Love Yourself and Your Body

               February is the month of love, but you don’t have to be in a relationship to enjoy it. Take this time to learn to love yourself,  regardless of your relationship status. With the media bombarding women about their imperfections and what perfect really is, many of us struggle with loving ourselves as we are. Learning to love yourself involves setting goals. Some of these goals could be eating more vegetables, enjoying more fruits, or walking to campus instead of driving. These are all things we have the ability to control that make an impact on your health. Below is a list of ways in which we can love our bodies by Margo Main, a Ph.D. from the University of Santa Clara.

“20 Ways to Love Your Body” by Margo Maine, Ph.D.
Think of your body as the vehicle to your dreams. Honor it. Respect it. Fuel it.

1.         Your body is extraordinary–begin to respect and appreciate it.

2.         Create a list of all the things your body lets you do. Read it and add to it often.
3.         Become aware of what your body can do each day. Remember it is the instrument of your life, not just an ornament.
4.         Create a list of people you admire: people who have contributed to your life, your community, or the world. Consider whether their appearance was important to their success and accomplishments.
5.         Walk with your head held high, supported by pride and confidence in yourself as a person.
6.         Don’t let your weight or shape keep you from activities that you enjoy.
7.         Wear comfortable clothes that you like and that feel good to your body.
8.         Count your blessings, not your blemishes.
9.         Think about all the things you could accomplish with the time and energy you currently spend worrying about your body and appearance. Try one!
10.     Be your body’s friend and supporter, not its enemy.
11.     Consider this: your skin replaces itself once a month, your stomach lining every five days, your liver every six weeks, and your skeleton every three months.
12.     Every morning when you wake up, thank your body for resting and rejuvenating itself so you can enjoy the day.
13.     Every evening when you go to bed, tell your body how much you appreciate what it has allowed you to do throughout the day.
14.     Find a method of exercise that you enjoy and do it regularly. Don’t exercise to lose weight or to fight your body. Do it to make your body healthy and strong and because it makes you feel good.
15.     Think back to a time in your life when you felt good about your body. Tell yourself you can feel like that again, even in this body at this age.
16.     Keep a list of 10 positive things about yourself–without mentioning your appearance. Add to it!
17.     Put a sign on each of your mirrors saying, “I’m beautiful inside and out.”
18.     Choose to find the beauty in the world and in yourself.
19.     Start saying to yourself, “Life is too short to waste my time hating my body this way.”
20. Eat when you are hungry. Rest when you are tired. Surround yourself with people that remind you of your inner strength and beauty.