Being a mom is one of the best gifts life can offer but it can also be very taxing. We often feel like we need to juggle several different balls at once, which can lead to both physical and mental exhaustion. This constant expectation to always be ahead of the curve not only includes what we do for our families and careers but how we present ourselves. Making sure the house is clean, kids feel loved, work is caught up and our makeup is perfect is overwhelming to say the least.
And it always seems like the bar keeps being set higher and higher. This bar gets set by celebrities that pop out a baby and have a flat stomach the next day or young socialites who can afford to transform their bodies with surgery and expensive trainers. And while it’s clear that most of us will never have the same options these individuals have, we still pressure ourselves to be something more.
The craziest part is that we allow these messages of expectation to actively live in our day to day routine through social media. We choose to fill our feeds with photos that have been staged by a hair and makeup team, to see women who are larger than life because they have the resources, to make ourselves vulnerable to comparison in a competition we’ll never win. We don’t even realize the subtle suggestions seeing these photos can create in our minds.
About a year ago I made a decision to expand the types of people I follow on Instagram. I’ve been a big advocate for body positivity since becoming a mom.
As mothers, our bodies have gone through a lot. They’ve changed. This change may not always feel attractive but the when it comes down to it, they’ve created life.
What’s more rewarding than that?
As I’ve worked toward accepting my body for what it’s become, I’ve started following body positive influencers and it has changed my world. When you start seeing real bodies every day, the pressure goes away. You allow yourself grace and start appreciating all your body has done for you.
You can find accounts that follow this trend by searching hashtags like #bodyposi, #bodypositive, #postpartum, #bbw and #plussize. Keep in mind that some body positive accounts revolve around show off their bodies confidently, like all of their bodies. Just use discretion and follow what you’re comfortable with finding in your feed.
No matter what size you are, you deserve to feel beautiful in the very skin you’re in. May this give you tools for encouragement today.
Oh, and if you’re looking for one more body positive friend, I’d love to connect with you as well. You can find me at @jillianhailey.