"The body is a sacred garment. It's your first and last garment; it is what you enter life in and what you depart life with, and it should be treated with honor." ~ Martha Graham
Which comes first, learning to love our bodies or possessing a positive body image? The body is, quite literally, our vehicle for being, giving, loving and feeling. If you don't possess a positive body image – and most of us don't – learning to love your body can help you develop one. "If you can learn to like how you look, and not the way you think you look," Gloria Steinem assures us, "it can set you free."
The time has come for us to realize that until we work on increasing our self-esteem by loving ourselves in small ways, we can't begin changing ourselves for the better in big ways. We must start by choosing to break the self-destructive cycle of unrealistic expectations, especially our own.
I am so happy to finally see women gracing the pages of magazines in all colors, shapes and sizes. Sadly, the media has done a good job at airbrushing, sculpting and chiseling away at the real women – the woman that is living her life from the inside out. The woman who is taking care of her family, working, cooking, cleaning and walking the dog. The woman who comforts you after a bad day.
My sister, your beauty shines from within. That's where true beauty lives.
Start today by throwing out the world's irrelevant idea of beauty. It never existed anyway! Beauty is born within, and it's up to us to nurture. Cleopatra celebrated her authentic beauty by the ways she painted her face and styled her hair. That was her signature. In the middle ages, women padded their bellies. Don't wait for the world to celebrate you. Find what you appreciate and focus on that – let the rest take care of itself.
Take time each day and tap into your own transformative power. Nourish your body and your spirit by the foods you eat, what you read, think and meditate on. Turn down social media. Slow down and remember to breathe in deeply, breathe in fresh energy and positivity, breathe out tension and stress, let something go.
Rediscover how good it feels to simply move about – stretch, dance, walk, skip and smile. Pamper yourself in the clothes you love, quiet time for yourself to become grounded and centered. Take care of your skin with simple beauty rituals.
"A woman's relationship with her body is the most important relationship she'll ever have. More important than husband, lover, children, friends and colleagues. This isn't selfish - it's just fact," health and fitness expert Diana Roesch tells us. The body is, quite literally, our vehicle for being – for giving, for loving, for moving, for feeling – and if it doesn't work, it's fairly certain that nothing else in our lives will work either.
Today, choose to consciously love and honor the sacred garment Spirit provided for this lifetimes journey and embrace the beauty within...I see and honor the beauty within you!