The holidays are a time of joy and coming together. But they can also be quite tough, especially for people who struggle with self-image and self-love. In the middle of New Year’s resolutions, fitness promo packages and gym memberships, it’s not easy to focus on what really matters: yourself. What we think of ourselves and how we take care of ourselves is crucial for a happy life. Here are 5 tips to help live your healthiest life:
Ditch the guilt
A lot of people go through the holidays – and through life – with an overpowering sense of guilt on their shoulders. It may be about what they’ve eaten, how they look, or simply because they are not giving into the “new year – new me” craze. Even if you’ve eaten a lot more over the holidays and gained weight – there’s no need for a diet! Your body will go back to its natural weight over time, as you continue with your regular eating habits. Remember that diet plans designed to help with weight loss don’t work in 95% of cases, so just listen to your body, and eat as much as you feel comfortable with. If you are unsure whether you are getting all of the vital nutrients, you can talk to a nutritionist to see if there’s anything you need to change.
Follow BoPo leaders
The body positive community is growing each day, and filling your Instagram feed with diverse bodies and positive messages will help you fall in love with yourself. From models like Iskra Lawrence and Ashley Graham, to role models like @bodyposipanda and @chooselifewarrior, everyone has the same message: you are worthy of love and respect no matter what size you are. So, instead of following a million #thinspiration tags and trying to reach impossible heights, understand that all bodies are good bodies, and let yourself feel good.
After you’ve decided to stop caring about what anyone else thinks about your body, decide on the way you want to look. Some people would feel more comfortable if they weighed less, or wish their bodies looked a bit different. If that’s the case, you can find a good personal trainer that will work with you on your goals. Just remember that whatever you choose to do, you should do it for yourself.
Feel good in what you wear
Forget about buying “goal outfits” for the summer and trying to squeeze into jeans that just don’t fit anymore. There should be no emotions attached to the size on the tag. You can check out body positive stores that have a wide range of sizes and styles that everyone can feel good in.
Adopt healthy habits
People often have a misconception that body positivity excludes exercising and healthy eating. Absolutely not! If going for a run or attending a Zumba class makes you feel great, then you should do your best every time to make it. And if you enjoy eating salads, quinoa and fruit smoothies – all the power to you! Your habits should be about the things that make you feel like you are being the best version of yourself, and they should be healthy in both mental and physical sense. So, make sure that your motives are in the right place, and you will find yourself in a much better head space – and a body that suits your needs.
Maybe not making a slimming New Year’s resolution will feel like you are failing yourself, or the friends you promised to do the “40-day-challenge” with, but you should put yourself and your happiness first, and encourage your friends to do the same. So, make it a resolution that this year, you will fall in love with your body, and do your best to take good care of it.
Brigitte is part of the Contributing Writer Network at Thirty on Tap. To apply to become a Contributing Writer, please click HERE.