6 Loving Ways To Broadcast Body Confidence

Body confidence is about self-esteem, self-love, and self-care. Also: how good your bra fits and how good your posture is. Click through for 6 easy ways you can show people you have body confidence today!

This guest post comes to us via Sally McGraw of Already Pretty fame.  She writes about style, body image, and self-love every single day.  

In a culture that encourages women to engage in trash talk about their own bodies, in which body confidence is an act of bravery, it can be daunting to consider broadcasting pride in your own physical form.

But you CAN do it, even in the face of an oppressive environment, reluctant peers, and your own hesitation. I swear! It’s true!

Broadcasting body confidence doesn’t have to mean wearing an “I Love My Body” tee shirt or responding to every compliment by say, “Oh, I know.” There are a million tiny ways that you can tell the world you love your body, just as it is. Click To Tweet

And in doing so, you may just encourage other women to follow suit.

6 Loving Ways To Broadcast Body Confidence

1. Watch your posture

Posture and pride are visually linked. Walking tall is the simplest, quickest way to show anyone who observes you that you are confident and self-assured.

Of course, good posture can convey pride about any number of personal traits, many of them non-physical. But it stands to reason that being mindful of your body‘s position as a means of expressing self-confidence will be linked, at least in part, with valuing that same body.

2. Smile

Body confidence can certainly be of the fierce, aggressive sort. But my experience leads me to believe that most folks who’ve accumulated some self-love feel serene and grateful. Smiling at others shows them that serenity and gratitude.

Sure, it’s incredibly indirect and the vast majority of onlookers won’t immediately think, “That woman must be smiling because she loves her body!” And yet those who are locked in constant battle with self-loathing seldom smile directly at others and may feel less inclined to smile overall.

Some days suck and some people piss us off, so I’m not advocating big, fake smiles 24/7. Just consider the powerful messages of calm confidence that are broadcast in a simple smile.

3. Give compliments

What now? You’re asking how telling OTHERS that they look fabulous will prove that you feel fabulous yourself? Yes. Jealousy is often borne of a fear of shortage. You envy what someone else has because hey, if they’ve got it, how could there possibly be enough to go around?

By showing your lack of jealousy, you exude self-confidence. Indirectly, you’re saying, “I’m genuinely happy for you! Also, not threatened because I’m aware of my own self-worth!” Giving compliments not only spreads good karma and boosts the self-confidence of others, but it shows observers that your generosity of spirit stems from personal pride.

4. Accept – and append – compliments

When someone compliments you, do NOT deflect. At the very least, respond with a heartfelt, “Thanks!” And once you’re feeling a bit bolder, try appending your responses. If a friend tells you she likes your dress, say, “Thanks! I just adore how it makes my legs look.”

If a peer tells you she loves your shoes, say, “Oh thanks, lady! I feel so gorgeous and powerful in these … like I could take over the world!” If a friend tells you your hair looks amazing, say, “You are so sweet! I feel like my hair is one of my best features. Thanks for noticing!”

5. Don’t engage in body bashing

We women spend a lot of time and energy talking about how much we wish our acne would clear up, our upper arms would get firmer, our wrinkles would vanish. In fact, we often we do it without thinking. Those thoughts, emotions, and words flow forth from us like breaths the moment we’re among friendly comrades. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

One of the best ways to curb trash talk is to have some sit-down talks with your closest friends and tell them you’re trying to stop. It may be most effective to couch it all in terms of your own feelings: “I worry about how it affects us.” Or “I feel like this kind of talk erodes my self-confidence.” Or “I’m just exhausted by going over these issues so constantly.” Start issuing moratoriums on body bashing when you gather with your besties.

And, perhaps most importantly, don’t take the bait. As difficult as it will be, do not cave and bash your own body when you get verbally set up to do so. You know the drill. Your girlfriend says, “Ugh, I feel so fat and gross. If only I had thin calves like yours.”

And you’re supposed to say, “No way! I hate my calves. I wish I had your gorgeous hair …” Yes, there are some compliments floating around in there, but they’re encased in sentiments of self-loathing and jealousy. When your buddy starts the ball rolling, be blunt. Say, “Stop. We’re both gorgeous, luminous, worthy women. Just look at us!” And move the conversation onward and upward.

6. Dress confidently

This will mean something different to each of you, but regardless of how it manifests it is definitely a best practice. As always, this is no mandate: Some days require hide-inside clothes, comfy clothes, or no clothes at all.

But as often as you can, dress in clothing that makes you feel amazing. Colors that bring out the highlights in your hair. Choose styles that highlight what YOU love best about your figure. Wear shoes that make you walk proudly and confidently. The clothing we wear can be a powerful tool for broadcasting body confidence.

We probably won’t love our bodies every single day. We probably won’t have the confidence and energy to engage all of these tactics every single day.

But if we can try them out even a few times a week, they will make a difference. They will build upon themselves and help us nurture that vital seed of body confidence into a gorgeous bloom, and they will subtly show our peers that self-worth isn’t threatening or conceited or abnormal.

Let’s do what we can to broadcast body confidence.  We’ll be helping ourselves while helping others – the best kind of goodwill you can possibly spread.

But I want to hear from you! How do you broadcast confidence and love in your body? I spend the extra $$$ to get perfectly-fitting bras and buy jeans that make my butt look AMAZING. (FYI, these are my go-to jeans)

P.S. 13 ways to feel cuter + more confident

photos by Lotte Meijer and Clem Onojeghuo // cc

5 Comments

Shannon

I loved this! I think it's so weird that we tend to commiserate mostly about what we hate about ourselves (or negative things in general) but feel weird about saying positive things because that's bragging. Every point was spot on and I think about them often; the hardest one is not engaging in body bashing, I've started just not responding whenever that kind of conversation goes on.

Reply
FMD

This is my life! Struggles with body image go hand in hand with eating disorder mania. But finding my voice through my blog & finding community through yes&yes and Already Pretty is SAVING my life. Thanks for the support. Read about my adventures if you're so inclined: http://www.facebook.com. One tip: look in the mirror & say I AM MORE THAN MY REFLECTION, GOSH DARN IT!

Reply
Hannah

What a lovely post!

Body-bashing is so commonplace these days that no one really stops to think about how ludicrous it is. Like you mentioned, we all have our bad days but making a conscious effort to be body positive on a daily basis is all it takes to make you feel happier in your own skin and also encourage others to feel that way.

I find I don't really have any concept of what I look like in comparison to other people any more because it's just not that important to me. I am who I am, take it or leave it 🙂

Really glad that posture was the first thing you mentioned. I wish this was something everyone knew about!

Reply
Lauren

I really enjoyed this post! Some great tips here 🙂

I bought a bicycle about 2 months ago and have been riding to and from work every day. It's amazing how much better I feel about myself after less than 8 weeks! It's not a huge effort – half an hour each way on mostly flat ground and I cruise along at a leisurely pace – but I have definitely noticed a change on both how I feel and how I look. While I have always tended to be fairly happy with how I look, I still sometimes feel victim to the green-eyed monster and would subject myself to thoughts like "why can't I have her legs/hair/boobs/skin/arms?"

These days though, there is less of that. Not totally gone (I doubt anyone will ever be completely free of bouts of jealousy!) but because I feel better about myself, my thoughts tend to be more "wow, that chick is rocking that outfit!" and less "ugh, why can't I get away with dressing in those jeans?"

Also, last night I was feeling very positive about life, so I decided I was going to skip dinner and instead made myself a huggggge chocolate sundae….and ate it all, whilst sitting on the couch in my pyjamas watching Law & Order: SVU. And I don't feel the tiniest bit guilty about it 🙂

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