I was always scrawny kid.
Instead of blossoming into a supermodel body, I felt more like a teenage boy.
Flat chested. Skinny legs. Weird shaped nose. Frizzy hair.
A really hot guy told me in junior high I looked like a guy with a girl’s face. Nice.
When all the girls in my class started showing off their cute butts in their Jordache and Gloria Vanderbilt jeans (Am I aging myself?), I looked like Kermit the Frog with a crap in my pants.
Yeah, life wasn’t easy.
I never had body image issues the way a lot of girls do. Even though I got made fun of, I was comfortable with my scrawny teenage body and knew that, one day, I’d grow into myself.
Pretty much everyone (especially women) has something about themselves they wish they could change. If we’re not careful, those dislikes can turn into full-blown self-loathing.
It’s not always easy to accept yourself when you see or feel aspects of your personality or physical image that you do not like. But rejecting yourself isn’t the answer either.
When I get all down on myself, feel fat, slow, out of shape, or hear the ranting of the sometimes crazy person inside of me, there are three little things I tell myself that I believe may serve you to post on your bathroom mirror or computer screen.
1. You Are One of a Kind
Every single one of us is unique. We all have special gifts. You may have a head for math, an inquisitive mind, a talent for singing in tune or playing a musical instrument. Maybe you’re the quickest runner around or have the best splits in the pool. Perhaps you’ve been born with the grace of a dancer or the patience of a saint.
Whatever it is, you are one of a kind.
You’ve got something to offer than no one else has. And if you don’t see this, no one else will.
2. Love What You Got
You were born with what you’ve got. And sure, you can clean up your diet, get on the treadmill, and shop in the self-help section of the bookstore, but the bottom line is that you can’t change the hardware.
Get that negativity out of your head and never feel envy toward someone who has the job you want, the relationship you think is better than yours, the nicer house, the longer legs, the bigger boobs, or the killer abs. It’s an epic waste of time.
Even if you don’t feel all that special, you are.
It doesn’t matter what someone else has. All that matters is what gifts you have been brought into the world with and what you plan to do with them.
You can either choose to spend your time obsessing about what you wish you had, or you can accept what you were given and work within the perimeters of it.
You gotta love yourself for who you are. Period. If you don’t, no one else will be able to love or accept you either.
3. Write Yourself a Love Letter
It’s so easy to focus on the negative.
In fact, I bet many of you, whether you know it or not, actually thrive on the negative.
Next time you are having a hard time, are feeling down in the dumps, or not accepting of yourself, write yourself a love letter. Include everything you love about yourself and the world you’re living in.
I love you because you are so compassionate. You care deeply about everyone around you. You take such good care of your body and your family. You find time to exercise almost every day, even though your life is busy and chaotic. You have a thriving career. You are a fabulous mentor to many entrepreneurs and health coaches worldwide. Oh, and you have a really cute puppy and awesome kids.
Then, take your words and turn them into post-it notes and colorful cards and place those words around you. Notice how those few words make your feel.
Spending time hating yourself can only be a hindrance. It won’t help you grow. It will only make you more miserable.
If you want to feel good, you have to train yourself to feel good.
A love letter is the perfect reminder of how incredible you are.
I have just shared my three little things I do to accept myself when I’m not feeling so accepting. What do you do to bring yourself sunshine when you experience dark moments? I would love to hear from you. Please leave your message below.
Hayley Hobson is an author, speaker, business coach, yogi, Pilates instructor, and holistic nutritional expert based in Boulder, CO. Her unique and intelligent style promotes strengthening while softening—empowering her clients to heal not only their physical bodies but their hearts and minds as well. To learn more about her nutritional courses, events, and custom programs, visit hayleyhobson.com or follow her on Facebook or Twitter.