Empowerment: a word that hits close to home, especially for women. In a time where technology and society has advanced to such great heights, you'd expect that every woman has a stable sense of self-worth and body image, but looking at reality, this couldn't be farther from the truth.
As female bodies become a staple subject in mainstream media and advertising, women are taught that the husks we live in are to be consumed. We are taught, early on, that parts of us should be lightened, tightened, enhanced, and reduced. We are sold the lie that the external shell matches the inner character, and that we are to do everything in our power to make it look its best. The main message is this: we are never to settle comfortably in our bodies, because some tweaking must always be done.
With almost everything around us dictating how a beautiful woman should look like, it's no wonder girls as young as 7 years old are wanting to go on diets, girls at age 16 are asking their parents for cosmetic surgeries as birthday presents, and some new mothers are grieving at their weight gain instead of celebrating the new life they just birthed.
This is where body acceptance becomes powerful. Its messaging so strong, it has become a movement.
Body acceptance means you are enough. It tells you that your body is more than just an ornament to be looked at. It encourages you to view your body as an instrument to fully experience the wonders of life. It tells you that it is possible to love your body now, just as it is, while striving to work on its health and fitness. It acknowledges that beauty is diverse, that you are unique and special; that you are not meant to look like anyone else but you, and that is empowerment in itself.
Body acceptance isn't a destination. It is a journey that one has to commit to take. It is best experienced with the support and push of loved ones, people who are rooting to see you grow and evolve as a person.
Body acceptance does not promote complacency. If anything, it promotes self-development that stems from love, not resentment. How many times have we used negative self-talk to fuel our desires for change, only to find ourselves back at square one? Hate is never a good motivator. Love is.
To conform is easy, but to go against the status quo is empowerment in itself. Body acceptance, in a way, makes women reclaim their power—to own and embrace their beauty fully, and to live out the confidence that has always been there from wit