Making the decision to not hate your body—even just to strike a momentary, neutral truce with it—is a radical, counter-cultural act in our society.
For that reason, not hating your body WON’T just happen on its own. It has to be a deliberate choice. Knowing this can feel both incredibly tiresome and an exciting opportunity, like peeping through a scary doorway to a place where freedom lies.
The reason why it has to be an intentional decision is because the default position you’ve been socialized into is to regularly inspect yourself for any possible “flaws” you can see. That’s what comes “naturally” to you—or what you perceive as natural. No matter how gorgeous you are, you were taught to look at yourself through your internalized male gaze.
So today, your body wants you to know:
You have the option to see me differently than you ever have before. You have the capacity to look at me with the tender eyes of love. It takes time, but you can learn how to click “off” on the judgement filter, the one you think is protecting you from the criticism and scrutiny of others.
Instead, you can look at me the way a mother looks at her baby, a friend looks at her bestie, or a lover gazes at her newfound love. Just for a moment, before breaking your gaze and going back to regular life, you can smile and sigh and see the beauty and goodness of me, which is the beauty and goodness of you.
If it’s safe for you, see if you can take a few seconds today to look at our face in the mirror and purposely choose to see our beauty. The marvel of the eyes, the tenderness of the cheeks, the hard-earned smile lines…they are all a wonder. If that feels like too much, can you admire our hand, our wrist, our nail bed, our toes?
I sense that doing this can feel awkward and weird or embarrassing. That happens any time we do things that are new and different. It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be doing it.
With enough time and enough practice, what feels forced today eventually feels automatic tomorrow.
If doing an exercise like this feels good in your body, I’ve got lots more where they come from. I offer coaching to people who are tired of hating their bodies and having a chaotic relationship with food. Book a call with me and let’s see how we can move you past the body hatred permanently.