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Body Love Basics
By Jess Baker
These last few years have been a progressive whirlwind for “Body Positivity”, a concept that essentially means: all bodies are equal.
“Jes, how do I start to practice body positivity?” is the question I get most often.
My suggestion? We keep it simple. Let’s start by taking obstacles that have hindered us in the past and remove them one by one.
- Obstacle: Believing that your body needs to change before you can love yourself.
I’m fatter than I have ever been yet somehow happier than I have ever been. I have a career and a mission in life. I have people who love me. I am solid in my beliefs. I have more positive attention. I learned to love myself.
I am the happiest I have ever been, and this simply proves that happiness is not a size. Happiness is a state of being. So start today, love yourself!
- Obstacle: A limited Social Media Feed.
Once upon a time, when I was first exploring the concept of body positivity, I stumbled upon a list of body acceptance Tumblrs that kinda blew my mind. The diversity of bodies that I found was something that I hadn’t ever seen or experienced before, and I couldn’t look away. The more bodies I saw, the more stretch marks I saw, the wider range of physical abilities I saw. I wasn’t shocked by bodies in real life anymore; my “accidental gawking” was a thing of the past. My appreciation of all bodies grew, and I started to see the beauty in EVERYONE. And guess what? Eventually this turned into acceptance of myself, I shit you not.
All from changing my Tumblr feed.
- Obstacle: Believing that your body is everything.
Even though I spend my life teaching others about why body positivity is important, I still have my own challenges to face. Most recently: I’ve gained weight. Here’s what that meant: I’ve gained weight.
That’s it. My body is going to keep changing for the rest of my life. If it’s not weight gain, it will be aging. If not aging, it could be an illness. It could be any number of things that will cause inevitable change, which will require me to learn to love the change.
The second that you decide that you have infinite value, you have infinite value. You, my friend, are the owner of your own thoughts and I challenge you to hold onto the belief that you – in your entirety – are enough.
After all, my favourite motto? “Your body, your rules.”