Beyond exercise and diet for self-care and the occasional article about power dressing, we don’t really talk about our bodies and how we feel about them in the context of running our businesses. But body positivity when we’re self employed can have a significant impact on the way we present ourselves and how we behave as freelancers and business owners.
True story: I once went to a Taylor Swift concert. Don’t judge, I was given a free ticket and that woman knows how to write ridiculously catchy pop songs… Anyway, in between said earworms, she kept stopping to make speeches about why we should all love ourselves and our bodies. Let’s just say this easily annoyed, 30 year old Brit was not into it. My eyes nearly rolled out of my head – Oprah she ain’t.
Swifty’s message probably went down better with her much younger teenage target demographic but she does have a point that a lot of us can relate to.
One glance at Instagram shows that the body positivity and #selflove movement is spreading and people are liking what they’re hearing. We women are ALL over the idea of an “ideal” body. And don’t even think about uttering the phrase “beach body ready” anymore.
- So, what’s body positivity got to do with running our businesses and being self-employed?
- We’re the face of our brand.
- Self-love boosts self-confidence.
- So, what can we do to feel more confident?
- Try this 30 day mindset challenge.
- What makes you feel confident in your skin?
- Resources we recommend:
- Listen to The Simplifiers Podcast
- Send Mary a voicemail to get featured!
So, what’s body positivity got to do with running our businesses and being self-employed?
It’s all about confidence.
If I feel good about myself when I walk into a meeting, onto a presentation stage or into a networking event, I’m more likely to perform better.
I’m not talking about losing 5 pounds, having a makeover or channeling Steve Jobs with a uniform of black turtlenecks. Unless that’s what makes you feel good – no judging here! You do you! But for me, it’s about shifting your mindset and making positive changes to get rid of any pesky negative self-talk.
We’re the face of our brand.
We’ve got to step up and put ourselves in the spotlight on social media, our websites, in videos and be the primary representative of our businesses.
If we don’t feel comfortable in our own skin, people are going read it all over our faces and in our body language, no matter how hard you think you’re covering it up.
And then there’s the stuff a lot of us just outright avoid… like being on camera. People want to buy from people. Not your logo. Not some faceless major corporate brand. Friends, you are NOT Amazon or Walmart.
QUESTION: are you sabotaging yourself because you’re finding excuses to not include photos or videos of yourself in your marketing or on your website?
Self-love boosts self-confidence.
Most of us can probably remember at least a couple of occasions when we have felt really good about how we look. It might have been after a haircut, when you bought a new outfit or just slowing down and spending a bit of time in the morning on getting ready instead of rushing out the door. It changes the way we feel and the way we present ourselves.
I don’t wear make up for work every day, but I do for certain meetings and events. It makes me feel more pulled together and professional. But what if I could feel that way without concealer and mascara for those days when something unexpected comes up?
I often perform on stage as an improviser and I definitely notice negative thoughts creep in especially as I’ve put a bit of weight on recently. I don’t need added pressure and distractions when I’m making things up in front of an audience!
But here’s the real deal… no one in the audience knows that the scales have tipped a certain way. They don’t care how much I weigh.
It’s all about my confidence and performance.
Improv is where I see the clear problems that come with negative thoughts about body image. But that is hugely influenced by how good I feel about myself both physically and mentally. It’s all down to me.
So, what can we do to feel more confident?
On a super practical, quick fix level, I’ve stopped wearing really tight skinny jeans! And can we all vow right now to leave the low slung waist lines to Britney in the early 00’s! I always carry more weight around my stomach and I don’t want to be worrying about clothes fitting properly while I’m trying to impress a new business contact. Wear things that make you feel good and squash any negative thoughts that might be lingering inside about your body.
Figure out the little things that make you feel confident – a jacket that makes you feel like a total BOSS, doing some stretches to improve your posture, a Wonder Woman power pose or taking a couple of minutes to get ready and not feeling rushed.
Try this 30 day mindset challenge.
- For 7 days, on your phone or in a notebook, make a note of every time your brain says something negative about your body.
- At the end of the week, tally it up and journal through the thoughts and what you’ve discovered.
- Ask yourself – Do these thoughts and this mindset serve me? How do they impact how I represent my business? Do they bring me closer or further away from my business goals this year?
- What can I do to replace this one negative thought and take action to turn it into a positive one?
What makes you feel confident in your skin?
Resources we recommend:
- BOOK: Beautiful You: A Daily Guide to Radical Self-Acceptance
- WEBSITE: Women Against Negative Talk
- BLOG POST & ACTIVITIES: Positive Psychology Program: Positive Body Image Activities and Worksheets
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