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Self-Appreciation: Best Gift ANYONE Can Give

Today, as I was going through my daily ritual of reading the news as it comes through my news feed, I came across an article to which the subject matter really made me disturbed. This is a positive response of removal of a “new image” of Princess Merida, the beautiful red-headed young woman from Disney’s movie Brave. Disney created a “Sexy Merida” for a coronation ceremony late last week to which caused some major grief, rightfully so.

Disney cartoon Merida holding a bow and arrow

“This one character may not do any damage to a girl’s psychological development, per se,” said Dr. Robyn Silverman. “But Merida joins a barrage of thin, sultry characters for girls, making her yet another facet of our sexed-up, thinned down messaging.” 

As a human (I cannot just say one gender faces this more so than the other), as men and women alike, we are faced with so many body image perfectionist ideas to which we can majorly lose sight of what makes us unique. Everyone is shaped differently. Everyone is colored differently and not one person is like another. Comparison is unfair and how boring of a world this would be if you looked like every other person! BOOOOORRRINNGG!

Take a look at this campaign that Dove created a while back. It illustrates a good point: how we perceive ourselves is not always how others perceive us.

One step in health and wellness is shaping, molding, and being honest with our skewed perception of ourselves. It is embracing our flaws and imperfections as much as it is realizing what our needs are to feel good about ourselves inside and out. Health and wellness is full body endeavor to which takes an extreme amount of honesty, heart, perseverance, and dedication to embrace everything God made us to be. So what if we have large thighs, bags under our eyes or our rear end is “too big”. This is what makes YOU uniquely you. Instead of looking negatively on what you don’t like about yourself, why not say one thing positive about yourself?

Next time you are brushing your teeth and look up into the mirror to clean the excess toothpaste off your lips, try saying something you love about yourself in a positive fashion. This is not to be a vain attempt as much as it is to recognize qualities you possess that have a positive impact. If there is something you do not like about yourself, it is up to you on whether you want to change it. There are means to do so if that is your choice, but before you go changing yourself, appreciate who and what you are first.

I want to challenge each and everyone today to really find self-appreciation. To me, that is more important than trying to look and act like someone you are not. Appreciate who and what you are. There is only one you in this world. Be yourself. Allow it to be so! That is simply the best gift that anyone can give to themselves!

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