It's already July, the middle child of the summer season. By now you are probably waist deep in articles, ads and YouTube videos about getting "bikini ready". Small disclaimer about "bikini readiness": it's less to do with the way your body looks in a bikini and more about how you personally feel about your body. Confidence is the secret sauce that makes you "bikini ready". Here's how to get that body confidence.
1. Embrace what is.
Everyone has things that they do and don't like about their bodies. Maybe you curse your broad shoulders for making it hard to pull off dainty summer tank tops, or perhaps you loathe your short legs and full thighs. There are certainly some things that you can change, but there are other things that are sticking around. You are best off making peace with these traits as fighting them does nothing but make you miserable. A crucial component of body confidence has to do with embracing and appreciating the things that make you uniquely you. Next time you look in the mirror, rather than hating on your body, try focusing on the many ways it serves you.
2. Take care of yourself.
One of the best ways to love yourself is to nurture your body with rest, good nutrition and exercise. When you are doing everything that you can to give your body what it needs, it is hard not to feel good about your body. Think about it. When you overindulge in junk food and skimp on sleep and exercise, it's likely that you don't feel that confident about your body. Just as when you've been on a roll, staying active, eating and sleeping well, you're at your best and feel comfortable in your skin. It is easy to forget that you and your body are on the same team- the better care you take of it, the better care your body will take of you in return. Likewise, the kinder you are to yourself, the easier it will be to feel comfortable in your skin.
3. Focus on function over six-packs.
To have solid confidence in your body, you need to appreciate it for all that it does for you. This requires moving past the idea that your body's worth can be measured by the flatness of your tummy or the gap between your thighs. Sure, aesthetic progress is great. I'm all for gym selfies and 12 week transformations. However, true body confidence isn't grounded in the aesthetics. Rather it comes from focusing on appreciation for the fact that your body is working 24/7/365 to keep you alive and pumping. Shifting to this functional perspective of your body means focusing on strength gained rather than pounds lost, seeing food as fuel rather than something to either restrict or overindulge in and marveling at the fact that your body is exactly the way it is because it helped the humans before you survive long enough to reproduce, thus keeping our species around for millions of years.