Shower Thoughts: Body Positivity
Where to start here. "Shower Thoughts," what is that? Body positivity, that's a doozy! Here goes... The shower is where I do my best thinking. In the shower I am at my most relaxed, completely disconnected from the world (thank goodness electricity/tech and water don't mix) and my mind just runs. I'm hard pressed to think of a problem or question I haven't worked out in the shower and it takes me down some interesting (and sometimes not so) paths. I'd like to try out "Shower Thoughts" as a recurring series; let me know if it's a "high five" or "ish don't think so." (Are Brüno references wildly outdated?)
Last night, my brain took me down the body positivity hole. Maybe it's because we're in "bathing suit season," but I feel like body positivity is EVERYWHERE. Last week's episode of The Bold Type, this article from Buzzfeed on unibrows which features one badass chick that I'm so proud to know (twice!), and all over Instagram.
Body positivity can get a bad rap, with many thinking it means fat is good. Now, I'm not saying that anyone needs to be a certain size, but body positivity is certainly not a celebration of being fat. Rather, it's recognizing that healthy and being a certain size are very, very different things. Body positivity is embracing yourself, accepting what your genes have given you, how you look, all that your body is capable of, rather than wishing you looked more like X, had Y colored eyes, or weighed Z pounds. It isn't permission to down an entire pizza or never exercise, in fact both of those behaviors achieve exactly the opposite as they harm your body and hinder your ability to live a long, full life.
I then started to wonder what it would be like to grow up without hearing the women in my life put themselves down. We place so much blame on the media but how much have we examined our own homes? What if your mother, sister, best friend, cousin, aunt, babysitter, etc. never said she wished her thighs were smaller, her boobs were bigger, her stomach was flatter? What if instead she talked about what she achieved that day, how her strong legs helped carry her through her commute or during a challenging spin class, how the stretch mark on her stomach reminds her of being pregnant with you and is a testament to the miracle of life.
Maybe nothing would be different. After all, at some point we will all feel insecure about something. As social creatures, we look to others for validation and with that come the comparisons. Still, I really think we would have a more positive outlook and feel much more love for ourselves and if I ever have children, I'm going to try my hardest to only and always speak about my body with the kindness it deserves.
What do you think? How have the women (or men) in your life spoken about their bodies?