Let's get naked and learn to embrace our bodies. #bodyconfidence
For many of us, the idea of getting naked can be a bit daunting.
We have been conditioned by society to be ashamed of our bodies, to keep covered up and to feel like we are not good enough.
But what if we could shift our perspective and see getting naked as something that is positive and empowering?
Those that have followed me for a while will already know how passionate I am about women of all ages feeling comfortable in their own skin. I spent so many years worrying about my body which held me back and really knocked my self-esteem and body confidence. Since turning 40 I’ve been on a mission to change my mindset which has been liberating.
The Midlife Body Confidence Report
In 2022 I carried out a midlife body confidence survey where I asked 200 women how often they looked at themselves in the mirror naked?
10% Never - that makes me sad!
47% Occasionally - lots of room for improvement
24% Often - Great news
18% Everyday - YES!!
As part of my own body confidence journey, I have pushed myself to become comfortable with seeing my body naked without wanting to crawl under a cover and cry. What I’ve learnt to realise is all our bodies are so different, that none of us are perfect, and nobody really cares about the negative parts you get so focussed on.
Stepping out of your comfort zone
I’ve now done several nude shoots, the latest one with Helen Booth at Masque photography was one of the most authentic and raw shoots I’ve ever done. There’s nowhere to hide, but it's my body and that’s fine with me. Being interviewed naked for the Naked Podcast was one of the most honest and heartfelt interviews I’ve ever given. All these experiences have been empowering and liberating, there’s no need for any pretence anymore which is freeing.
How I challenge my body confidence
I like to challenge myself every year and in 2022, I agreed to be a nude model for a life drawing class. I really had no idea what to expect. When I walked in and saw a room full of 34 people all poised ready to draw, part of me wanted to run out of the door, but I’m so glad I didn’t. The class was 2 hours long and I was asked to create lots of different poses with different angles. I soon became so fixed on making sure they saw interesting shapes that I completely forgot I was sitting there naked.
Walking around the room seeing all the different artwork and speaking with the artists was so refreshing. The class was of mixed ages and sexes, and all were there to get lost in their artwork for a couple of hours. I got so much positive feedback telling me how much they enjoyed drawing me. It was another reminder that our bodies are ok, flaws and all, and we must stop fearing our ageing bodies. I’d recommend life modelling if you’re curious about it and I’d certainly do it again.
This year's challenge is to perform a live solo burlesque routine so “Lady Liberté” will be on stage at this years Womanifest on Saturday 15th July, eek!!! Lots more to come on this subject soon. #watchthisspace
Whilst I appreciate the things I’ve done may seem too extreme for some, here are some things to consider if you are thinking about getting naked and embracing your body.
The Sexualisation of Women's Bodies
One of the main reasons why many women are afraid to get naked is because they worry about being sexualised. We live in a world where women's bodies are constantly being sexualised and objectified, so it is no wonder that we are afraid to show our own bodies. But we should not let the sexualisation of women's bodies keep us from embracing our own bodies. Every one of us is beautiful, no matter what our size or shape. We should feel confident and proud to show our bodies, regardless of whether someone else finds them attractive. Remember that as you head to the beach in your swimwear this Summer.
Lifting the Fear of Being Naked
Another reason why many of us are afraid to get naked is because we fear judgement. We worry that people will see our flaws and judge us for them. But the truth is that everyone has flaws, and no one is perfect. Why should we let the fear of being judged keep us from being comfortable in our own skin? If we can accept ourselves for who we are, flaws and all, we can start to feel more confident about getting naked. And when we feel more comfortable about getting naked, we can start to enjoy all the benefits that come along with it.
The Benefits of Getting Naked
There are many benefits to getting naked, including feeling more comfortable in your own skin. Feeling more connected to your body. Tapping into your natural sexiness and confidence, and appreciating your body for all it is worth, flaws included! Remember that you are beautiful just as you are!
It's also a great way to keep an eye on any changes happening with our bodies. Noticing any changes quickly can make a big difference to spotting any potential underlying medical issues.
Now, don't get me wrong—I'm not saying that we should all walk around naked all the time!
How can you challenge yourself?
How about seeing yourself naked when you’re getting dressed in the morning. Stop avoiding looking in the mirror. Learning to love and appreciate our bodies is an important step in learning to love and appreciate ourselves as whole human beings.
One of my favourite actresses is Emma Thomson and if you haven't seen Good Luck to You, Leo Grande then I recommend you do. There's a powerful scene which sees Emma strip off in front of the mirror and she described it as one of the hardest things she's had to do.
"If I stand in front of a mirror, I’m always sort of pulling something, or I’ll turn to the side, I’ll do something. I can’t just stand there. Why would I do that, it’s horrifying. “But that’s the problem, isn’t it, that women have been brainwashed all lives to hate our bodies. That’s just the fact. And everything that surrounds us reminds us how imperfect we are, and everything is wrong with us.” •
Whilst Emma still continues to have her own body insecurities she did report feeling more accepting of her body. I think that's a much more realistic goal.
So, if you're struggling with body image issues, try this little experiment: next time you're in front of a mirror in the morning take off your clothes and say these three things to yourself:
"I love you,"
"You are beautiful,"
It sounds simple, but it just might change your life!
For more body confidence inspiration check out the rest of my body confidence blogs
Keep being fabulous