I’ve been sitting on this self-acceptance post for a good few months but it’s body image and eating disorder awareness week so I’ve gotta kick myself in the butt and publish this.
I started my journey to self-acceptance five years ago which was the whole reason for the existence of this blog. Though I thought it would help me gain self-confidence a lot sooner than I did, it actually didn’t.
For as long as I can remember I have always battled body issues. It is only now that I have come to love and accept my body just the way it is. No dieting, starving myself or excessive exercise to feel I have earned what I could eat. But most importantly no photoshop airbrushing and removing lines to feel worthy.
Growing up in Asian culture it was normal to greet someone and tell them how skinny or fat they looked which was supposed to mean, either you are looking slim and it’s a compliment, you’ve gained weight because you were initially too slim or you are just too fat being negative. This affected me as a child growing up, and where my body dysmorphia stemmed from. I still find these comments triggering today.
I spend a lot of my time both professional and personal helping women take a stand against diet culture. The number of women that feel uncomfortable in their own skin and feel the need to vanity size is really upsetting. I myself am sick of having the “perfect” body constantly shoved in my face by mainstream media and seeing only one body type being celebrated. So you know what? The only way things are going to change is if WE put ourselves out there, celebrate and accept ourselves. So here I am putting my body out there and celebrating it.
Though I started this journey five years go I hadn’t made as much progress as I’d hoped. It wasn’t until COVID happened that I really came to accept my body. The isolation forced me to do what I originally intended when I decided to take up film photography again, which was to shoot nude self-portraits. Creating shapes and accepting each roll and every crease felt so liberating and to see images that were not retouched and 100% me was so refreshing and a real confidence booster. Suddenly having rolls didn’t bother me anymore, I’d made it to the turning point.
The more time I spent appreciating myself in the nude the more comfortable I felt. Of course, there were times where I didn’t like certain skin folds but I still had to put it out there if I ever wanted to move forward, love myself and normalise all the folds and fat rolls. Just a reminder, fat is not a bad word. We all and I mean everybody has fat, if you don’t have fat rolls somewhere on your body you must be a robot or something out of this world.
There are definitely days where I feel bloated or sluggish and that’s okay because I have come to know my body and it always starts from the inside out. If I feel good on the inside it shines through. I don’t deprive myself of food as I did in my earlier years instead I make smarter food choices and eat everything in moderation it’s all about getting to know your body and do what works for you and when I have days of feeling low it is 80% due to eating poorly. Like I didn’t need to eat that whole bar of chocolate right before bed!
A few things that set my mind on the right track to self-acceptance
I surround myself with diversity. Women who celebrate their bodies regardless of size, shape or colour.
Stop following mainstream media accounts on my socials. Instead, I flooded my social media with accounts that promote diversity.
I exercise to keep my body moving and the blood pumping. Not because I needed to count X amount of steps or watch the numbers change on the scale. I only exercise by doing something I enjoy.
Taking lots and lots of photos in lingerie, or in the nude! Whatever makes me feel good without having to cover myself up.
Embrace yourself. Every body is different and that’s what makes you special.