For those of you struggling with seeing your bodies as beautiful, here are some starter tips that can help you find your own personal beauty. It will take time and effort to push off the negative messages you have already heard and believed from the world, but you can do it. God will help you.
1. Thank God for Your Body EVERY DAY
Prayer is an extremely powerful tool. When we talk to God, we should thank Him for our bodies. We thank people who give us birthday gifts, shouldn’t we thank Our Heavenly Father for the best gift ever, a gift that gives us life? I sure think so. Thank Him for specific things that your body can do: running, hugging, laughing, seeing, hearing, etc. Expressing thanks to God in this way every day will help you see the divine worth of your body. You could even ask God for help to love your body the way that He wants you to. I know He will help you.
2. NEVER EVER Say Anything Negative About Your Body
Each and every time we say something negative about our bodies we tend to believe it more and more. The “I’m so fat”s and “I’m so ugly”s are excuses and apologies we feel we have to give the world for not being physically “perfect”. These words are wrecking balls that tear down our self-esteem, just what Satan wants. These put-downs send the message to others that we do not love the gift that God has given us and it makes us even more unattractive. Part of inner beauty is confidence, so if it’s beauty your looking for, stop tearing yourself down! When those negative thoughts pop into your head, do your best to push them out, but definitely DO NOT say them out loud! You will find an increase in confidence and others will see that you possess true inner beauty.
3. Give Real Compliments
We tend to compliment people on style. “Your outfit is so cute!” or “You look so good! Have you lost weight?” or “Love the new hairstyle!” While these compliments have their place, they send the message that we only appreciate worldly beauty. Instead, start complimenting people on their inner beauty. “I really appreciate how honest you always are” or “Thanks for being such a dedicated and hard worker” or “I love that you always sincerely ask me about my day”. These kind of compliments build people’s self-esteem not based on body image, but rather based on inner qualities that they can continually develop. As you sincerely compliment the inner qualities of others you will begin to admire inner beauty much more than outer beauty, and even notice more inner beauty in yourself.
4. Cut Out Negative Influences
Let’s be real, everywhere we look we see the media telling us how we should look. If you notice that your media use contributes to your feelings of low self-worth, cut it out! Maybe you yearn to be just like that gorgeous model you follow on Instagram, but every time you look at her feed you end up feeling worse about your own body. Maybe you need to stop reading those weight loss magazines or simply cut down the time you spend scrolling on Facebook. If anything in your life is contributing to negative body image, unsubscribe, delete, throw it away, and cut it out of your life.
SMILE! It’s so simple! Smile smile smile! Even if you think your outfit is horrible, your hair is a wreck, and your make-up is smudged, SMILE! There is something about smiling that makes you automatically beautiful. (My guess is that is has something to do with the fact that God wants us to be happy…) Having a positive attitude and cheering up others will give you the confidence and beauty that you are seeking, a kind of inner beauty that stems from Christ and doing His work.
I know that each and every one of you is a beautiful person with so much to offer. Finding our own individual worth is part of our journey in this world, and it can begin with learning to love your body unconditionally. Start today!