Ageing is often perceived as a negative or something to be ashamed of. In 2020 we are evolving in the ways we experience life, how we view life stages and how we release negativity towards our bodies.
I have been surrounded by women who have been fighting the ageism battle since I was a child. The words I hear about hating our bodies as they change is upsetting. Women are calling themselves ugly, fat, saggy, or describing their bodies as ‘worn out’. However, there is now a revolution that fights ageism.
The #bodypositivity movement has been boosted by influencers such as Riley Hemson (@healthychick101) and Megan Jayne Crabbe (@bodyposipanda). With the increasing support of social media accounts, women are becoming more comfortable sharing their bodies. The progress of this movement has meant the inclusion of the term ‘body positive’ into mainstream media and everyday life.
There is also beauty within ageing. The wrinkles we develop show years of empathy and happiness. The grey hairs popping through are streaks of wisdom we have gained by being challenged. Our low-hanging breasts are symbolic of a life full of heavy emotions, both good and bad.
Re-learning the way we think about and see our bodies is a process. This process will take different amounts of time depending on the individual. Everyone is at a different moment in their body positivity journey and we must remember not to compare, as we all have different stories.
Learning to love the way your body looks at 16 or 60 will mean more time for enjoying moments that usually cause some anxiety. Perhaps you won’t go swimming in summer because you are afraid of showing your loose skin, or you feel the need to dye your hair every three weeks to hide the grey hairs from your colleagues. A fight against ageism and society’s ‘normal’ can help empower us to let go of these insecurities.
Re-learning the way we think about our bodies is a process that can take different amounts of time depending on the individual.
Psychologist, author, and life coach Melanie Greenberg says that self-love is crucial to not giving up and causing inner rebellion. “I teach self-compassion to all of my clients, and I am always impressed by how much it can transform their relationship with themselves and promote healthier ways of living,” says Greenberg.
One of Greenberg’s top tips for learning to practice self-love and acceptance of our bodies and actions is to imagine a loved-one saying the same things we say to ourselves. Think about how we would react and compliment them so they understand their beauty. The goal is to repeat this but directed at ourselves. We need to understand the women’s empowerment includes ourselves too.
Self-affirmations work well to teach ourselves about our own beauty. Think about insecurities you may have and reframe them to be compliments. If you don’t like the folds of skin at your waist, tell your yourself every day that they are beautiful. This body positive talk is proven to alter the way you see your body.
Surround yourself in a positive culture that doesn’t care if you develop more wrinkles. Being active on social media or a part of a community group is great place to start. Search the #bodypositivity tag on social media you can find some amazing women to follow, that can help you on your self-love journey.
Here at Good, we believe everybody is beautiful. Beauty is subjective and having strong self-confidence means you ooze beauty from the inside out. We encourage you to give yourself some kindness and compassion as your body changes throughout your life. If you want to read more on self-love, see our article on what self-care really means.