Empowering Discussions, Poetry

Four Actions to Cultivate Body Positivity

Every time I walk past issues of Cosmo and other “women’s” magazines, I cringe. Mainstream media has become a teeny bit better about showing different body types, but are still full of ads and articles that body shame, in a sneaky way. I flipped through Cosmo and saw a page encouraging women to not shave their vaginal area. Yet they made sure to sneak in an advertisement for a new razor. Since February is about love (and African-American history), here are four actions you can take to encourage body positivity and self-care.

 You are the only person who can love yourself unconditionally. The choice is up to you. Below are a few practices to guide you.

  1. Start recording compliments. Every time someone, even your parents, compliment you on anything, write it in your journal. Or if you don’t have a journal start writing the compliments on paper and see how many you can collect in a week. The trick with this is that you must read the compliments later. Set a reminder on our phone to read those compliments every 7 days. Do it now! Put this book down and set a reminder to start collecting compliments. Then set a reminder a week from now and set a reminder to read the compliments.
  2. Find or take a photo of yourself when you look your best. Hang that picture up where you can see it daily and remind yourself that you look good! If you don’t have a good photo or your camera sucks, get a professional picture taken or ask one of your friends who can has a good camera.
  3. Stop the butt cycle. Yes, the stinky butt cycle. You know when someone compliments you and you reply, “thank you, but…”? That’s a stinky butt. Stop yourself from saying that. Each time you say that, pinch yourself. When you receive a compliment the only thing you need to say is “Thank you”.
  4. Surround yourself with people who support you. If you have friends or family that put you down, then you need some distance. If someone is consistently hurtful, then you need to cut those ties temporarily or permanently.

This is an excerpt from the new book, Cultivating Radical Self-Love: A Collaboration of Healers, Artists and Writers. Download the free e-book version at https://www.patreon.com/posts/book-launch-self-16085856

If you want to learn more about body positivity and find support, I highly recommend the following resources for creating body positivity: 

The Love Warrior Community: http://www.lovewarriorcommunity.com  

Rae Across America: https://www.facebook.com/RaeAcrossAmerica

Peace and hugs, Leah

I’m an artist and writer on a mission to bring healing arts into the mainstream. If you would like to support my heart work, please consider becoming a monthly patron on Patreon. As a patron, you can use and fund projects like my D.I.Y. Therapy: Healing Depression E-course, my monthly Radical e-zine, future books and other creative healing projects, like “Cultivating Radical Self-Love: A Collaboration of Healers, Artists & Writers“.

Empowering Discussions


LYBD, Love Your Body Day is celebrating 14 years! NOW, the National Organization for Women hosts LYBD each year to support women in loving their bodies and not feeling bad because they are not skinny enough or tall enough, or because they don’t have perfectly perky breasts or perfect skin.

So it’s that time of year to climb up the mountain (or your roof) and holler at the tops of your lungs “I LOVE MY BODY THE WAY IT IS!” If you are not interested in yelling from a roof or feel like you would attract trouble, than how about saying it while you stand naked in front of a mirror?

Why shouldn’t you love your body anyway? What’s not to love? You use it everyday, so that’s one very important reason to love your body right there.

Your body is unique and helps differentiate you from pod people. See, yet another reason to love your body!

Another reason? You only get one body, so you best start loving it before it’s gone.

You can decorate your body however you want, with tattoos, piercings, hair color and a good old dash of Vitamin D that brings a flush of color!

Oh my, so many reasons to love our bodies. I bet you can think of a reason to love your body.

Do you love your sparkling eyes, your loving smile, your feet, your nose, your knees, your strong legs, your soft arms, the shape of your face? WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR BODY?

Answer that question with one part of your wonderful body and then keep adding until you love every single tiny cell that makes your body as beautiful on the outside as your strong loving soul on the inside!

Today is the day to start loving your body for the rest of your life. This is YOUR year to love love love your body. The next time you see a advertisement of an airbrushed woman or celebrity on TV, remind yourself that you LOVE YOUR BODY the best.

I spent years hating how much taller I was than all my friends. I hated my uneven eyes, my huge feet, my chubby stomach, my frizzy uncontrollable hair, my gigantic nose, my crooked teeth, my thunder thighs, my scars. Basically I spent hours each day feeling sorry for myself and hating myself in the ultimate pity party.
Change didn’t happen over night. Eventually I got used to being tall because I went out more and met other tall people. I started enjoying life by hiking, playing tennis, riding my bike and anything fun outside. I love to move, which keeps in good shape and while my stomach is still flabby and not even close to a six pack I stopped caring. I feel healthy. I eat better. My thighs may indeed be thunderous, but I don’t really care. I have other realist issues in life to deal with like losing my best friend and figuring out how to make an income off of my art. I am no longer spending hours in front of the mirror crying about how ugly I am or wishing that I was as pretty as an actress or model. Most days I don’t even wear makeup. I prefer to enjoy my day instead of fussing over how my make up looks.

Loving my body has made me happier, it has given me loads more time to do other stuff and I am constantly stopping people from berating their own looks. We are all beautiful, we don’t all need to look the same. We can be chunky, we can be skinny with no curves, we can even naturally have a “popular” body, it doesn’t matter. It’s what we do with our bodies that will create a life worth living.

Don’t sit around with friends and diss your bodies in a spirit of being equally unattractive. When you start to complain about your body stop yourself. Compliment yourself and your friends instead, even if you only whisper. If you want to change something about your body, please do your research first. Cosmetic surgery is dangerous. Putting implants in your body can cause health problems and death. Extreme unhealthy dieting will just make you sick and it probably won’t last. You and only YOU are in control of your body.


“This post is part of the 2011 Love Your Body Day Blog Carnival”