Coping with Summer Attire

swimsuitWomen and Swimsuits

The invite comes…pool party. Even though you love the people extending the invitation, maybe your first thought is, “I am not wearing a swimsuit in front of her!”  Wouldn’t it be great to just look forward to the fun and not stress about your thighs?  Let’s talk about pulling that off!

Summer is full of opportunities for fun times, pool side conversations, grilled yumminess, and relaxation.  It is such a shame to miss out on enjoying life because you don’t want to have a swimsuit or shorts on in public.  Decide that living in shame ends today! You don’t need to meet your health and fitness goals before you can enjoy each day and even a pool party!  Start changing your mindset today as you work to achieve your physical health goals.  Here are some helpful tips we’ll discuss:

  • Lay down your perfectionism
  • Focus on relationships
  • Practice healthy self-talk
  • Live one day at a time                                                                                                                         

My husband and I will celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary this summer.  I am amazed and grateful that we are able to celebrate by taking a trip to Maui.  I’d be lying though if I said I didn’t immediately think about living in a swimsuit for a week as we were booking our travel!  My self-talk quickly focused on those 5 pounds I’d like to lose.  So, I thought maybe you guys would be able to relate and we might all benefit from some tips and encouragement for feeling good in our summer attire.

Lay down your perfectionism

 

Women are pros at being critical of themselves for every flaw, real or perceived.  We tend to minimize our accomplishments and set our expectations at perfection resulting in disappointment and feelings of failure. Consider this scenario: If your child was upset because he got a B on an exam, would you berate him for a month because she didn’t get 100%? Of course you wouldn’t.  But we often treat ourselves in that way. Despite your best efforts, you may have cellulite, you may forget a friend’s birthday, or you may be derailed by chocolate fudge brownies or the best margarita on the planet. Accept that perfection is not an attainable goal and take credit for each step you take towards a healthy lifestyle.

Focus on relationships

 

When the time comes to don the swimsuit and you are attempting to overcome feelings of insecurity, switch your focus to relationships. The best place to start is to turn off the comparison talk in your head and focus on learning something new about the people you are with. It is good for us to remember that life is short, and people/relationships are much more important than the size printed on the tag inside your shorts. So, get out there and have a good time. Change takes time, make the choices that will propel you towards your goals but keep your priorities in place.

Practice healthy self-talk

 

I can’t stress enough about how huge the impact our self-talk has on our behaviors and moods. Being aware of how you talk to yourself is the first step. With that said, being kind to yourself does not involve justifying your unhealthy choices! It is re-directing yourself towards your goals without name calling or shame. We often say things to ourselves in the privacy of our own head that we would never say to someone else.  You are valuable and deserving of respect all the time, even from yourself!  Confidence begins in your mind, not on the scale.  When you believe in yourself and have healthy self-talk, it is much easier to speak truth to yourself and rise above insecurities when they try to rain on your parade.

Live one day at a time

 

Try to stick to living your life in 24-hour segments instead of trying to do a week or next month today. I recently read a devotional that reminded me how often we borrow concerns from tomorrow! Achieving goals takes time whether it is a week or a year.  Start today by making some short-term and long-term goals to give yourself direction. Then begin stepping in that direction one day at a time. As you progress towards your goals, enjoy the day your are in!  Life won’t wait for you to finish school, lose weight, get fit, or fix your marriage…the days will keep on slipping by.

So…as we jump into pools across the country, let’s have a good time.  Work towards your goals, but enjoy the journey.  Take steps to be healthier in each area of your life, but don’t lose your perspective that life is bigger than just how we look.  Support those women around you too, let’s encourage each other to stay on track by showing ourselves and others grace along the path.

Happy Summer!

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