Winter seems to kind of wear down on me. You know the feeling of grey skies, rain (or snow) and just that "blah" feeling. That is why I always look forward to spring. I just love turning over a new leaf (metaphorically of course. I have never literally done that), the freshness of everything, the soft sweet colors. Yet. with spring comes summer, and although I am fond of warm weather and blue skies, I don't like the summer time, because it is a time (for me) about body insecurities.
Last year, I really didn't feel content with myself. I can't tell you why, but I did. I've always been shy and insecure about my physical appearance. I think every woman and girl goes through this, and I have improved throughout the years. But I used to always have these moments of despair, always comparing myself to other girls my age. I always thought I didn't measure up, that I wasn't pretty enough, my clothes weren't quite right, you name it. As I have grown older, those insecurities seem to fade, but at times I am back to my teenage self. Last year was particularly difficult. I was just really dissatisfied with how I looked and how I felt. Seeing as I really don't want to go through that again, I have come up with four reasons to help me "love my body". These are things I am in the process of doing to help me and my inner/physical self.
1. Work out. I have always loved to work out. I remember as a child putting on my leotard and having a grand old time keeping up with our Crystal Light Aerobics video. I always loved that feeling of liberation, and being one with your body. I always loved pushing myself to the next physical limit to see what I could achieve. Although I love working out and the amazing endorphins I receive from doing it, I have never been good at being consistent with it. I have always worked out to take care of my body, and it needs to happen more. I usually do a cardio workout three times a week, and then alternate with yoga on the other two days. So because I love it, I need to do it more often. Goal number one--consistent exercise routine.
2. Compliment myself. I know for me, sometimes when I am in a slump, I think negative about myself. Nothing ever looks right. Nothing I wear seems good enough. I pick myself apart with imperfections and by the time I'm done I am even more depressed about myself. (No wonder.) I know by doing that I'm kind of saying to my Heavenly Father, "I'm not grateful for the life You gave me." I can't imagine how that must hurt our Father in Heaven. So, instead of all that negative talk, I'm going to compliment myself more often. I like to write on sticky notes and put them on my bathroom mirror. Maybe it's a little cheesy, but it works. Goal number two--compliment myself more often.
3. Wear bright colors. Ok, so this may seem a little silly. But my goal this summertime is to wear brighter colors. Now I have always shied away from those bright vibrant colors. Part of it is I'm a reserved person. I don't like drawing attention to myself or standing out. But I truly want to be in a state of contentment with myself, and to be happy with the clothes I put on myself. And if you are happy on the inside, you should show it on the outside. Goal number three--Brighten up!
4. Spiritual uplift. I have always believed that "you" consists of three parts. Physical, mental, and spiritual. I am the happiest when all three of those aspects are in balance and harmony with each other. I have found during the times I constantly work out, think positive about myself, and am spiritually at ease, I find my reason for living. I love those little moments when I am just so happy with life. I need to have those happen more. I love to learn. When I really get in those modes, I devour the scriptures and talks and books like there is no tomorrow. I need to have that drive to improve my spirit. Goal number four--Spiritual lift.
So. That is my plan for this summer, although I really should continue with this all the time. So although summertime is a phase of insecurity, I plan to come out on top this year.