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I still remember when my body issues began. I was probably about 7 or 8 and had been spending the day with my girlfriends and one of their houses. There was a conversation about drinking milk, and I shared that I didn’t really like milk and I never drank it. The girls quickly came to the consensus that I would be thinner and in better shape if I would drink milk, specifically fat free milk.

At 7 or 8 years old, I believed myself to be fat. I wasn’t. I look back at pictures and I had long legs and arms, along with a round belly. No, I wasn’t skinny like my friends were, but I wasn’t fat. Instead of standing up for myself, I believed them and started down a road of body hatred.

Over the years I’ve gained and lost lots of weight, but I’ve never been able to appreciate my body. Most of my weight loss success has come from an ability to berate myself and believing the only way I’ll get anything I want in life is to be thin first.

Now, after so many years of wishing I was thin so I could be happy, I’m deciding to focus on the positive things my body does and has done for me. This change has to begin with my brain, since that’s where all the hate has been living.

Below are 3 things I’ve found to help me stay focused on appreciating my body, as it is right now. I have yet to say “I love you” yet, but I’m working on it, and I can tell you being appreciative feels a lot better than staring in the mirror for 20 minutes everyday poking and flapping every saggy part I see.

  1. Read “The Peachie Moms Guide to Body Love for Moms” by Jen McLellan and Amanda Edwards. It’s an easy read, and really focuses on staying positive about your body. It really reminds you that your body has done really wonderful things in its life, and acknowledging that will free you from the body hate.41AI1nrrUVL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

2. Listen to “Love Your BODcast“. The host Julie is engaging, and gives usable tips for embracing and loving the body you already have, while working to be the best you can be. The episodes are 15-30 minutes and cover topics all women (moms or not) can relate to.

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3. Follow my Pinterest Board “Love Yourself“. I have images of beautiful bodies (not skinny bodies), and words that are motivating to me, and focus on strength and well being, not a number on a scale or size of my jeans.

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I really hope you’ll check out these links out and find them as helpful as I do. Just imagine how much better you would feel, and how much more you’ll accomplish when you remove the self hate from your day!

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