If you are someone who feels that at your age or at this time in your life, you cannot wear a 2-piece bathing suit, here are my tips on how to shift your mindset. It's not about wearing a 2-piece bathing suit but about how you feel about YOU.
- Take age out of the equation. Somehow in our society, we have been conditioned to think that when we reach a specific age, we need to dress according to that number. While I believe clothes should be chosen wisely according to your shape and size, there is definitely room for "playfulness." Experiment with various styles, colors and textures. Become daring!
- Begin an exercise program that targets your abdominals. While exercise should be something you do most days of the week, if that hasn't happened, think about starting with baby steps NOW. Start by stretching every day. Engage your abs at all times during the day. Stand in front of a mirror and let everything hang out; then, suck it all back in as if you are wearing a corset and lengthen out of your waist. Stand tall and try to maintain that posture throughout the day. Eventually you will be standing tall without giving it much thought.
- Affirm your goals. Put up post-it notes each day to remind you of what you want to achieve for yourself. Write out some positive quotes to keep you inspired. According to Dr. Carmen Harra, affirmations help purify our thoughts and restructure the dynamic of our brains so that we truly begin to think nothing is impossible. For example, you might write.. Today, I abandon my old habits and take up new, more positive ones.
- Be confident. Don't compare your body to anyone else's body. You have been given your body to nourish and cherish. Do what you need to do in order to give it wholesome foods, good water, sunshine or Vitamin D, exercise and love.
- Be daring. Yes.. try on that appropriate 2-piece bathing suit and don't judge yourself. Find areas that you may want to target and work on them. This is a good way to set goals. Try the bathing suit on in March and then work towards getting in shape by June. Even if you do not reach your goal, you will have benefited from giving your body lots of good food & exercise which will take you to another level in your overall heath.
- Stay the course. If you do not feel comfortable in, or have no desire to wear, a 2-piece bathing suit, that's okay. Setting goals and having discipline to reach them are the beginning of change. Don't let negative thoughts ruin your progress. Realize that you may have been in a slump for awhile and that you need to develop this new "muscle." It takes a shift in our thinking to bring us to a new and different level.
So, as you can see, it's not so much about wearing a 2-piece versus a 1-piece bathing (or, for that matter, deciding a bathing suit is not for you at all), but it's about shifting your thoughts to more positive ones about how you can take care of your body. Give yourself the gift of love beginning now. LOVE YOUR BODY -- LOVE YOUR LIFE -- LOVE YOURSELF.