Are you grateful for your body? Do you realize the human body is the greatest art form in existence? Most people take this amazing gift for granted and complain about the shape of their body, a crooked tooth or heavy thighs, for example. Just know that no matter what your body looks like – you will always have things you like about it and things you dislike about it! Even top models do! May be you don’t like your hair but you like your eyes, you don’t like your mouth but you like your skin.
One reason people don’t like their bodies is because they compare themselves to a fantasy of how they think they “should” look – perhaps by comparing themselves to pictures of women in magazines or showgirls on TV. I know of one lady whose husband also had a fantasy ideal about how he thought his wife should look. After his many criticisms towards her and out of fear of losing him she had plastic surgery which proved to be the worst thing she could have ever done as it all went wrong.....
Instead of criticizing your body ask how you can be grateful for it? How has it served you? Has it given you beautiful children? Have your legs allowed you to walk in all the various parts of the world you’ve visited? Do your legs take you to the bathroom? Has your mouth spoken words of wisdom and inspired others? And know - the things you dislike about your body are going to serve you just as much as the things you like.
Even for a seemingly beautiful woman who had a debilitating stroke. At first she went into deep depression but eventually was able to see how the stroke actually helped her and benefitted her. She suddenly realized how her life before the stroke was actually quite superficial and empty. It had been solely about how she looked or dressed and with whom she mixed. She also realized how expensive and arduous a lifestyle she’d been running in order to maintain her shape and to look good, and how much it had cost her not only financially but also time wise and energy wise. When she realized that at 55 she was still trying to look 21 and it was all about physical beauty, the stroke in fact was a “gift” to her to give herself permission to love herself (probably for the first time in her life) for whom she is today!
By asking the right questions and writing down all the benefits (hundreds of them) of how it was actually assisting her in her life today and what she could do with it, she began to feel the gift in her heart and became grateful for the stroke. You see we can alter our lives by altering our perceptions and attitudes. She no longer said “Why is this happening to me?” She began to ask “How can I use this to my advantage?” There is no loss of any trait in life, just transformation and her “beauty” had just changed form. From the former physical outward beauty came a new set of beauty – the beauty to slow down and be present, the beauty to open your heart, the beauty to have openness towards others, the beauty to share, the beauty to inspire, the beauty to smile and help other people, etc.
Another stunningly beautiful woman completely lost her hearing owing to a virus she’d contracted. She too was deeply depressed for four years as she felt completely cut off from the world and as a result lost her outer radiance and, therefore, her beauty. Her husband also left her. When she wrote down, again and again, how this situation helped her and how she could use it to her advantage she realised it too was a gift! She now knew what she wanted to do in life and with this realisation her radiance, beauty and vitality returned.
So no matter what your physical body is like, just be grateful for it and see how all parts of it are serving and assisting you. In fact it’s not your body that causes you pain and misery, but your thoughts about your body. By being grateful for it and its myriad of powerful gifts – you will become empowered and it will make the difference between experiencing wellness or depression/ illness in your life.
Everyone has beauty somewhere! Recognize your own unique form of it, stop comparing and minimising yourself to others and allow yourself to shine!