12 hours to when I get a look at the photos documenting the evening and all my self esteem goes right out the window. How can I feel so good about an outfit when clearly on film I look like a fat cow?
This story isn't unique to that particular Saturday or even to just me. So many beautiful, awesome women I know have crazy body image issues and we are so hard on ourselves about them. My self consciousness about the way I look sometimes actually prevents me from just letting go and having a good time. If there's a camera around I'm more concerned with how I'll look in a picture then just enjoying the moment. I was recently reading my dear friend Olivia's blog talking about how critical she is of her cellulite but at the same time gives props to ladies that don't let a little cellulite dictate their fashion choices. See when I look her I see a total babe with a body to die for. I'm jealous of her flat stomach and nice rack. I hate that we notice flaws about ourselves that others barely pay attention to.
This has got me thinking why can't we accept our bodies they way they are? I talk a lot about self acceptance but always seem to revert back to being overly critical of myself, it's completely ridiculous! I can think about acceptance just fine, it's feeling it that's the trouble. I know that this is the body I have and while I can workout and be healthy there are some features that aren't going to change. Since this is the case I need to feel appreciative of what I was born with everyday instead of just sometimes! Instead of finding flaws first I need to start with finding what's positive about a picture or outfit or whatever! The problem is this is easier said than done; I wish it was as easy as flipping a switch in my brain. Alas, I think it will take a bit more effort than that...can anyone say affirmations?!

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