I’ve blogged about the importance of respecting yourself, but this weekend faced me with challenges and opportunities for personal growth, but more importantly to help someone who needs to rehash in her head over and over how valuable and important she is. I’ve been blessed to have powerful influences in my life who reminded me that regardless of weight, height, hair color, talents, skills, abilities, WHATEVER—that I’m of value and can live feeling secure and confident.
My mom shared these two songs with me a while ago and the lyrics speak for themselves. I’m always up for musical inspiration, and these songs are worth downloading, but also pounding the words into your thought process.
—A More Beautiful You by Jonny Diaz “Don’t buy the lies, disguises and hoops, they make you jump through. You were made to fill a purpose that only you could do, so there could never be a more beautiful you.” and also: “Well little girl fourteen, I wish that you could see that beauty is within your heart. And you were made with such care; your skin your body and your hair are perfect just the way they are.”
––Plain by ZOEgirl “You are jewel you’re a treasure. You are one of a kind and you shine just as bright as the stars in the sky. You’re a rare kind of treasure, created just right. So keep your head up no matter the pain, there’s nothing about you that’s plain.”
Today I was in the Ohio University Women’s Center helping for an event, and found an informational list directed for those affected by an eating disorder. It’s titled “20 Ways to Love Your Body!” and I think can influence and affect even those who aren’t suffering from an eating disorder. Eight of the twenty quick reminders on the list are below:
- Think of your body as a vehicle to your dreams. Honor it. Respect it. Fuel it.
- Create a list of people you admire: people who have contributed to your life, your community, or the world. Consider whether their appearance was important to their success and accomplishments.
- Walk with your head held high, supported by pride and confidence in yourself as a person.
- Count your blessings, not your blemishes.
- Keep a list of 10 positive things about yourself-without mentioning your appearance
- Choose to find the beauty in the world and in yourself.
- Start saying to yourself “Life is too short to waste my time hating my body like this.”
- Consider this: your skin replaces itself once a month, your stomach lining every five days, your liver every six weeks and your skeleton every three months. Your body is extraordinary-begin to respect and appreciate it.
I also learned that October 20th is the national LOVE YOUR BODY DAY and Ohio University–along with other colleges, organizations and groups–is celebrating the day by putting on events to highlight and celebrate positive body image and the beauty of uniqueness. The National Eating Disorders Association explains “positive body image” like this: “You celebrate and appreciate your natural body shape and you understand that a person’s physical appearance says very little about their character and value as a person.” A recent quick conversation I had w/ SnackFace about her blog post about body image (found here) reminded me that confidence is something you have to consciously work on and body image affects you on so many levels; physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. I don’t want to be defined by the size of my jeans or color of my hair, because that is limited myself and selling myself short. Everyone is beautiful in their own way; and beauty needs to be more than just skin-deep. Such a refreshing reminder to all of you queens!
“We will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us is better and the other worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original.” -Galatians 5:26 The Message