“Since I don’t look like every other girl, it takes a while to be okay with that. To be different. But different is good.” — Serena Williams
Last week, I met with a woman and the first things she said when we sat down was, “You’re bigger.” And then I responded, “What do you mean?” Her next words were, “Well your shoulders are broader and you’re looking manly. I see your workout videos and you look manly.” Calmly I said, “I love my body.” Shocked she responded “Really, like that?” After which, she continued to persist about how manly my body looked and how it’s not the ideal and I looked better the last time she saw me which was over a year ago. My response remained, “I love my body.”
This situation inspired me to finally write about this topic. Why do we women enjoy putting down other women? In this particular situation, the woman had mentioned she was on a diet and trying to lose weight. I was empathetic to her and suggested a healthy place for us to go to. Yet, when we got there, she still felt comfortable making negative comments on my body. It’s quite unfortunate that this is actually not an uncommon interaction especially in Nigeria where body image is severely scrutinized.
Ladies, when we will learn that we don’t get a gold star for criticizing another woman’s body? It’s not a good character. Also, we need to make the effort to love our own bodies because no one else will appreciate and love your body like you do. Self love and self appreciation is an inside job.
I’ve always struggled with my body for as long as I can remember. Firstly, I grew quicker than my peers in grade school so I was always the tallest kid which made me very insecure. Also, I’d gained weight in high school up until when I joined my cross country team at the time. Yet no matter what I do, I had to come to terms that my body will never be a figure 8 and I’d never look a certain way because my bone structure was built differently. I spent much time with God praying and writing about my struggles and my thoughts. Over time, I’ve grown to love this body of mine and I workout very consistently to ensure I treat it with love and build it up.
It’s not been an easy journey, but I’ve definitely grown since I started intentionally loving my body.
Here Are Some Important Things I Want To Note:
1. Love Yourself: Easier said than done, but you need to make the conscious effort to fall in love with yourself. This will build and armor you so when you receive negative or condescending comments, it will not affect your mind, body and spirit.
2. People Act According To Their Own Self Worth: I’ve seen a trend when it comes to negative people. They typically say what their feeling about themselves. Take everything with a grain of salt and never take a comment of someone who isn’t close or intimate with you so seriously.
3. Be Careful What You Consume Mentally and Spiritually: Every human you come in contact with carry a spirit. You need to ensure you don’t consume a negative energy or spirit when you’re interacting with people. To do this, you must have discernment which is build by spending time with God in prayer and meditation on the Bible.
At the end of the day, protect your mind from all forces that seek to push you to hate your body. Love your body at every stage!
I hope you found this blog insightful and I hope this inspires you to love your body at every season. What are your thoughts regarding body image? Please leave your comments below. Thanks for reading beauties! Until next time, you can keep up with me on Instagram @iam_Deborah.