7 Ways To Respect Your Body More Each Day

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Newsflash: your mind and your body are on the same team. It's easy to forget that both entities are part of a larger sum. That's mostly because it doesn't often feel that way. Sometimes we're not even aware that we're punishing our bodies with our minds, or our minds with our bodies. So how do you find internal harmony? It starts with learning to respect what is. It's not about losing weight or drinking green tea or wearing egg yolk face masks or cutting bangs or treating yourself to an online shopping addiction. It's about taking inventory of what you already have and practicing gratitude.

Last weekend I went on a hike with a friend who often struggles with finding that harmony of body and mind. After a treacherous incline of loose rocks and relentless heat, we made it to the top. We were exhausted, drenched in sweat and out of breath. As young women our age do, we snapped at picture to immortalize the moment. But once she took a look at it, she quickly wanted to forget the moment. She didn't like how she looked and it immediately cancelled out all of the positivity she was feeling the moment prior. On the way down, we talked it out, as young women our age do. Once the initial shock of "Whoa, I look like crap in this photo, I hate my body" wore off, "I need to respect my body" started to kick in. That body that she so quickly shamed because of its superficial failure to impress her in a photo is the same body that carried her up the mountain. UP A FREAKIN' MOUNTAIN! So, because it can be difficult to highlight the ways in which our bodies serve us, I have a few suggestions:

Every morning, remind yourself of all the amazing things your body does for you

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You'll be so surprised by how much you rely on your body. You'll owe it a few "thank yous".

Roll your shoulders back and keep your head high when you're in public

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Fake it until you make it. Keep your chin up and feel confident, smile and feel happy.

Spoil it with nutrient rich foods

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Eat when you're hungry, rest when you're tired. Listen to your body.

Show it off

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This is the only body you'll ever have, there's no time to be anything but proud.

Wear the clothes you want to wear, not the clothes you think you should wear

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It's your canvas to decorate, do what you want with it. Yes, you can pull off that hat.

Try activities that scare you

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Climb a mountain, talk to a stranger, wear booty shorts.

Take a look at your family, and remember that your DNA is a part of something bigger than you are

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Got your father's nose? Your mother's shoulders? That's flipping awesome. Own it.

Images: Kaitlyn Wylde; Giphy (7)