Monday, 12 June 2017

We Are The Beholder

"People often say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and I say that the most liberating thing about beauty is realizing that we are the beholder." - Salma Hayek 

Last week I wrote a post about body image issues and just a few ways to keep it positive. I shared a few behaviors that I established and continued to do in the months and years after finishing up my eating disorder rehabilitation program that I found helpful. They weren't easy and I didn't do them perfectly every time, but I made a strong dedication to these behaviors and they were remarkably life changing. 

To piggy back off that last post, I thought I would share a few messages that I told myself which helped me feel confident as I pursued the recovery of a positive body image. Convincing my mind was my greatest battle. I am sure many of you would agree and can relate. Changing my behaviors was one thing but changing my beliefs and the messages I told myself was key to my continued success. I read a lot of positive quotes and my favorite bible verses daily. I remember coming home and sticking sticky notes on all my mirrors with encouraging verses and quotes I hoped would slowly reshape my mind, even if it was just for the day. There were three very clear messages I habitually told myself. Even now, when I find myself feeling insecure about my post-partum body, I remind myself of the following three messages.

"Perfection" is an unattainable standard
We all know "perfection" is unattainable. And if anything, each person's perception of perfection is different. Yes, culture has some sort of "perfect" body image they have portrayed to us through marketing and photos. But as many of you know (and if you didn't, you need to know) most advertisements have been tweaked, tinted, enlarge, minimized, stretched, and colored to create this unattainable "perfect" body image. And funny enough, in reality, what has been considered beautiful has changed from over time, from culture to culture, and even from person to person. So, through my tough days, I told myself this daily. "Perfect" is unattainable, so be free to set your own standard of beauty which should start with you being you. Own it. 

I have a great purpose
This my favorite message I told myself during my recovery. I have a great purpose in this world, no matter what others say or what I am sometimes tempted to think. None of us will ever know the power and the impact of our lives. No matter how awesome or how boring you think your life is, you have a purpose. No matter how much money you make or don't make, you have a purpose. No matter how important or unimportant you feel you are, you have a purpose. No matter what, you have a purpose. We may not always understand what it is or feel it, but our lives make a difference. Since you are a package you need your body to carry out this purpose. Your body, therefore, plays a vital role in you living out your purpose. But you are more than your body and what you look like. Learning to love ourselves and recognize that we have a purpose will help us learn to accept and love the skin we are in.

Who I am, makes me unique.
You are the only "you".  You are special, and no one will ever be you. Your imperfections make you unique and it is your uniqueness (again, by simply being "you") that makes you beautiful. We all come with our own quirks and gifts. Embrace what you find happiness and love in and no that those are the things that make you "you." 

"Love your body, and teach your mind to respect it." - unknown

You may also enjoy: When Someone You Love Has An Eating Disorder

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