Sometimes it only takes a small thing to completely change your day. If you ask me, creating little ways to make life better is almost as good as stumbling across them accidentally. While it might feel like cheating to be crafting your own "little things in life," at the end of the day, you're making yourself happy. And isn't that what most of us really want?
Filling yourself with body positivity and self love on a constant basis can be tiring, though — even if doing as much is meant to be the opposite. Constantly campaigning for fat acceptance online, for instance, has often left me feeling out of touch with the reality of my body. While I spend my days writing essays on body positivity and loving yourself on the Internet, I still suck in my gut for photos and I still go to sleep thinking about all the things I hate about myself. So with huge parts of my day dedicated to all things size acceptance, I can't help but feel kind of silly for not completely applying these notions to myself.
In order to help my own personal body positivity outside of my preachings online and outside of helping my friends, I turn to the aforementioned little things. When you start incorporating these things into your day to day life, you'll eventually feel less like you're taking time out of your day to "fix yourself" and more like you're just completing part of your self care routine.
Here are a few small and simple acts of pleasantness that I hope to always do, and that I'm sure will keep continue to help me find self acceptance.
1. Allow Yourself Off Days
Although having days when you feel negatively about yourself might not sound like they're going to help, they're realistically pretty unavoidable and you shouldn't have to feel any less body positive about yourself because of them. Almost always, you'll wake up the next day and you won't feel like that for another two weeks. Just be sure to forgive yourself, rather than berate yourself.
2. Make Time To Treat Yourself
Even if it's something as simple as taking a bath rather than a shower, it's always nice to do nice things, isn't it? When I gave up smoking in January, I made a conscious effort to buy myself a bath bomb each week with the money I would've spent on cigarettes. Even though this means I'm not saving any money, I'm showing myself how much I appreciate what I do.
3. Be Naked Around Yourself More
Honestly, being naked around yourself constantly will change the way you think about your body. I used to sleep in a bra because I hated how much my breasts sagged. These days, whipping the thing off at the first opportunity is my favorite part about coming home. Taking the time to know, understand, and appreciate your naked body might just help you love yourself a little bit more.
4. Keep On Top Of The Little Things
Doing things like keeping on top of your roots, not letting your nail polish get too chipped, and even making sure to keep your room tidy can totally help with your body positivity. They're all small steps that can do wonders for your mental health, self care, and self love. I love that I always have my toe nails painted, for example. Sometimes looking after yourself in the most basic of ways is just as important as a full-on pampering session.
5. Focus On The Positive (For Others As Well As Yourself)
If you're constantly being positive about others and for others, eventually it will rub off on you as well. Think about it: If you critique people for all sorts of unimportant things, of course you're going to see yourself in those negative ways too. If you choose to focus on the good in people, on the other hand, you'll eventually start spotting the good in yourself, too.
6. Take Selfies
As proven by the popularity of the #365FeministSelfie, getting a good selfie can totally improve how you feel about yourself. I've been known to look through pictures of myself, including selfies, whenever I'm feeling particularly dysmorphic, because it helps me root myself back into reality. It's like, "Hell yeah, I look so good in this picture, how could I ever have thought my nose was too big?!"
7. Accept Compliments
Modesty might be cute, but confidence will always be better for you in the long run. If somebody is telling you that you look good, don't just dismiss what they're saying. Clearly they've felt so strongly about your hair/makeup/eyes/clothes that they just had to tell you, and isn't that great?
Don't be afraid to take pride in yourself and your appearance. The truth is, both can really help.
Images: Georgina Jones