The movement in support of body positivity for women of all shapes, sizes, body types, and skin colors has gained significant ground over the past few years and continues to rise in popularity.
That being said, recent statistics still estimate that only 4% of women truly believe that their bodies are beautiful just the way they are. If you want to help change that perspective, here are three easy ways that you can stand up for body positivity this year and help push the tide toward body-confidence and higher self-esteem for all women.
- Support Plus Size Models
The body of the average woman in America fits within the range of plus sizes. So why are 99% of the models you see smiling in magazine spreads and strutting down runways wearing a size 0?
Plus size women are not a minority in the U.S., but they are certainly treated like one in the media. Curvy models who flaunt their sexy figures in plus size teddies, plus size swimsuits, and other revealing sexy plus size styles deserve just as much attention and recognition as women whose tiny figures match the body type that is expected for top models.
When you see images of plus size models on social media, share or retweet them. Follow blogs and subscribe to magazines that feature plus size models exclusively. Showing your support for plus size models and helping boost their recognition in the mainstream modeling industry can help you contribute to the body positivity movement in a way that leads to real, lasting societal change.
- Stop Putting Yourself Down
You might think you live your life in support of body positivity if you don’t judge other women and believe everybody you see on the street can be beautiful no matter what size it is. However, if you’re still putting yourself down for the way your own body looks, you’re a part of the problem. It’s much harder to accept and embrace your own body just the way it is than to see the beauty in bodies of other women. We tend to be our own worst critics.
The next time you’re shopping for lingerie and staring at your naked body under those unforgiving fluorescent dressing room lights, stop yourself from making your usual criticisms and force yourself to give your body loving compliments instead. Reversing your negative thought patterns about your own body takes a lot of work, but it’s easier to support other women and the body positivity movement as a whole once you stop putting yourself down.
- Ban Body Shaming from Your Vocabulary
If you’re interested in supporting the body positivity movement, you probably don’t intentionally participate in body shaming. However, you might still use body shaming language freely without even realizing how harmful it can be. Common body shaming terms and phrases that might still be a part of your regular vocabulary include “overeating”, “morbidly obese”, “big boned”, and “thunder thighs”.
These words and phrases are very common, but they can do a lot of damage to the feelings and confidence of those who feel targeted by them. When you hear other women or people of any gender using these terms and phrases—whether intentionally or innocently—speak up and gently correct them to spread positive change beyond yourself.