Do we have to LOVE our bodies?

I was listening to The High Low podcast the other week (an excellent listen which I would thoroughly recommend), and they got to the reader email part of the show, where listeners send in their problems/issues and hosts Pandora  and Dolly answer them. One of the questions was about not wanting to take selfies and the reply really got me thinking, as Dolly touched on something that I've been thinking about recently. She gave a very eloquent answer (listen to it here about 40 minutes in - it's the podcast titled 'The Meme that broke the internet and why we need to talk about periods') but to sum up the bit that i'm referring to, she asked whether we really have to LOVE our selves/our bodies, or whether the notion is problematic as it reduces women to defining themselves by their bodies and not their actions. 

This struck a chord with me as I couldn't agree more. I think this message often just creates the opposite effect. The more and more women are told they have to LOVE their bodies, be happy at any size etc. etc. it just drums home the fact that our bodies are the focus of everything; they are what we should define ourselves by, forget our personality or achievements or interests - if we don't LOVE our bodies and put all our efforts into LOVING our bodies then we are failures. 

Sure, I have days where I think I could lose a bit of weight or can't do up my jeans or eat A LOT of Nutella from the jar then feel bad. 99% of people do. But I don't define myself by it. In general I think my body is great - I have arms, legs and a head, it gets me around and I feel good about myself when I look in the mirror. I do think I'm lucky to have been brought up in a family who are happy in their own skin and never made body image the focus of their life, but I just want all women to realise that it's okay to feel just fine about yourself and your body most of the time. I'm not trying to bash anyone or belittle anyone who has body confidence issues AT ALL, but the message 'oh you should just love your body' - how is that helpful when women are bombarded on the daily with everything that suggests they should do the exact opposite?

The pressure we put on women to feel like they have to think about and talk about their body image 24/7 drives me crazy. If you hate your body - OMG just buy this deodorant/lipstick/pair of jeans and LOVE your body! If you do actually love your body - OMG why are you so up yourself what an arrogant witch! Focusing all your efforts into loving your self suggest women should constantly have to look inwardly for happiness, to focus on yourself ALL the time and ALWAYS put yourself first. But sometimes, you shouldn't put yourself first. Put your mum first, put your partner first, put your cat first. Let's talk about something else for a change. Be a kind person, enjoy yourself, live your life with integrity, and confidence will come as an added bonus.

That last bit turned into a bit of an Instagram quote which is not me at all, but I hope I've made my point. I'd love to hear your thoughts on the subject - do you agree? 


  1. YAS to this. I completely agree. My body shape and the way I feel about it doesn't define me as a person. It's perfectly okay to feel fine about it all. "In general I think my body is great - I have arms, legs and a head, it gets me around..." This quote. T x

    1. Thanks lovely! I'm glad you agree...was nervous I would come across as mean when that totally wasn't my intention x