Updated: Mar 21
It is sad to realize just how disconnected we are from our bodies. Our bodies are something we use every day. We see it, it helps us move and function, But we are programmed to separate ourselves from our bodies. View our body as something to look down on. We are programmed to believe that our body isn't enough and worthless.
There is the saying to treat your body like a temple. You could look at this in many ways. Many have used this phrase well, others as a way of control. When we are young we don't think much about our bodies. We are still learning how to move it the way we need to. How to walk, talk, or grab things. It's not really until we begin to develop that we start noticing the different aspects of our body and what is deemed “ Beautiful.”
Society likes to play games with our young minds. We could be brought up in a house, pledged by individuals who make it a goal not to love ourselves. Mold it and shape it till we are exactly what they want us to be, insecure, full of self-doubt, looking for external sources for validation.
When I was younger, my mother liked to use “ Reverse psychology” on me—putting that in quotation marks because it was just her way of excusing her abusive tendencies. I was a young girl who developed rather quickly in life. I had breast development starting in 2nd grade, and they were very noticeable by 5th grade the same year I got my period. I was a thicker child; my mother would call me a Fat cow because of this. One day in the car, I was wearing shorts. Your thighs will spread out and become “ Bigger” when you sit. My mother slapped my thighs and made fun of their size. She got my other sibling to make fun of my body as well. She taught me very early that I did not have an ideal body type. I was not good enough, but what happens when you also become a sexual object in others’ eyes?
It developed so quickly that it made it where my body became something people seemed to enjoy physically. They would make comments after comments about how big my breasts were. It doesn't help either that I was SA at a young age. On the one hand, I'm being told that I'm fat, I'm not good enough, I look like a cow. On the other hand, I'm being told that I am desirable and that I'm only good enough when pleasing someone else. I learned quickly that my worth came from external validation. I was never taught how to validate myself or even do that.
All this to say it's a journey. Change is never linear. You go through your ups and downs until it’s finally just stuck. I went through a lot to learn to love myself, and some days, I still find myself looking negatively at myself. Below, I'll give you some tips and tricks that helped me reconnect with myself.
Your Body is A temple:
I mean, your body should make you feel safe, secure—Sacred, meaning you dictate what and who goes near or in your temple. You have to give yourself a choice to put yourself and your wants and needs first. This is the only body you will get in this lifetime. You should see your body as a place of worship. If you don't value your body, it will be challenging to teach others how to respect your body. Take care of your body, your soul, and your spirit. Your Body is your home.
One thing I did to help me learn to love myself is learn about myself. Spend some time in the mirror every day. Pick a self-care day. Do a skincare routine, pamper yourself, use lotion and body oil, do your hair in the style you've always wanted to do. Turn on some music that makes you happy and wants to dance. Do all of this in front of a mirror. Watch yourself be happy, talk to yourself, smile. Be present in this interaction with yourself.
Journaling is a big piece of advice. Sometimes we get wrapped up in our heads. We feel out of control and misplaced. Grab a cute journal and a pen. For 10 minutes, just write. You can use journaling prompts to help guide you towards healing conversations with yourself. You can make a list, draw pictures, whatever helps get the things out of your head and on the paper. Explore your inner thoughts. This is a great way to connect with yourself.
Take yourself on dates:
Treat yourself how you would like others to treat you. Show up for yourself. Treat yourself. You deserve to smile.
These are tools to help you learn to love yourself. It's a journey. Never give up or back down even if it gets complicated. It's ok to have an off week, month, or even year As long as you get back up and start again, You will connect with yourself.
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