Having a bad relationship with your body is hard at the best of times, but in summer, it’s heightened to new levels. I never realised how hard it would be for me in summer until I went on holiday for the first time in 3 years. It’s tough. And it’s a battle you often won’t win.
I don’t have all the answers but I know one thing, I want to help as many people as possible to overcome the feeling of hating your body. It’s draining, it’s debilitating and it sucks the fun out of almost everything, especially in summer time.
So to help as many people as possible, I wanted to share a few tips that I have come up with from my own struggles over the years.
1). Reduce your time on social media over summer- having issues with your body often leads to constant comparison. Comparing every inch of your body to those around you. And what’s the worst place for comparison? Social media. I am lucky that I have good self awareness and more recently I’ve been aware of the negative affects social media is having on the relationship I have with my own body. Know what’s good for you, stop comparing yourself to others and spend time focusing on you, that’s what really matters. Whilst everyone’s posting their highlight reels this summer, maybe take a step back from scrolling and look after yourself that little bit more🥰.
2). Wear less around the house- When you struggle with body image it’s easy to cover up and hide ourselves away all year round, so when we do get our bikini/shorts out it’s like a brand new scary experience. Get used to it before you wear your bikini/shorts for the first time. Dance around in your underwear at home, wear your bikini around the house, whatever helps you to get used to having your body more on show than usual. Accepting and loving your own body brings so much freedom, you deserve to feel good.
3). Practice positive self talk- Quite often, it’s not our body that’s the issue, but our mindset. Having negative body image can often give us a distorted view of what we really look like. It’s like you have a filter that only sees your flaws. Practice affirmations, speak to yourself kindly and remind yourself of all the amazing things your body does for you. When I struggle with my body I try to see it more practically. For example, my body is allowing me to walk along the beach today, my body allows me to swim in the ocean, my body keeps me alive so I am able to see beautiful sunsets. Thank your body today and give yourself a hug because it does a pretty good job.🥰
4). Plan lots of fun things- It’s a lot harder to think negatively when you’re having fun! If laying on a sun bed all day with your own thoughts is going to be hard for you, don’t do it. Plan a trip to a water park, play games in the pool, go snorkeling in the sea or go for a walk with a loved one. Good times and memories are what we treasure the most over time, not the size of our clothes.
5). Wear clothes you feel good in- Treat yourself to a new outfit or find a style you feel most comfortable in. If I feel bloated, I prefer to wear material that’s comfy and not too clingy, I also find it useful to wear bright colours, it helps to lift your mood and feel good. Find an outfit you feel amazing in and wear it on a bad day.
6). Surround yourself with people that love you and make you feel good- Being around those that love you helps to increase confidence and self esteem. Surround yourself with positive people that make you feel good, the right people will never want you to change. It’s also important to be around people that make you happy, smiling and laughing is the best form of therapy for the soul.
Remember this summer, look after yourself, don’t compare yourself to others, remember you are worthy, you don’t need to change and you deserve to have the most fun filled and happy summer possible!