I am so pumped! This next weekend, I will be attending the NEDA (National Eating Disorder Association) annual conference in San Antonio, and I am excited to come together with professionals from across the globe who are passionate about the education, awareness and recovery from eating disorders.
In light of this coming weekend, this whole week’s worth of blogs will be devoted to acceptance, self-care and healthy relationship with your body.
For starters, I LOVE “Top” lists.
You know, the “Top 25 Coolest Things to Do in Austin”; “The Top 10 Jobs in the Country”; “The Top 5 Best Real-Food Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipes”; “The Top 10 Songs of the Week”—you get the gist.
For today’s blog, here is my “Top 10 Favorite” list for the Top 10 Ways to Love Your Body” (And Build Confidence):
- Look in the mirror, and give yourself 3 verbal affirmations about your beauty—THEN do the same thing for the inside! (example: I LOVE your hair; you have pretty eyes; and you have a cute belly button; AND, I LOVE your kind heart, you are a hard worker, you can do anything you put your mind to). If you need some extra inspiration, watch this! (Jessica’s Daily Affirmation).
- Pick an empowering THEME SONG, turn it up, and belt it! (Here is mine)
- Wear clothes that fit and flatter you—size does not matter (no one looks at you and sees a number). Throw out that pair of ‘skinny jeans’ or the dress that will fit “when…XYZ”
- Move your body in a new way! And experience it! Be present. It could be a yoga class you’ve never tried; a spin class; a refreshing walk on a different trail or route; a CrossFit WOD that challenges you in a fun way; a dance party (in a T-shirt, your underwear, and a hairbrush in hand to sing along); have fun with it!
- Cook up a nourishing new recipe that makes you feel invigorated, empowered and re-fueled! (My new experiment this week? Bone broth! It’s something you can add to soups, smoothies, veggies you sautee or drink alongside your meal. It heals and replenishes your body with soooo many nutrients! I’ll let you know how it goes).
- Perform a random act of kindness for someone else. In the words of Audrey Hepburn: “As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.” While you are at it: Carve out some ‘me-time’ in your day to do something kind for your body. A green face mask. Schedule a mani or pedi. Take a break from your desk or a chore—and go on a walk, pray, close your eyes, listen to a song that empowers you, schedule a haircut, buy a new lip gloss and smack those lips.
- Pick up a fashion/beauty magazine at home, or on newstands; and flip through it with an eye of AWARENESS. Tear or cut out the pictures that claim the message of ‘Beauty’ and ‘Ideal’—lay them out on the table or glue them onto a piece of paper. Ask yourself: What message does the world feed me that is beautiful? Are these girls real (hello, airbrush)? How has seeing these images (on newsstands, TV, flipping through these magazines) for most of my life impacted my views of beauty?
- Check out this documentary: Miss Representation. . It will make you think twice about what is beautiful—and that there is so much more to you than a ‘perfect body’.
- Do something—one thing today—that scares you (and build some confidence!). It could be speaking your mind. Saying ‘No’, since you always say ‘Yes’ to everyone. Changing up your exercise routine, or rut, for a new activity outside of your routine for the day. Trying a new recipe—even if you’re afraid of ‘failing’ or missing out on your usual comfort food. Send your resume and cover letter to a far-fetched dream job. Go phoneless—for the day.
- Here’s a big one—throw out the scale. Refuse to step on it. Regardless of your goals—lose, gain or just to ‘check in’—the more you can disconnect from this number, and focus on fueling your body with wholesome eats, keeping physically active and learning to get in touch with your body, the less and less a ‘tug’ that scale has on you. Just do it. Just do it.