While summer is a time for great leisure and rejuvenation, it can also be rough when we’re battling personal body insecurities. Bathing-suit season is one that always warrants great excitement due to the beach and tanning prospects, but lurking beneath those sunny exteriors are often anxieties surrounding the perfect beach body, complexion or what-have-yous.
It’s important to remember, however, that these perfect “what-have-yous” are not real—often enhanced through artificial Instagram filters that have the power to make just about anyone feel small. Below are five tips to practice—not just this summer, but lifelong—on the road to positive self-image and acceptance of the uniquely beautiful you that you already are.
Did that last paragraph read like some cheesy infomercial featuring Kirstie Alley and her nasal-like voice? Sorry.
Eliminate negative thoughts
Negative thoughts are extremely toxic and dangerous simply because they can be all-consuming. Combat those ugly thoughts with positive thoughts, whether it be in the form of looking in the mirror and speaking to your reflection or repeating positive affirmations internally in your head. Wouldn’t you cut negative, toxic people out of your life? Do the same with your negative thoughts.
Refrain from self-comparison
Step away from the Instagram feeds of those pretty people who seemingly don’t do anything but globetrot across beautiful countries while posting photos of their brekkie acai bowls. Refrain from comparing your life and your feats to that of this stranger, for we have all taken different paths and will continue to take different paths meant for us and us alone. You’re doing fine, bud. Allow growth.
Appreciate all that your body can do
So you hate that piece of stomach flab that only you notice, or you’re insecure about your lack of curves or meat, or you hate your complexion because it doesn’t boast that flawless quality of Hollywood stars—you are definitely not alone! To combat these repulsive thoughts, think of all the great things your body can already do, like run a marathon if you were to ever want to, or dance like a fool during weddings or even bike along the beach pier. Not everyone is afforded seemingly mundane luxuries such as these.
Detach yourself from fear of judgment
Simply put: do you, boo. Your soul will quite literally be set free—floating serenely through tiny enclosings of trees and into the clouds to a better, beautiful place—once you decide that you will no longer give a frap(puccino) about what others will think about your outfit choice, your makeup choice or whatever additional choices that YOU make in regards to YOUR life. Wear what you want to wear—go forth with it in full confidence and those ugly fears of judgment will dissipate like Voldemort’s face so dramatically did near the end of The Sorcerer’s Stone.
This is important. How many times has someone complimented you, whether it be in regards to your physical features or intellect, and you completely cast it aside? Why are human beings conditioned to quickly accept and dwell in negativity and criticisms, but shoo away positive affirmations as if they were annoying little gnats? Embrace all the compliments that are thrown your way, for they are all obviously rooted on some basis if someone had pointed it out!
What are some other tips that should be practiced for positive self-image? Do you have any personal stories about self-acceptance? Share with us using the hashtag #CampusCropChat on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, and be sure to follow us on Snapchat @ASICPP.