Summer is the time when the amount of clothes we wear seems to get smaller. We trade in boots for flip flops and long-sleeves for crop tops. Our shorts get shorter and the bikinis come out from the bottom of our drawers.
But some of us don't really feel comfortable wearing a bikini at the beach or pool. We're afraid of what other people may think or we just don't like what we see when we look in the mirror.
I'm guilty of feeling like this. In fact, I'm constantly terrified of what people think when they see me. I'm also guilty of not being satisfied with how my body looks when I look in a mirror.
In a few days, I'll be off to the beach and I want to wear my bathing suits without constantly feeling judged. Perhaps you're dealing with the same thing. What can we do to feel much more comfortable and confident in our own skin?
Change Your Mindset
The first step in feeling confident is to target your thoughts. When you look in the mirror, what are some of the things you notice first?
Do you view yourself negatively? Do you immediately start noticing the things that you don't like about yourself?
If you answered yes, then that's a problem.
But don't worry, you can learn to change your mindset so that you start to view things more positively.
How? When you start to notice the things that you don't like, take a minute to notice the things you do like about yourself.
Do you think your eyes are a nice color? Do you have straight teeth without the help of braces? Do you have strong legs or arms?
Ask yourself, which of my features do I like best?
Then go deeper than just your surface. What do you like about your personality?
Are you funny or kind? Maybe you like that you try to be nice even to strangers. Maybe it's that you always try to smile.
When you start to think more positively about yourself, you start to feel more confident.
Learn to Accept Your Flaws
Maybe you weren't blessed with straight teeth or naturally clear skin, but there's only so much we can do to change that. We could go to the dermatologist or try over the counter acne products, but we may never get perfect, clear skin all year round. (Now that would be a dream, wouldn't it?)
But you know what, that's okay.
Now accepting your flaws does not mean that you can't change anything about yourself.
In my case, I may never have perfect skin. A few years ago, I started to break out very badly and I still have the scars to prove it. I accept that about myself, but that doesn't mean that I don't want to prevent future breakouts and even try to clear my scars. It just means that I'm okay with my skin not being perfect at the moment or at times in the future.
If you are overweight and want to be at a healthier weight, then let me tell you something. Don't hate your body. Accept that it may not be in it's best shape at the moment, but know that you have the power to change that. It all starts with loving your body as it is now.
"You Look Good Today"
If you feel like you look great today, then compliment yourself. It feels good when other people compliment your hair or your outfit, right? So why shouldn't you compliment yourself as well?
If you like the way your outfit compliments your body shape or the color of your eyes, tell yourself that.
Your self-worth does not depend on what other people think about you.
It does feel good when people notice your outfit or your hair, but your self-worth shouldn't depend on what others say whether it be on person or online. If you have a social media account, it can be easy for a picture to be flooded with likes and nice comments that lift your self-esteem. But that same picture can also receive a negative comment about how "fat" or "ugly" you look.
Do you see the problem?
The same picture that once made you feel beautiful and good, is now making you feel bad or insecure. So who's right?
It's really not up to those comments or other people to decide. If you feel good about yourself, then embrace it.
Oh, by the way, you look fantastic today.
Surround Yourself with Good People
In order to feel more confident, you need to surround yourself with people that make you feel good about yourself. If you have any toxic friends that make you feel bad about yourself, then they're not good friends and you should get rid of them.
Work on garnering friends who support and care about you and treat you kindly. These friends will make you feel so great with who you are because they will accept you for you.
But you shouldn't just expect them to compliment you or say nice things about you, you should also compliment them. Tell them their hair looks good or that the nail color they picked looks great on them. Be sincere.
The golden rule has always been to treat others how you want to be treated. That includes your closest friends.
You are truly an amazing person. From the way you laugh to how your hair looks when you wake up every morning. Everything about you, although not perfect, is amazing.
I know it's true. Do you?
An important step to being more confident and comfortable in your own skin is to love everything about yourself.
Work on finding happiness within yourself and let that happiness shine.
If you love yourself, you should take care of yourself. Be mindful of what you are putting into your body and what you're feeding your mind. Take a break from social media if you need to, or get the necessary amount of sleep. Eat balanced meals that fill you up and fuel you throughout the day.
Just take care of yourself in whatever way you need to.
We are all beautiful, but sometimes we get so caught up in what others may be thinking about us that we forget it. Instead, we hide our beauty from the world because we don't want their opinions to hurt us. But we can't spend our life cowering away because we're scared about what people may say.
Summer is especially one of the hardest times to be okay with ourselves. Everyone's talking about getting the perfect "summer body" but who are they to say what the perfect summer body looks like? Now, more than ever, is time to love ourselves for who we are, flaws and all.