Hi sweet angel,
As we continue on our journey as the founders of Beautiful Body we are constantly asking ourselves if what we offer benefits all of you out there; if it’s what you like, if you understand what we are creating, and if it’s powerful enough to make a difference in your lives. Well, as we’ve mentioned over the past couple of weeks, vulnerability is one of the keys to connecting with others. So it’s about time we get down and dirty and shared with you our own fears and failures when it comes to self-love, and most specifically as it relates to our own beauty and body image.
So, let’s get this party started! And what I really mean by that is, let me take a deep breath before I, Marisa, share with you how far I’ve come on my journey for self-love and well-being. Let’s start with 2nd through 6th grade. I was a totally nerdy kid: I was “chubby” and had two big front teeth, just like a bunny. Ha! In the 4th grade, my doctor told me I was overweight and I needed to lose weight. I was so distraught, I cried and begged my parents to let me see another doctor and somehow they let me. I finally hit my growth spurt at 12 and slimmed out, but still had frizzy hair and braces. During high school, I obsessed about my weight by measuring and recording my waist and thighs. For the next 10 years, my weight fluctuated up and down and at the end it was at an all time high. I was working full time, getting my master’s degree and drinking a soda a day to stay awake in class (YIKES!). I was the heaviest I had ever been and I felt completely insecure not to mention, unhealthy and unhappy. And I knew it needed to change. Thanks to the help of an amazing personal trainer, who till this day is one of my best friends, I lost 20 pounds over the course of a couple years and have been able to maintain that weight for the last 5 years through exercise and healthy eating habits. I am have become beyond connected to how food and exercise make me feel emotionally and physically. The funny thing is, even though I've lost weight, it's only been fairly recently that I've realized that I'm not the same nerdy teenager I once was and I can really love myself and the way I look. It's all in our perspective, once that shifts it's all self-love from there.
I, Hannah, am about to get really real with you. Truth is, I lived most of my life as a fear-driven, self-conscious, and depressed girl. I thought my presence didn't matter, that I had nothing unique to offer to the world, and that I wasn't smart enough or pretty enough to deserve much of anything. I lived my life trying to make everyone around me happy, but on the inside I hated my appearance, took drastic measures to get thin, suffered from adrenal fatigue, and thought daily hysterical breakdowns were normal. Eventually, I learned to accept my perceived 'truth' and do my best to hide it from the world and if I was really lucky hide it from myself. But then I learned...we're all the same!! We don't have to be ashamed of our closet fears and weaknesses, because we all have them. Perhaps my challenges and negative self-talk sound different than yours. Maybe you want to be skinnier or for the man of your dreams to love you back or maybe you're unhappy in your job, but are convinced there's nothing you can do about it. Whatever it may be, I want to let you in on a little secret: you are NOT alone! For a long time, I looked to others to validate me and make me feel special. I couldn't love myself unless someone else loved me first. This was the core of my problems: my self-love tank was running on fumes! When I hit this rock bottom low, I finally realized I was the only person that could change my reality. I was the only person that could save me! I finally committed whole-heartedly to give myself what I had been crying out for: a change in careers, doing yoga everyday, spending more time with my family, meditating everyday, and the list goes on. Today my list of self-care is at the top of the priority list and for the first time in my life I am seeing and loving myself as I truly am...for the imperfectly perfect mess of a creation that I am, which to me, is beautiful.
Okay, crazy, right? Yes, even though we all know we have so much to be grateful for, we still have our own insecurities. It’s what we do in the face of insecurities that make all of us unstoppable in creating the life we love. It’s continuing to take action. It’s never giving up. It’s why we’re here for you! We know it can be difficult to stand in the face of the self-doubt and self-deprecating thoughts, but we know it’s possible to pull through it so you can be your most amazing you.