Saturday, 24 October 2015

You are BEAUTIFUL

Here's a (condensed) list of things I hate about my body:

My wobbly thighs
My bingo wings
My sticky-out tummy
That squishy bit between my armpit and my arms
My skin
My big boobs
My (sometimes double) chin
My unshapely bum
That muscle above my knee

The list could easily go on, but you get the picture. As I'm sat here writing this it's actually making me quite emotional thinking about all the bits I really dislike about my body.

But here is a list of things my body has allowed me to do over the years:

Endless hours of yoga
Running a half marathon
Swimming 1.4 miles in the sea for The British Heart Foundation
10 years of gymnastics
Skiing every year since the age of 2
Netball at county and 1st Team University levels
Representing my school in Athletics, Netball, Hockey, Tennis and Swimming

Again, the list goes on, but you get the picture. My body has been key to helping me do things in life that I love. I run regularly, I have an active job - sometimes teaching yoga 4 or 5 hours a day, I do my own self yoga practice, and I generally eat healthily. I am beyond lucky that my body is fit and healthy - it has allowed me to do so much, and yet I treat it with so much disdain, disappointment and hatred. I know I am far from alone in these feelings and IT MUST STOP.


My body allows me to do the thing I love most 

We must stop doing this to ourselves. We are all beautiful no matter what our body size, shape, skin colour, gender, disabilities, illnesses - there is not one-size-fits-all for beauty, and neither should there be. It is our differences that make us beautiful.

Body image is a hot topic of conversation at the moment even in the "celebrity" world. Everyone from Gigi Hadid to Robyn Lawley to Ashley Graham have all had something to say about it in recent weeks. Gigi defended herself against negative comments on social media, Robyn wanted to highlight her stretch marks just a few months after giving birth, and Ashley is tirelessly campaigning to show women of all shapes and sizes that they are beautiful.

So it seems that even the women who are known for being "beautiful" feel as though they have to fight such negativity. And the worst part? It's our own fault. We do it to ourselves. How many times on a daily basis do you put yourself down for the way you look? If you're anything like me you'll be up in triple figures!

Okay, so it's not all our fault. It has actually been this way for thousands of years. I was mesmerised by a recent YouTube video: Women's Ideal Body Types Throughout History. It shows that even in Ancient Greece there was an ideal body type for women, and although the "Ideal Body" has changed dramatically over the years, the poisonous sentiment that there is an "Ideal Body" sends shivers down my spine. How can we narrow down beauty to such few physical assets? The word shallow most definitely springs to mind.

And although it's something I know less about, this isn't just a problem for women. I know many guys who are tough on themselves for what they look like. They feel the pressure to be strong, tall, muscly. Often taking steroids and pushing themselves to extremes to achieve "The Body".

But please don't misunderstand me - equally, just because someone does fit into the ideal of beauty, does not mean that we should put them down either. No one should be put down. We should all be celebrated exactly as we are - slender, athletic, curvy, disabled - we are all beautiful both inside and out. Our bodies are walking miracles and we should learn to appreciate them as such. You can breath. You can think for yourself. You can do amazing things with your bodies. They allow us to experience pleasure, pain, fatigue, adrenaline, achievements - without them we would not be able to experience this crazy thing we call life.

We need to learn to open our eyes and our minds beyond the preconceived notion of a "beautiful" body. There is not one type of beauty. All types are beautiful. All types are equal. You can appreciate the beauty in all of your friends and loved ones - they don't look the same, do they? So why can't we appreciate the beauty in ourselves? You are beautiful too. I promise.


Image source: Pinterest

I know this hasn't been my cleanest piece of writing, but it's a topic that deeply upsets me, and when you're so passionate about something it can be hard to clearly communicate what you really want to say. You may be thinking "how can someone who sees themselves so negatively write about positive body image", and my response would be: that's exactly why I'm writing about it. I'm fucking sick of being so mean to myself, and something must be done. We must learn to see ourselves positively. Time is too precious to waste on negative emotions, especially when they make no sense.

I'll end by saying this: love yourself. Work on your relationship with yourself. Be kind to yourself. You are BEAUTIFUL.

Love Lucy x

4 comments:

  1. Love this post, Lucy. I found myself nodding along to all of it - I'm also guilty of critiquing my body for how it looks and not celebrating it for being healthy and letting me do all the things I want to do. My journey so far with yoga has definitely helped as I'm no longer working out to "burn calories" or because I, god forbid(!), ate something I enjoy eating but learning to be more connected and thankful for how lucky I am. x
    LilyLipstick

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    1. Thanks so much Lily - I knew there were other beautiful ladies out there doing the same as I do to myself. You have done amazing things! Running a marathon?!!! So much respect. Your body is AMAZING! As you say it's more about connecting to our bodies and enjoying looking after them, which sometimes does mean having a cheeky treat. Lots of love xxx

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  2. Nice blog!

    http://kissthestarsblog.blogspot.ro/

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