Like every woman I know, I too have struggled with body confidence and acceptance. Even when I was a size 10-12, there were parts of my body I just didn’t like. Considering I haven’t always been plus, it has been difficult at times to accept my curvier body. And building body confidence when you’re plus can be much more challenging.
Let’s face it now, in a world filled with magazine covers and Instagram hotties that tell us our butts should be round, our arms have to be toned and our abs must be flat, it can be pretty damn difficult to accept ourselves just the way we are.
If we let ourselves wallow in a sea of self-pity because of visible cellulite and thicker thighs, chances are we aren’t living our best lives. It is true that poor body image can have a greater (and negative) impact on your overall quality of life. A few negative thoughts can eventually lead to depression, anxiety and withdrawal. I found myself headed there a few years ago.
But then I realized these 220+ pounds haven’t stopped me from zip lining in Puerto Vallerta and Cabo San Lucas, or walking for hours to explore the natural wonders of the Costa Rican rainforest. At my current weight, I’ve worn short shorts and mini skirts, fitted tops and thigh boots, sleeveless jumpsuits and crop tops. I have received compliments from women much smaller than me. I have a husband that loves every dimple in my butt and roll on my stomach too. And I am wearing a yellow, black and white plaid fitted jumpsuit and I look and feel damn good in it! (This jumpsuit is from Forever 21 and was available in plus and straight sizes. Unfortunately, it is sold out. Shop two similar ones here and here. I love them both. My jacket is from Eloquii and is no longer available.)
Don’t get me wrong. Sometimes, I still compare my body (and looks) to other women. Because, like everybody I know, I am still a work in progress. However, here are the tips I’ve used to increase my overall body confidence and self-esteem. I would encourage you to practice these tips regularly. The results will amaze you and have you on track to be the most confident woman in the room … no matter your size.
7 Building Body Confidence Tips
- Stop Comparing Yourself To Others. In our image-driven society it can be hard not to compare yourself unfavorably to the “ideals” that surround us. Just don’t. Learn to love YOU just the way YOU are.
- SurroundYourself With People Who Support You. Spend time with people who have a positive influence on you and who energize you rather than reinforce bad habits. All of my closest friends are body positive.
- Practice Self-Care. The more you love on you the more likely you’ll move in the direction of self-improvement. Schedule some me time and go to the spa for a nice massage.
- Lose Yourself In A Cause. I believe what you focus on grows. At least that’s what my great grandma used to say. So instead of agonizing over how you feel about your body, spend some time and energy on a cause you’re passionate about. I just took 70 underprivileged and homeless kids to see Black Panther. The rewards for me are beyond words.
- Surround Yourself With Beauty. Creating a beautiful environment at home or in the office can stimulate the happy senses. I recently started keeping fresh flowers on my desk and throughout my home. It has made a huge difference in how I feel.
- Spend More Time Looking At Your Self In The Mirror. Rather than spending your energy on wishing you were thinner, redirect your focus on something you can change, like increasing stamina with a daily power walk.
- Smile More! My smile is my favorite body feature. I get lots of compliments on it too. Several studies have concluded that smiling more can help boost your confidence and that of those around you. Smile often and watch how it changes your happy level.