Being a body positive woman in any age can be difficult. Not only do you have massive societal standards bombarding you every step you take, but you also have your own pre-determined thoughts of what you should look like looming over your head.
Growing up, like a lot of young women today, I used to think there was only one size to love. You know, the tall, slender woman, with enough boobs but not too much, enough butt but not to much.... It's actually insane the impossible standards we can set our selves.
All my life - excluding those glorious preschool days - I have been taunted and poked at for having the body of a "15 year old". I'm 5"2, I was born with small boobs and a lanky upper body, and to more people than I would have thought - this made me less of a woman. Crazy right? I get comments like "you have a boyish figure", "you literally look 15", "have you not developed yet??", it actually got to the point where I was too self conscious to even go to the beach in a bikini.
I spent years in baggy clothing and push up bras until one day I looked in the mirror and thought "what if I loved my body?" I mean it wasn't a far off thought, a lot of people looked happily content with their bodies why couldn't I be one of them?
So that's exactly what I did. I started to make real changes in my life - mentally, changing the way I looked at myself and others. Because no matter what, if you have boobs, if you don't, if they're fake, if they're real, if you have curves, if your flat as a board, you are a WOMAN, and you should be proud of the body that you are in!!! You're body literally does, everything for you and what, because I can't get a little side boob action I'm going to punish it with my negative thoughts? No way!
Through my years I've learned to love the healthy and SMALL chested body that I have. Even if the road wasn't easy, I'm happier than ever with who I am now. And to share a little bit of my success, I've compiled a list of ways I learned to love my body so you can maybe learn a little something something:
Shut out negative comments
The biggest mistake I made, was when people would call me a man or say that I looked like a 15 year old, I would listen. I would listen and then in my head agree with them. Their words became my own and it was how I recognized my own body. This constantly led me to belittle my self and treating my body like it was something I didn't want. When I realized how much I loved my body, I started to shut out all the negative comments and suddenly their words didn't hold any power against me, and I was soooooooooooooo much happier.
Practice words of love
Other peoples comments aren't the only ones that affect you! What you tell yourself every day is just as important. Start complimenting yourself everyday as often as you can. I mean, look how amazing you are! Look at how far you've come! Look at how beautiful you look today! These are all things to celebrate and think about.
Realize there's no "perfect" body
Everyone has their own version of a perfect body, there is no "one" ideal type. What you think is beautiful is different from what Sarah down the street thinks is beautiful. Some people like curves, some people like lean, everyone is always going to have their own preferences and that is OK, just focus on your own beauty. There is no way that you can please everyone - nor should you want to! You are beautiful being the unique woman that you are!
Stop comparing yourself to others
This is probably the trickiest thing to do today with the evolution of social media. I mean you can't freiken scroll through Instagram without feeling GUILTY for no reason *sigh*. But at some point you have to realize that the person on the screen is SOMEONE ELSE. They are not you, you are not them, and they live a completely different life with their own set of insecurities. As I've said before and I'll say it again, we are all DIFFERENT and your body is different. We need to stop focusing on things that are unattainable and start learning to love who we are.
Empower other women
I think the biggest thing to remember in this day in age is that we are all in this together. Spread words of love and watch your own love for yourself sky rocket. Tearing women down because they don't fit your ideals is unfair and just plain mean. Be a positive light in this world and speak to others how you would want to be spoken to. Every woman is beautiful in their own shape and size, and we should take the time to admire and praise each other!
Over the years, as women we've been getting better at showcasing diversity and being more inclusive. I think the biggest take away from this is just learning to accept ourselves. Forget the ideals, and show em what you're really made of!