This summer I will be taking a trip to Hawaii with my boyfriend, Brandon. We will be staying there for a week, a trip gifted to us for graduating from college in May. I am so grateful for this trip, Brandon and I worked so hard over the past 4 years and we deserve a moment to ourselves.
Yet, The one thing that I think about is I HAVE TO WEAR A BIKINI!!
But lets take a moment to understand that this is a common fear among almost every female. It’s not like I one day woke up and said, “I am going to be insecure about my body.” No, it was a collection of moments that built up that way of thinking. As a women we are constantly being shown in the media that our bodies don’t embody “perfection.” We claim our “baggage” and “guilt” at such a young age now, it’s scary to see girls as young as five thinking that they are ugly.
The bikini so scary because it exposes what we don’t tend to show in public. But also it sections our bodies off into parts, a focus on belly, booty, and legs. This idea that these sections of our bodies are all the matter. The fitness industry constantly uses this fear of summer clothing to their advantage, “Bikini ready workout” “Bikini booty” “Victoria Secret Bikini Body,” (etc).
As I write this the campus TV is on in the background, a NutriSystem commercial promoting their diet plan to loose stubborn belly fat… This is the society we live in.
I know I’m healthy but I also know I’m not perfect. Ever since I was in middle school I struggled with my stomach, with my short torso I have wider hips and all my excess weight goes to my belly. Its difficult to tell that voice in my head to shut up, to leave me alone. I tend to listen to what its says and a majority of the time I tell it off, but sometimes Its message embeds itself within.
I told Brandon about the stress surrounding having to wear a bikini and he told me the simplest thing, “You’re beautiful and I love you for YOU.” It was so easy for him to say and it made me think, why can’t I say something like that to myself?
Patience, Practice, and Love is what it takes to begin that conversation within. The voice telling us negative things will never go away, but if we strengthen and grow our positivity thoughts we can overpower the shadowed voice within.
It’s difficult for me as someone who promotes to self-love to deal with this social constructed stress. But, I am a blogger who believes that honesty should be expressed, transparency provides the opportunity of trust. No one is perfect and I think its important to share these thoughts, feelings, and tools to help other and to get the conversation flowing.
Here are come personal exercises I do:
- Connect with your body through fitness: yoga, pilates, dance, boxing (etc.)
- Avoid certain medias outlets that promote the perfection of women
- Look at yourself in the mirror naked- look, feel, and honor what you see
- Create a personal mantra that empowers you EX) I AM Smart, Strong, & Beautiful
- Wear clothes that makes you feel good- be confident & comfortable with your fashion