What if we decided to really just enjoy and love what we already have? To celebrate and love our bodies, not change them. Katy Young explores how you can improve your relationship with your body for good…
Eckhart Tolle struck the body beautiful balance when he wrote, ‘Emotion arises at the place where mind and body meet. It is the body’s reaction to your mind.’ It follows that we owe it to ourselves and our souls to strike emotional balance, happiness even, when it comes to finding some kind of ‘body beautiful’ this time around. It’s time to improve your relationship with your body.
For the outdated notion of the perennial ‘Summer Body’ battle has long been documented as toxic practice for both mind and body, the end goal ultimately something that doesn’t and shouldn’t belong to us at all. Whose body is it anyway?
Yours. And once you accept, celebrate, and find confidence in that, suddenly the body beautiful begins to happen, truly. So, let’s start focussing on a little body reconditioning instead. Enjoying, supporting and fine tuning what you have, and even what you think you have.
Your body is amazing; it carries the load emotionally and physically, without you even noticing. Though, it’s likely that our system is doing the heavy lifting without reaching its potential, for both, unless we help it along.
We are designed to move, but as with so many modern afflictions, our day-to-day efforts are not enough. Our anatomy requires that we move in every direction, beyond the morning commute, that walk to the coffee shop, a stretch for the coffee cup, or the click of our seatbelt by our sides. Our muscles are like rubber bands – which means the more we stretch them, the more relaxed and comfortable they become. This might start with a few minutes of stretching every day (done best before bed so that your body won’t sleep and set into any tightness).
When you start to enjoy and find more time for movement, slowly move onto some weight work to refine the movements, and create newfound strength in all the right places. Begin with a weight you can happily lift, in every direction- up, down and around – up to 15 times in proper form. Start with one to two sets, and progress to three before increasing the weight. There is no need to get to a gym, or hire a personal trainer, as at home apps and workouts are just so good but please, do take your time to find a virtual trainer you want to see again. The same goes for your cardio hit; until you’re there, walk or cycle an extra 20 minutes a day, for a completely natural take on balanced movement.
Your new strong form will improve your posture, and therefore your mood and emotional load too. Research shows that posture and mood are directly linked, while exercise itself can help us regulate our emotional responses.
A good, protected, collagen supplement is a good idea now too. As you limber up and out, collagen will ease off joints, and speed up your recovery. While it will also go some way to protecting and boosting your hair and skin. Which is exactly the sweet spot you want to hit.
A new generation of skincare and beauty extols just that. Rather than turning back the clock, stretching both our faces and time, we are now being told to enjoy the face we have as best we can. Exosomes, the latest buzzword ingredient in skincare, are trailblazing this new philosophy to get your best skin yet, ‘your’ being the operative word. Able to encourage the communication between skin cells, exosomes act like the ultimate self-help fix for good skin so that it can hydrate, smooth, and regulate itself.
Meanwhile, facial acupuncture is giving the aesthetic industry a run for its money, by both unblocking energy flow and triggering stress responses in our skin to encourage our own healthy response. Interestingly, wrinkle relaxing treatments are too being side-lined for facial exercises and yoga, which stimulate the muscles and lymphatic system to soften tension, stress, and worry in the face.
Hair treatments both on shelf and in salon, to condition, smooth and nourish, also indicate a wave of your ‘own’ best hair yet – without the need for dyes, styling, and heat. The industry ideal now is not the prolong the life span of your beauty, but its health span.
A quick fix, this is not. But a better, perhaps best long-term, fix? Absolutely. In an age when everything around us feels like it is losing its whirring mind, it feels far more human and healthier to slow down and better up. This isn’t about forcing or faking change fast but finding your real rhythm so that can you maintain your own body beautiful, forever.