I did a guest blog post for Girlfriendology last week about the ways we can help our friends improve their body image. Because friends don’t let friends hate their bodies! You can check out the article here. There’s lots of good ideas there. Go forth and read it and come back. I’ll wait.
One question that arose out of the article was “how can I help my friend if I’m not loving my body myself?” And “who am I to promote positive body image when my own self-esteem isn’t where I’d like it to be?”
These questions make sense. We all look for inspiration. Someone stronger and more secure than us that we can look up and aspire towards. Role models. Leaders.
I’ve wondered about this myself. Because while I’ve been complimented on the “work” I do to promote positive body image, I’m not entirely secure myself. I have times when I’m strong and confident and feel like I can kick the world’s collective ass. Figuratively speaking. Bring it on, I think to myself. Then again, on occasion I look in the mirror and am unable to stop myself from cringing. Am I a fraud? I think to myself. Am I a hypocrite?
I don’t think so. Because I keep working hard and pushing my way through the bouts of insecurity and faltering self-love. All we can all do is try our best. Be honest and not give up. Try to say and do something that will mean something to ourselves and the people around us.
When you think about it, what’s the alternative? Wait until we feel like we have it completely together? Put off speaking out and working towards a good cause? How do we know when we are “confident enough”?
To me, waiting until we feel like we have our brains perfectly straight is eerily analogous to waiting to accept ourselves until we lose those last ten pounds, or get into those pair of jeans we have tucked away. It’s not realizing our worth NOW.
You can make a difference to someone else’s self-esteem. You can speak out against negative messages hampering women’s positive body image. You have a voice. Use it. Don’t wait until you feel you’ve “earned” the right to speak. You have something to say. Demand to be heard.
There are so people that are just awesome, that make me want to be more . At the same time, their greatness doesn’t make me worth less. When you see someone you admire, try to learn from them. But at the same time, try to find in the leader in yourself.
Empowering yourself will not only help those around you, but will help you to appreciate yourself. Be there for your girlfriends. Be there for yourself. You’re “enough” already.