The Beach Body
As cold weather is replaced with warm weather, people begin to fret about their bodies. That body that was good enough last week is somehow a major problem this week. Those curves that we have hidden for months are now on prominent display. Catalogues and Fashion Websites conspire against us with images of people with flat bellies, and muscular limbs. We mull these pictures over a cold coffee drink with whipped cream, and decide that we must pledge ourselves to the gym, kale, and gallons of water a day.
Reacting To Our Body Image Concerns In Unhelpful Ways
A couple weeks later, we are exhausted, starving, and spending way too much time thinking about our next meeting with the scale. Though it seemed impossible a couple weeks ago, we now feel even less content with our bodies, and think about getting another cold coffee drink with whipped cream to consider this recent development. In all of our efforts to plan and act, we forgot the cardinal rule to being happy: to pursue life in a way that validates, reassures, and empowers us.
Self-Compassion Steps To Manage Our Beach Body Concerns
So, what do we do with all this warm weather and our bodies? Validate your concerns. Acknowledge that you come by your worries honestly. Our environment is rife with pressure to hone 10 minute abs, and sculpt five minute biceps. Then, notice where you are feeling tension in your body, and soften around these stress points. Bring some compassion to your experience. It is hard work to live in a body, and some days are harder than others. Increase this sense of compassion and safety by acknowledging that most people share your concerns. You are not alone! Then, do something really nice to be kind to yourself.
So often, we respond reactively to worries about our bodies. We try to avoid our feelings through indulgence or punish these feelings with overly strict action plans. This self-compassion practice will give you the opportunity to be kind to yourself instead, thereby freeing up the mental and emotional space necessary for a validating, reassuring, and empowering plan.
365 Days Of Self-Compassion. Day 236. In The Books.