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9 Daily Practices Of Women Who Love Their Bodies

9 Daily Practices Of Women Who Love Their Bodies

Many women tend to criticize any imperfection on their bodies, worrying more about what others think of their looks than how they feel about themselves (inside and out). Constantly pointing out flaws leaves women feeling worse and often deflated. Women who love their bodies practice at least one of these suggestions below:

1. They are open.

Instead of avoiding pool parties, social events, or random adventures; women who love their bodies say “yes!” They do not feel the need to hide; they are open. They are confident in their skin, so they’ll find something that fits for the occasion and go for it.

One way to move forward is to think to yourself, Do I avoid events due to my body? This can help you become aware if you’re holding yourself back. You are allowed to enjoy life and have fun; your body will love you more (and in turn, you’ll love it more). Giving yourself permission to be out with friends and family increases your happiness and confidence as well, getting you out of the cycle of avoiding future awesome activities.

The next time you have the urge to say “no!” to a girl’s trip, remind yourself that your body wants to have fun, and in order to show it love you must go enjoy life!

2. They buy and wear clothes that fit.

Women often keep clothes that are too small thinking they’ll wear them again (and considering the rest of their clothes “fat” clothes until they do fit). This is truly setting yourself up to feel terrible about your body (instead of loving it up!) every time you open your closet.

One simple way to start loving your body more is to get rid of one or two of the clothing items that have not fit for a while. If you’re feeling up to it, go out and replace those clothes with something that fits you in the body you’re in right now.

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By doing this, you’re instantly relieving yourself of the stress of “having to be a certain size” and helps you get rid of thoughts that keep you trapped in thinking your current body isn’t good enough.

Get rid of some clothes that haven’t fit for a while and you will instantly feel a weight lifted from your shoulders. This shows your body that it is deserving of clothes that make you feel good right now, in this moment.

3. They give other women genuine compliments.

Women often find themselves giving compliments that are either:

  1. Leading the receiver of the compliment into returning it. For example, you see a friend at the mall and say, “Oh my goodness I love that shirt! I could never pull it off.” Then that friend says, “Oh my gosh, yes you could! You’d look amazing in it – better than I do!”
  2. Filled with jealousy. For example, “You would be able to pull that dress off!”

Women who love their bodies give ones that they mean and aren’t expecting anything in return.

One way to work on this is to think about how you want to feel when people talk to you (Appreciated? Respected? Loved? Cared for?), and then try giving a compliment that will result in one of those feelings for the receiver. The amazing thing about practicing that is you will instantly feel as if you’ve received a compliment. It’s a reciprocal process.

4. They ask themselves how they want to feel.

Most women have the urge to tell themselves they should do this, eat that, finish that, or buy that. Women who love their bodies naturally ask how certain things are going to make them feel (without using the word should). They might ask:

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  • Will it be worth doing if they end up feeling terrible?
  • Will I feel great after this workout?
  • Does this sound good to me right now?
  • What am I craving?
  • What do I need right now?

If you hear yourself saying the word “should,” try to ask yourself how you want to feel. This helps you to honor your body by giving it what it needs, and showing it love and respect.

5. They redirect body bashing.

Being with a group of women, it is almost expected to hear someone say, “I’m feeling so fat! Look at me you guys!” Often times, others will join in echoing the same feeling.

What women who love their bodies do differently is listen to the comment, and then redirect it with a positive. They know it’s not necessary to continue that course of conversation because it only leads to people feeling worse about themselves.

Next time you’re with a group of women and you hear a body bashing comment resist the urge to join in. Redirect the conversation by asking a random question, or (if that seems uncomfortable for you) simply disengage with that portion of the conversation by sitting back. Doing that is better than egging it on.

During this moment you will ultimately feel incredible. You’re starting to set a positive example, respecting your body, and letting your friends know where you stand on this topic.

Even though it’s easy to join right in with others who are talking poorly about themselves, by getting rid of that negativity your body will thank you.

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6. They fuel their body with healthy food while allowing themselves to eat treats without guilt.

Magazines, TV, and social media make it seem like in order to love your body, you must be on an extreme diet. Limiting yourself from chocolate chip cookies and pizza stresses your body out, can often leave you with food issues, or lead you to overeat on those foods. Women who honor their bodies know, and practice, the importance of moderation. They eat by listening to their bodies, enjoying healthy foods, and indulging so they never feel deprived.

If you are struggling with an extreme diet, check in with yourself by asking the following questions:

  • Is this diet realistic and maintainable?
  • Do I stress about foods?
  • Can I enjoy treats I love in moderation?

Become aware of how your relationship to food is currently and start to incorporate some of the foods you love throughout your week (instead of restricting them). When you give yourself more freedom around food, your body thanks you. Too much deprivation and your body will want to rebel against you.

7. They express gratitude to their bodies.

Gross, fat, ugly, short, too skinny, not enough muscle, small, and large are all, sadly, terms that women use to describe their bodies. Women who love their bodies continually express gratitude for what their bodies are capable of. They thank their bodies for helping them be active, hold their kids, work, and many other reasons.

In order to change your mindset with your body (to start loving it more), give your body some love. Come up with one or two reasons you’re thankful for your body and repeat that in your head often. As always, if you show your body love; it will love you back.

8. They value sleep.

Women know the importance of sleep, but often put it on the backburner thinking other things “must get done.” Women who love their bodies value sleep because of the benefits their bodies receive from it. They consistently make sleep priority so they can wake up with energy each day.

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How do you make sleep a priority? Take baby steps by going to bed 20 minutes earlier each day! Overtime this adds up, and when you’re feeling ready go to bed even earlier.

When your body is well-rested it can function at it’s highest potential.It’s becomes easier to make healthier decisions and get important tasks completed throughout the day while being able to be alert and loving with those around you. Giving your body the sleep it needs sends a signal to your brain that your body is deserving and being honored.

9. They takes break from technology.

Have you ever found yourself scrolling through social media for 20 minutes only to feel awful about yourself? Let’s be real, it’s hard to unplug. Constantly looking at Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and so on . . .leads to comparison. Thoughts like:

  • I’m not good enough.
  • Why isn’t my body like hers?
  • Their life looks so perfect.
  • I wish I was fit like her!

And those thoughts push us further from genuinely loving our bodies. Women who love their bodies effortlessly set their phones aside at least once a day. They do this because they cherish time to be still with themselves without feeling bogged down by other people’s lives.

Honor your body by setting your phone down for a solid 30 minutes per day. This can be hard at first, but you will reap the benefits (and may find yourself leaving your phone more and more). You’ll start to feel free, listen to your body more, and be present in the moments that matter.

Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com

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Last Updated on March 30, 2020

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

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1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

2. Be Honest

A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

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If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

4. Succeed at Something

When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

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6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

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In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

Final Thoughts

When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
[2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
[3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
[4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
[5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
[6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
[7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
[8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

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