The Path to Loving Your Body and Your Self

I’ve spent nearly 25 years of my life feeling uncomfortable in my own skin, always comparing myself to others and striving for this “perfect body” that always seemed to be so far out of reach. I had a horrible tendency of looking to friends, relationships, family, etc to fill this void, this emptiness that filled my heart. I relied so heavily on others to make me happy that I began to blame them for my negativity (not consciously, of course). Nonetheless, it resulted in the loss of friends, relationships, and some of the happiness that I did have inside of me. I refused to take the blame myself because I didn’t want to admit that I couldn’t love myself, but let’s face it - I couldn’t. Not with the way I looked. And that’s not to say that I didn’t love parts of myself, because I did. But, there were some parts that I couldn’t even bare to look at. I felt disgusted at times. I would think to myself, “How could anyone love this?” I became obsessed with this feeling of emptiness, as if my life was missing something, something so important, so crucial. It felt like a constant battle between being inspired and eating healthy/exercising one day and binge eating junk/not leaving my couch the next due to the overwhelming feeling of vacancy. I was my own worst enemy and for so long refused to see it. As human beings in our current society, we tend to fall victim to thinking that we’re never good enough. Always thinking that if we looked a certain way maybe we would find love, have more friends, land our dream job, etc. That it wouldn’t be until we looked that way that we would finally be happy and love ourselves. It is so important to understand that happiness is not a body shape, hair color, skin tone, weight, style, or any sort of external appearance. Happiness comes from inside of you. Learning to love yourself no matter what you look like is one of the most inspiring and beneficial gifts that one can give themselves. So stop comparing yourself to others! We are all made differently, each of us unique in our own special way. Don’t let anyone take that away from you. Cut ties with people who put you down. I don’t care who you are or what you look like – YOU DO NOT DESERVE IT! But remember to be compassionate while doing so because odds are, the root to their behavior lies in their own insecurities. The rest of the world sees you differently than you see yourself. Guaranteed there is someone out there looking at photographs of you thinking, “I wish I had his/her hair,” or “Why can’t my butt look like that?” or “Why do they get to have such beautiful eyes?” Some people would kill to have the imperfections that you despise so much. Stop obsessing over the things you can’t change! Learn to respect the bodies of others as well. How in the hell are you going to learn to love your body if you are constantly shaming the bodies of others? Release the negative thoughts about yourself and those around you and learn to love every single inch of your body, inside and out. When you look in the mirror, instead of feeling disgusted, tell yourself how beautiful you are every single day until you actually believe it. Walk out of your house with confidence. Keep that chin lifted high, roll your shoulders back, open your heart and force yourself to smile. There is something so sexy and attractive about confidence, no matter what you look like. It’s sparks a fire inside that glows and radiates outward. Start focusing more on how you feel when your body is healthy, not how you look - there is a much deeper sense of gratification there. Stop bitching about your body if all you do is sit on the couch and eat junk food all day. You are only hurting yourself more. Lastly, I’m sure some of you are reading this and cursing me under your breath at how I could possibly hate my body. Well, maybe I’m thinking, “How could you possibly hate yours?” Namaste, L