Today I put on a bikini for the first time in probably a year and it got me thinking about body confidence.
I have been very unhappy with how I look for a long time. Always the first to put in a fat joke, saying sorry to my husband should my belly hang out when we are lay in bed and feeling so anxious every morning because clothes just don’t look right on me anymore.
Weight loss and exercise seemed like the only option to feel better. However today I have been thinking about how I felt when I was slimmer, when I didn’t have stretch marks and looked so tired all the time. I was just as insecure then. So I guess what needs to happen is I need to be kinder to myself, infact only last night Si said ‘why do you beat yourself up all the time’ which made me feel better and then I watched TOWIE and text my friends in despair.
The trouble is I’m not fat, I’m just a horrible shape. So I look at curvy women and envy their bodies. I’m sat somewhere between skinny and lumpy.
So how do you become happy with the body that you have?
1. Stop the fat talk.
Maybe as part of the need to be liked I run myself down. If anyone has anything nice to say then I respond with ‘yeah but look at my thighs’ (not in every situation, if they are complimenting my new armchair I don’t say it.) Its part of the ‘I don’t want you to think I love myself’ thing but it has got so out of hand I struggle to see any worth in myself sometimes.
2. Focus on the non physical good.
Yes I’m unhappy with my body. Is that enough to ruin my personality too? Then what will be left? I suspect Vanessa Feltz. (I don’t hate Feltzy but sometimes she just makes my point for me) Sometimes I can sense that how I feel about my body is affecting my mood and then that of the boys. What a fucking ridiculous example that is to be setting them.
Don’t get me started on this one. I’m so bad for it. Especially with other mums. I look at them and think ‘shit having kids isn’t an excuse after all’ and also WHO are these people that love exercise? How much of it do you have to do to start loving it? I’m guessing it’s the same as drinking. You have to train yourself to like gin or red wine yet somehow it doesn’t seem like such a chore.
4. Allocate self hate time.
This sounds crazy. I self hate in big chunks about three times a day. (It tends to coincide with meal times) I think I would benefit from a Monday morning self hate 10minutes and then absolutely ban any self hate talk and thoughts after that.
5. Be your own best friend.
Don’t think or talk about yourself any differently than how you would to your best friend. Look after yourself a little more.
I have written this lay in my bikini and already I feel better. This is the body I have.
Watch this space, I’ll have my tits out on Instagram in no time.
Oh Cara, you do make me giggle. I love your writing style!
I feel pretty much the same as you. I know I’m not actually fat, but my most of the fat I do have sits on my belly and sticks out making me look ‘up the duff’ when I’m not. This then makes me just want to hide away beneath baggy clothes constantly which isn’t the best, especially now we’ve got a bit of sunshine.
Anyway, all I can say is that you look stunning in your picture and you should be proud of that amazing body you have!
Love Melissa x
Cara you look amazing! Love your posts x
You’re one of the people I wish I looked like! But I get it! Love your Instagram/Snapchat/Blog. I think you’re fab and your honesty is so refreshing. X
I am the worst for comparison! I think you have to try and put blinkers on and concentrate on the good bits and yourself! We should all be encouraging one another.
Everyone has their hang ups. I know I’m “skinny” to most people but since having kids I’ve lost all my boobs and my belly sits out so much further than my chest so I look pregnant in anything that isn’t loose. But we are healthy and I definitely think we just have to try and learn to love the body we are in. When we are all 60 we will be dying to get this body back lol!
Thanks for writing and sharing this post, it does you good to read something like this once in a while. I definitely have daily battles with the negative thoughts in my head regarding body image. The relief I feel when I occasionally give myself a break is amazing, its times like that when I actually properly enjoy myself. I always go on about how women should feel proud of their bodies and stop letting celebrities & magazine make them feel bad etc, etc, but it’s easier said than done.
Cara, it’s like you’re in my head and writing down my thoughts.
There’s some comfort in knowing others feel the same, that we’re all struggling through the same journey that is life. But that’s the realistic side of me. The side that’s knows I have my health, that things could be worse and that I’m being ridiculous complaining about my size 8-10 body.
The problem remains; body image is far from realistic at times. When I look in the mirror I don’t see slim calves & ankles…(I’m having a low day so that is literally all the positives I can list at this present moment), I see lumpy thighs, untoned belly, flat chest, bad skin, frizzy hair. Come Monday morning it takes all my strength to not just crawl back to bed and give in to my insecurities and self hate.
It does affect my mood certainly. I can just about cover it at work, with a smile, but the smile has all but faded as soon I get in the car home & my husband certainly gets the brunt by the time I’m back.
I don’t know the answer. Too many mirrors perhaps…
Instagram is both my friend and my enemy!