The Self-Confidence Series: Part 3–The Changing and Capable Body
Written by: Marissa
Change is one thing that remains consistent as we navigate through life. Change takes place in all areas; in our life events, relationships, and our bodies. A women’s body is shifting from the moment of her birth. We grow with strength and grace into different stages of our life. As a child, we are unaware of these changes. We do not pay attention to the way our body shifts and how we “fill out” as we grow. The young adult years are crucial towards building our self-confidence. Although our bodies are always graceful, most women have a difficult time acknowledging that grace while transitioning into these changes.
A positive way to look at growing into your body involves shifting your focus from change to capability. Examine everything your body is capable of doing: Running, walking, exercising, loving, hugging, etc. These are all traits making your body strong and uniquely beautiful. When we shift our focus towards capabilities, the outer appearance (if we lack confidence) becomes easier to tolerate.
Our body is a shape-shifter during various milestones. Among these, motherhood is a large change for a women’s body. Pregnancy brings about physical, mental, and emotional changes in all areas of health. Women have difficulty with gaining weight during this stage and with seeing their visible changes (stretch marks, swelling, etc.). The postpartum body is also a major obstacle. Getting the body into its original “shape” prior to childbirth is a difficult task. A number of my friends who have experienced childbirth have gone through this “body depression.” Body depression involves persistent negative thoughts towards the outer self.
As previously spoken about, it is important to focus on the body’s positive capabilities. Giving birth to a child is a gift. The mother has provided new life to earth and cradled it for over nine months. Motherhood is a wonderful capability and privilege for those who wish to have children.
A child will never judge the body of its mother. Rather, it looks to the mother for love, strength, and admiration. Looking at your body through the eyes of love and your child is a beautiful way to transition your thoughts.
We must remind ourselves that we are always capable of making our body healthy again. The power of choice grants us the privilege of making healthy decisions. Even with our body changing, the power of choice makes our health journey even greater. Making decisions to improve your body in the moment will be helpful for long term goals. Ask yourself the question, “What choices will make me feel healthy today and in the long term?” The improvements have to do with more than our food. Postpartum bodies benefit from oils, massages, and other soothing skin remedies. Touch makes people feel beautiful and loved, and helps them experience a different kind of health. We are capable of choosing methods that work for our body rhythm. What capabilities and choices will you focus on to create your best you?