Body Positivity & the Holidays
I have a tub of wrapping paper, ribbons, and bows in the corner of my living room. My craft table is covered with layers of glue, paint, and glitter from hours spent handcrafting gifts to bestow on my besties. It’s the holiday season; a giving time of year, a beautiful time of year.
But it also can, for many reasons, be a hard time of year, especially when it comes to self-love and body image. Scrumptious holiday foods eaten with family often come with a side dish of unwanted comments about one’s body, commentaries about elastic waistbands and dieting run rampant, and people are ramping up for those “new year, new you” resolutions. It can be hard to love one’s body, especially at this time of the year.
So this holiday season, while you’re putting together gifts for all the loved ones and important people in your life, why don’t you remember that most important person of all – yourself? – and add your name to your gift list. Here are a few body-positive gifts that you can give yourself this season!
Body Positive Gifts that Boost to Your Body Image
One of my favorite ways to boost my body image is to surround myself with pictures of bodies of all different shapes and sizes. This holiday season, give yourself the gift of diversifying the bodies you see.
Free: Branch out on your Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and follow radical body-positive and fat-positive folks on social media. Try adding these ten accounts to your Instagram this holiday season (heads up that some of these are NSFW):
Radical Body Positive Instagram Accounts
Low-Cost Body Positive Gifts: This holiday season surround yourself with artwork of a variety of bodies. Buy yourself a sticker for your laptop such as this Body Glory Holographic Sticker from Greenhousefatty or this You Are Valid one from HildeAlanta. Alternatively, get a print from your wall like “Body Positivity” from Curvygirlsrule, or any of the amazing pin-ups from Sexyfation.
Splurge A Bit: Why not let that artwork of beautiful amazing bodies be of…you? Book a boudoir photo shoot, or contact someone like Sexfation to do a commissioned piece of artwork of you!
Another great gift you can give yourself is the gift of introspection. Give yourself the time and space to really focus on you and growing your self-love.
Free Body Positive Gifts: Grab a spiral notebook, your old journal, or even just some scratch papers you can staple together, and get in the habit of journaling. Focus on writing things you’re grateful to your body for, or positive mantras to tell yourself throughout the day.
Low-Cost: Treat yourself to a book such as the “Your Body is Not an Apology Workbook: Tools for Living Radical Self-Love” and invest some time and energy into loving yourself more.
Splurge A Bit: Sign up for a coaching session with Mary Lambert to talk about issues of body shame, or find a life coach or therapist who you can work with.
Now, and moving into the new year, is a great time to begin exploring our relationship with food. There are many ways to do this, but one place I suggest starting is with mindful and intuitive eating.
Free Body Positive Gifts: Do some research about intuitive eating, and consider joining an online group of others who are also on this journey (there are a number on Facebook). When you’re feeling hungry, ask yourself without judgment what you want to eat, and allow yourself to not only have that food but to savor every bite of it.
Low-Cost: Stock up your bookshelves with some anti-diet books such as “Health at Every Size: The Surprising Truth About Your Weight” by Linda Bacon, “The F*ck It Diet: Eating Should be Easy” by Caroline Dooner, or “Lessons from the Fat-o-sphere: Quit Dieting and Declare a Truce With Your Body” by Kate Harding and Marianne Kirby.
Splurge A Bit: Take yourself on a date to a favorite restaurant or order in from a new place you’ve been wanting to try. Don’t hold back. Order an appetizer, a main course, or a dessert; really pamper yourself as if you’re wooing yourself on a first date. Because, after all, who better to date than ourselves?
Some SELF-Indulgent Sensual Times
What better way to show yourself love than by engaging in some physical acts of self-love? From self-massage to giving oneself the big O, any way we physically engage in sensual acts with our own body increases our comfort with it and can help us to love it more.
Free Body Positive Gifts: Create a playlist for yourself of songs that make you feel alive in your body. These could be songs that make you feel sexy, songs that make you feel strong, or ones that just get the blood pumping. Make it a point to listen to this playlist often and connect with your body while listening to it, be that through sensual dance, through masturbation, or even just through deep belly breaths to ground yourself in the moment while listening. Here’s my playlist if you’re wanting some inspiration.
Low-Cost: Treat yourself with a new lotion or massage oil. Then, take time to really be present with yourself as you massage it into different body parts. Start with parts of yourself you feel positive or neutral about, and work your way towards those parts you’re more self-conscious about. As you work the lotion into each part of your body, tell yourself the things you love about that part and the things it does for you.
Splurge A Bit: Invest in a new toy for some spicy times with yourself. These are available in a range of prices and styles. A few I’ve been enjoying lately are the LELO Ida Wave, and the Volta (for a bit more of a splurge).
However, you choose to celebrate this season, be sure to remember yourself through it, and the wonderful gift that you are!