Looking Up: Body Positive movement brightens self image

By: Tehya Tournier

With the everyday pressures of looking good, it’s very easy to be negative after looking in the mirror, but there’s a movement sweeping the nation to fight back.

The Body Positive movement teaches people how to overcome conflicts and negative emotions when it comes to their bodies and tries to help practitioners lead a happier and more productive lifestyle.

“It means to be proud of your body and not being afraid to tell anyone about it,” sophomore Zoe Bleile said.

Bleile said that she had struggled with multiple eating disorders throughout her life that started as early as fifth grade. She said coming across the body positive movement was one of the greatest things that has ever happened to her.

“It helped me actually be proud of my recovery and be proud of my body,” she said.

Social media, songs and celebrities have taken part in this movement to teach young girls it is OK to feel comfortable in their own skins. Body Posi means to accept bodies as they are and to make everyone — girls and guys — feel positive about themselves.

“You don’t have to go right away. You can start small, but you know, all it takes is self love and a lot of work. Anyone can do it,” Bleile said.

She said the one way she has come to such a positive place is by “fake it ’til you make it” and by starting small then working her way toward feeling beautiful.

“I feel more and more beautiful every day,” Bleile said.

Body positivity and self love can help people overcome their obstacles and feel more confident within themselves.

Bleile said because of today’s society, both skinny shaming and fat shaming exist, and there’s only one way to look beautiful or attractive in order to impress others. It is now more of an issue to both guys and girls. She said she thinks that the society of this generation is in between growing with a Body Posi movement and not accepting it at all within certain groups, but she feels that this generation needs to break the cycle.

“I keep track of the exact day, and it reminds me that this is how many days that I’ve gotten this much stronger, how many days that I’ve begun my journey of self love and, hopefully, my journey will never end,” Bleile said.

For those who want to follow the body positive movement and follow in Bleile’s footsteps to self love, go to thebodypositive.org for helpful tips to stay on track.


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