There has been a lot of celebrities in the news lately who have been talking about positive body images and I couldn’t be more pleased….in fact I’m Pleased as Punch.

One celebrity in particular has stood out to me in regard to the way women look and feel and I think most people would agree with me. Melissa McCarthy has been quoted a TON with all of her awesome view points on the weight issue for women. I have always loved McCarthy since her days playing Sookie on Gilmore Girls, then I fell even more in love with her when she played Megan in the movie Bridesmaids. She is who she is and she rocks it and she tends to play women who are the same way.

Obviously this post is not about McCarthy, or even about celebrities or media. It is about something so much more important, something that I feel passionate about and that’s having a positive body image.

I think women feel the brunt of unrealistic body ideals but we are not alone, men have unrealistic standards to live up to as well. (I don’t know about you but if I were a man, I know I wouldn’t have a six pack and buns of steal like a lot of male celebrities). So, while most of my thoughts are geared toward women in the post, because let’s face it, I am a woman so I tend to speak of myself in such a way, but I want any of my man readers to understand that I don’t feel like women are the only people who struggle with the issue of body image.

It’s not a fat or skinny issue….

Solace-in-a-small-town-body-image-porkchopI am not ‘overweight’ according to those handy little BMI charts provided by our doctor, you know the ones where you find your height and connect it to your weight where you find that magic window of ‘healthy weight’. But, that does not mean that I don’t feel unattractive sometimes; especially since being pregnant and giving birth, but that is an issue for another time – trust me….

I think the media portrays women in a magic window of what beautiful should be, too. Although, it’s not the same as having a healthy BMI which provides a variance of a few pounds to fit in to. Rather, the media gives us one body type to be and if you’re not that, you’re not ‘hot’ or ‘sexy’ or ‘beautiful’.

Girl, let me tell you even though I fit into that ‘healthy window’ given by my doctor….I certainly do NOT fit in that ‘beauty window’ given by the media. I think most people you meet probably don’t. But, some people do; everyone is different and THAT is what makes you beautiful. The fact that you are not the same as the next person, that’s what makes you beautiful. Heck, if we all looked the same it would be really hard to get a date (am I right? What would make us stand out to that one special person?) God created us all different for a reason.

That’s why I am saying body image is not about being ‘fat’ or ‘skinny’ it’s about being comfortable in your own skin. To some people I might be considered ‘skinny’ and to others I might be considered ‘pudgy’ or ‘unfit’ because I don’t have a flat tummy. Well, you know what, I can make my stomach look like a butt and I am proud of that. solace-in-a-small-town-body-image-quote

I have known girls who are considered ‘skinny’ and are ridiculed for that and I have known women who are considered ‘fat’ and they are bullied for that, too. How are we ever going to win when things like that are going on?

We need to change society’s way of thinking…

…and it starts with YOU. Whether you are a girl on a playground watching someone else get teased for the way they look, or you are a teenager in the mall comparing yourself to other girls, or a woman who feels like they will never look good enough. The change starts with us!

I have times where I look in the mirror and think, I could look better. Or I flip through a magazine and think, “I wish I looked as good as Jennifer Aniston in a bikini.” But, for the most part I am okay with the way I look.

Honestly, I am my own worst critic. When I go to the mall I don’t sit there and think ‘Wow that women is fat,’ or ‘Oh, she is just too skinny.’ So I have to remind myself that people probably aren’t doing the same to me.

We need to be there to support each other rather than participating in this competition that has women pitted against each other – we are on the same team here, ladies.

When you are a girl in school seeing another girl being picked on for the way they look or dress stand up for her, or if you are maybe a little shy go up to the girl later and boost her confidence with a compliment. Rather than comparing yourself to other girls in the mall, spend that time reminding yourself of your positive features.

But, most importantly how about instead of defining or labeling one another by our body types or the way we dress, we define each other by our spirits, our hearts and our personalities. Wouldn’t that be a lot more rewarding for everyone?

Health and healthy body image….

So when it all boils down to the bare bones, it should be about how we live our lives and how we treat others rather than how we look to each other. There are ‘skinny’ girls our there who might be looking in the mirror wishing they were curvier, there might be ‘pudgy’ girls looking at skinny girls hoping to be more like them and there might be ‘fat’ girls hoping to be ‘pudgy’. Whatever it might be, it’s not a healthy way to live our lives.

I am all for trying to lead a healthy lifestyle. Lose a few pounds to feel better. Eat healthier if you need to. Go for a run to get those endorphins pumping. Health, fitness, etc…this is all good stuff. But losing weight to try to fit an unrealistic standard, that is so not okay.

You are perfect just the way you are! Because it’s the person you are, not the way you look, that matters at the end of the day.

Keep that in mind each morning when you look in the mirror.

Be your own cheerleader….

The most important thing is that you don’t beat yourself up. You are the one person who should always be on your own side (What? Does that even make sense? Whateve.)

Let’s talk about this!

What makes you feel beautiful? What is your favorite part about yourself? What do you do when you start to feel your self-confidence waning?

14 thoughts on “Pleased as Punch About Our Paunch: My Two Cents on Body Image

  1. Shann Eva

    I totally agree. I’ve been trying to eat healthier to feel better about myself, not to be super skinny like a celebrity. My brother has 4 daughters, and I’m so proud of the way he’s teaching them to be proud of their body shape, no matter what it is.

    1. Lacey Post author

      Hello, thanks for stopping by!
      I think that is so great that your brother is teaching his daughters to be proud of their bodies, and themselves, no matter what! That’s where it all starts. It’s important to talk to kids about this kind of stuff too!
      Lacey recently posted…7 Tricks To Get Your Housework Back On TrackMy Profile

  2. Kristen

    I needed this today, thank you. It’s so hard not to try to live up to everyone’s standards (especially after the few extra pounds I gained after getting married!). If I lose weight it should be because I want to be healthier not so I can fit in anyone else’s box of what beauty should be. Thank you so much. <3

    1. Lacey Post author

      Hey Kristen!
      It is so hard not to try to fit into what other people expect or what we think everyone expects. I have found that when I try to get healthier for myself, it becomes a lot easier than starting it for the wrong reasons! You are beautiful just the way you are girl!
      Lacey recently posted…7 Tricks To Get Your Housework Back On TrackMy Profile

  3. Inez

    I love this post! I have always struggled with my weight but, for some reason, I have never felt bad about my body like I do now almost one year after having my son.(Even though I have actually been heavier in the past.) This was a great reminder for me today!
    Inez recently posted…4 Ways to Support Your Friend, The BloggerMy Profile

    1. Lacey Post author

      Hi Inez, I’m glad this was a good reminder for you too. I think it was a pep talk for myself as well. I have been struggling a bit since giving birth, it’s crazy how much a woman’s body changes through pregnancy and giving birth. It’s a lot to adjust to, I think.
      Lacey recently posted…7 Tricks To Get Your Housework Back On TrackMy Profile

  4. Karyn

    I’ll admit that I have some really messed up thinking in the area of weight—not for others—Like you, I am not sitting at the mall evaluating the women who pass by me–but I am ALWAYS evaluating myself. I come from an obese family, where as a young girl, I saw my mother hide and gorge on food. I saw the way people looked at her, I heard the unkind comments of school kids and I vowed at a young age that I would never be like that. It led me down a slippery slope with diet and exercise. I am healthy, but my mind still plays tricks on me and my self-perception is negatively skewed. This battle that we as women have to fight starts at a young age, it starts with mamas realizing that their little girls are watching them and listening to their self-talk. We have a really big responsibility! I loved this post!
    Karyn recently posted…Dear Baby I AbortedMy Profile

    1. Lacey Post author

      Thank you so much for sharing that Karyn! It does start at such a young age for most of us, deciding how we need to be often starts from our upbringing.
      I pray that all the momma’s out there find the right words and actions to help raise up girls with positive body images!
      Lacey recently posted…7 Tricks To Get Your Housework Back On TrackMy Profile

  5. Alexie Flook

    so true! What a great and inspiring post for women! I loved it! Its so easy to feel like youre the problem but really society is!! Marilyn Monroe wasnt tiny and she was a beauty icon!

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