Body positivity. BOPO. It’s the movement of the moment and it fits my body perfectly.
Or so I’d have you believe. Truth is I still hate my body sometimes. I’m led to believe I’m probably the average size in the UK (because whenever I go sale shopping a 14 is a rare trinket to clap eyes on), but I still feel like I take up so much more space than I’ve been allocated on this planet. But, we aren’t talking about that today.
We’re talking about the good days.
We’re taking about the life is too short days.
We’re talking about those elusive, glorious, I don’t give a goddam f**k days.
This guide is based on a series of things that have managed to get me to the point of feeling good in my body. Good enough to not punish it with jeans and long sleeves in the searing 29 degree heatwave that’s still burning away outside.
1. If you can afford it, go on holiday, or to the beach, or to a popular park. Anywhere people just go to relax and sunbathe.
Pop on your sunglasses, open a book to a random page, and just take in your surroundings. I’d always been so concerned about what people would think about me, I never actually took a moment to notice how many people just don’t give a gosh darn damn. That was until I went on holiday in May this year. Beautiful people in bikinis everywhere; big, small, round, square, athletic… Not one of them paying a single toss to anyone outside of their group. Just a sea of people, laughing, having fun, and enjoying the warm Greek sun giving their voluptuous thighs a toast. Absolutely inspiring.
2. Find some bloggers or influencers or BOPO advocates that are around your size and shape.
For me: Helen Anderson and Fuller Figure, Fuller Bust have played a massive part in getting me in my shorts. I just see lot of myself in both, despite them both being just generally confident, rather than specifically body positive. There are hundreds who are specifically body confident though; just search the hashtag #bopo on insta and have a good old perving sesh whenever the mood takes you. Better yet, follow the hashtag.
3. Get yourself something that you cannot wait to wear.
Depending on your preference this could just be a pair of shorts, cami, bikini… Or you might be on Pinterest browsing and building a whole new wardrobe. The idea is not just to show more skin but to wear whatever the hell you fancy. Clothes are fun, they shouldn’t be restrictive or keep you from living your life. For me it was this cute playsuit from H&M that’s been sitting my wardrobe for 2 years unworn.
I rediscovered it. I loved it. It went in the outfit plan for the week. Enough about me; you want something that you’ll be itching to put on as soon as you’ve bought it.
4. Plan your first outing.
How confident are you feeling in your new kickass outfit? You wanna show it off right? So where are you gonna take it? If you’re feeling super fly you could take it shopping for buy more clothes that make you feel this good? (Charity shops are freaking gold mines, and better for the environment). Are you going to the beach to surround yourself with other people who are just enjoying their day with their kickass bods unapologetically existing in the world? Maybe it’s changing in the communal changing area of the gym? If that’s still scary, how about a walk where you won’t see many people, in the woods, or the marina? Hell, if you want to sit in the garden alone I AM HERE FOR IT. GO YOU. WHAT AN AWESOME STEP TO HAVE TAKEN.
5. Be proud of yourself, you’re allowed.
Can you believe what you’ve just achieved?! I’m so proud of you! Take as many bloody pictures as you can and want because this is a moment to commemorate!
I would say “simple” but we all know that’s not the case. It might take you days weeks, years to get to step 3 even. And that’s okay. It can take time and if your mental health is going to take a battering over it slow it down and do it in your own time.
Life is short. Buy shorts that are shorter.