I know I have touched on this topic before but I have received a few more inbox messages about it and so I’m happy to do it again.
I have been asked several times, how does one boost their self- esteem? Dealing with self- esteem issues is not easy, it’s not something that can be fixed over- night and it’s something we have to keep working on.I don’t think there is any specific method but I’ll share with you how I boost my own.
There are 4 important factors; media, people, physical and mental health.
Anyone who knows me well enough knows that on my personal Facebook account I follow a lot of magazines for plus size women, plus size bloggers, plus size models and photographers who are constantly photographing plus size models. This means that EVERY DAY on my newsfeeds there are pictures of plus size women on the runway, at events, launching their own clothing lines, modelling etc. Following all these pages is not only a form of recognition and support for these women, but it is my daily reminder of the beauty of curves. If I can find beauty in their curves, I can find beauty in my own.
I have cut people out of my life who just don’t make me feel good about myself. Dr. Maya Angelou said “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”.THIS IS 100% TRUE. I can’t tell you word for word what people have said to my face and behind my back about my body, but I remember how they made me feel. I would never walk around bashing anyone about their weight and so no one has the right to do that to me. I personally have only given permission to my close family and friends to let me know when I’m gaining excessive amounts of weight because I trust they will say it in a sensitive way because it is a sensitive subject. So ladies, I suggest you all establish who those people in your life are that you can trust with such and everyone else you let know, “MY WEIGHT IS NOT UP FOR DISCUSSION”.
This goes for lovers too! I dated this guy who loved my curves, he thought I was gorgeous even at my biggest but he knew I didn’t like myself at that weight and so he called me out on it. He said “Lals, I love your body but I know when you reach a certain weight you become very unhappy and I don’t want you unhappy, so how do WE make sure you don’t get there again?” This worked for me but it may not work for everyone, some women don’t want their partners commenting at all and that’s something you have to make clear.
It is highly important to keep working on myself physically and mentally. As an African woman I have a big bottom which comes with lots of humps and bumps which I don’t particularly like and so I work on. There is nothing wrong with saying I have some problem areas on my body, it does not mean I don’t like my body it just means I want to make some improvements. BUT!!!! As much as I have areas I work on, I don’t stop focusing on the areas I LOVE! AND this is where the mental aspect comes in. Loving your body only when it is how you want it is like loving your loved ones only when they are good to you. Maintain a good relationship with your body throughout it’s changes, focus on the parts you love and take care of how you think about it.
I know people have this perception that bigger women don’t work out but that it simply untrue. I’m at the gym three times a week and I plan on increasing those days when it has been approved by physiotherapist. There is no replacement for working out, it has to be done. The method in which you work out is completely up to the individual and so is the reason because not everyone works out to lose weight. Someone said to me “no amount of working out can make up for a poor diet”. This is true too because a large percentage of health is your diet. My advice is “find an eating plan that is sustainable for you and your particular lifestyle”.