We are all granted a body when we enter this life. We didn’t choose this body. We didn’t build this body. We didn’t select any of its parts. We seem to have a lot of thoughts and feelings about this body…some good and some well just plain old bad.

These negative thoughts are usually worse than anything a bully has ever said. Usually these thoughts you’d never share aloud or admit to another person that these thoughts are believed. These thoughts hold us back from so many of the incredible experiences and unexpected twists life can offer.

There is only 1 person in this life that we cannot escape, it is ourselves. We cannot run away from who we are. We can try to change ourselves but if it’s done through hatred, we will never be happy. We will never find peace. We will never find our path forward.

No matter how we feel about the body we have access to on this journey through life we have the profound opportunity to accept and love what we have in order to grow beyond ourselves and truly come into our own power as a person.

When we start to embrace the physical representation of who we are, where we are TODAY, it becomes easier to set development goals towards a healthier mind, body and soul that gets us closer to the person we envision.

For many of us it’s incredibly difficult to shift our mindset from a dialogue of negativity to one of positive thinking. I’ve personally been on this journey for a few years now. One of the most impactful activities I’ve done to start to propel positive thinking about my body is a mirror exercise. I was asked to sit in front of a mirror and take in what I saw. Take in every line, curve, expression etc. The goal was to look at myself until I saw something I could love. After quite a while I fell in love with my eyes.

From there I could build upon the one thing I loved to find new things. Once I started to feel more positively about who I was in that moment I found the goals I set to improve my body started to fall into place. I started to reach my fitness goals and quite honestly blew past anything I ever thought I could achieve.

So here’s what you need to do:

  1. Find a few minutes when you can be alone.
  2. Sit or stand in front of a mirror. Ideally naked so you can take in your entire body. If that feels like too much of a leap then start with your face.
  3. Just look at yourself. Take in all that you see and allow all the feelings to emerge.
  4. Sit there until you find something you can appreciate, like and love about what you see. It can be the smallest of features to start.
  5. Over time use that feature you love to grow into accepting more and more parts of yourself.

My favorite lesson – Always come from love and acceptance in order to grow. It’s the foundation in which to build and let hatred crumble.