To many of us, the phrase “body image” is like saying the “B” word- it’s a nasty derogatory thing. But it doesn’t have to be, and it shouldn’t be! So let’s take it back and show your kids how you are a Body Positive Mom!
I’ve talked about mom body image before, this is something that I feel very passionate about.
READ: What Real Moms Look Like
You might have stretch marks, varicose veins, extra weight… or maybe something else. But we shouldn’t be ashamed of it. We should celebrate it. Because to be very frank…
Moms have a HUGE impact on how our kids view us and view others.
And that is something that I try to remember everytime I look at myself in the mirror or in a photo and see my flaws. If I’m lucky, I quickly snap out of it and stop that defeating thought process that tries to keep me down.
My a-ha moment happened when my oldest was only one. I was looking at pictures of myself at a lake in Minnesota from a recent family trip. I could hear that negative narrative in my head,
“Oh my gosh. I’m so fat.” It was then that I stopped myself, “No, this isn’t going to happen this way. I’m going to break the cycle.” My daughter could never, never see me be horrible about my body or say anything horrible about my body. I’m going to change this now! It’s still a work in progress (stopping that negative self-talk).
We recently visited with Carly Anderson of Lipgloss and Crayons who shared her story with us about her big experience and how her hashtag #Justwearthesuit started a community.
What started as a hashtag to keep track of her bathing suit photos (which was another whole journey) became so much more to so many women.
She shared, “It kept coming back to it over and over again, and I finally was like, “You know what? I’m just going to do like a little thing. I’ll ask a couple of my blogger friends, we can all post together. And if other people want to participate, maybe like 10 people will do it and we can move on with our day.” That is not what happened. It took off like wildfire and became a community hashtag, which I am extremely proud of because it became a place where women could connect with each other to talk about their body image issues versus just connecting with me.”
And that’s just a glimpse into how her mission to help moms empower themselves and their children through body confidence, female empowerment, education has continued to grow.
So how do we help raise kids to be body positive when our society is constantly throwing in their face what they “should” look like?
Here are 5 easy ways you can be a Body Positive Mom:
Arm your kids with the tools to fight body image shaming.
There are so many ways that you can do this. Take away the power of “the number”. So many of us determine how healthy we are based on our weight, but that is only one factor. Another tool is to avoid negative self-talk. Our children are watching us and listening to us, so any negative self-talk they hear us do, they will likely start a dialogue of in their heads as well.
Focus on what your body can do (not related to appearance).
You can run!
You can swim!
You can dance!
There are so many wonderful things that your body can do! When you think about what it can do, what you want it to do- what it actually looks like seems a bit trivial. Who cares if you’re only 5 feet tall if you are a force to be reckoned with on the basketball court?
Find something that you like about your appearance.
This one can be hard for some of us. I know. It may be hard because you see it as bragging. Or for others, it may be hard because they literally cannot think of anything they like about their appearance. But I can assure you that you have many wonderful, BEAUTIFUL things about you!
Compliment another person.
This means so much to everyone. How do you feel when a total stranger gives you a compliment? I know for me, it often fills my cup. So take a moment every day to compliment some stranger you see. Again, our children are watching our every move and what they see us doing often becomes their own habits.
REWIRE the BRAIN to focus on the positive instead of the negative.
This one is probably the easiest, even though it sounds hard.
Because if you have already done the other items before this, then your brain is already rewiring itself! If you are looking for the positive attributes about both yourself and in others, your brain will start automatically going in that direction- looking for the positive!
None of us are perfect and chances are you won’t remember all 5 of these things every day, but even if you remember a couple every few days you too can stop making body image a bad thing, and start being a body-positive mom!
Resources we shared:
The best mom is a happy mom. To better take care of you, download our No Guilt Mom mindset here . These reminders will help you second guess less, and feel more confidence every day in your parenting.
- Empowering Kids: The Untigering Approach to Parenting Transcript
- Podcast Episode 241: Empowering Kids: The Untigering Approach to Parenting with Iris Chen
- The Difference Between Gratitude and Toxic Gratefulness in Motherhood Transcripts
- Podcast Episode #146: How to Parent Like a Spy with Christina Hillsberg
- Podcast Episode 116: Six Coping Skills That Will Change Your Kids Lives
- Podcast Episode 112: What is Social Justice Parenting?
- Podcast Episode #98: Talking about the Birds and the Bees with Brittany McBride
- Podcast Episode 86: Parenting on the Same Page with Amy McCready
- Podcast Episode 72: How to Reclaim Your Joy as a Mom
- Podcast Episode 61: How Logical Consequences are More Effective Than Punishments at Home
- One Simple Skill Your Kids Should Master to Deal with Mean Kids
- 5 Tips to Calm Your Anxiety