When I felt insecure about my acne, I hid.
I hid behind makeup, I stayed home, hell sometimes I slept just so I didn’t have to be aware of how much I hated the way my skin looked and felt.
It’s our natural tendency. After fighting for so long, we favor flight mode.
I was sick of fighting my skin, I didn’t have the energy anymore. So I fled to my room, fled to my maximum coverage concealer, foundation, and finishing powder, and fled to my dreams to escape the insecurity.
But that didn’t fix anything.
So how do you face them? How do you learn to live with something you’ve hated for so long?
You do the opposite.
Instead of hiding, you expose yourself. You look yourself in the face and sit with your insecurities, you understand them, get to know them…and eventually, you accept them.
In acceptance, you find peace.
Self confidence doesn’t come from loving what you look like. You don’t even have to like the way you look. It comes from accepting it and realizing you’re more than your appearance.
This is why an at home spa ritual can help build self confidence.
Taking even 30 minutes, once a week to exist alongside your body helps you understand your body better.
The tension is eased, insecurities quieted, and you can relax in your body.
I do this through baths.
I spent a lot of time in the bathroom trying to cover, conceal, and hide my flaws. So it’s only natural that’s the place I need to start undoing the damage I did to my body image – the place where it all started.
Instead of asking you to look in a mirror, like most coaches, I’m asking you to just look at yourself. You don’t need the mirror. In fact, it’s more natural if you don’t have one.
Clearing away clutter. This includes empty bottles of shampoo, rusty razors, and anything else that’s not serving a purpose. This is a physical example of what you’ll do internally.
I wipe down the tub surface with a Clorox wipe and remove dirty clothes or used towels from the bathroom.
Everything I clean is a preparation for my spa ritual, it’s proven that women can relax more fully in a clean space.
This is time to honor and respect your body. It’s important work, so take your time preparing for it.
Take a freshly cleaned towel and place it next to your bath.
Start running the water and filling your bath. Set out candles, epsom salts, and any oils you want to use in your bath.
As your bath fills, add your salts and oils. Light your candles and prepare your bath meditation or music.
Sign up to get on the waitlist for my Mindfulness Bath Meditation Series available only for my email group – Confidently She.
I always like eucalyptus or rosemary essential oils. I use an Aveda stress fix oil on my scalp and give myself a head massage as I prepare myself for the ritual.
All the movements are slow and intentional. Don’t rush the ritual, it usually takes about 30 minutes. But if it takes longer, that’s okay.
Don’t set time limits or expectations. Short or long, your body knows how much time it needs.
If you have a bathrobe (I like silk) take a moment to undress and put this on. It’s more peaceful if you don’t have a lot of clothes to take off right before you get into your bath.
By now you should have a full bath with salts and oil, lit candles, music and/or meditations, and your robe on – ready to enter your bath.
They should be slightly behind you, palms flat against your skin with the heel of your hand resting on the top of your hip bone.
Slowly ease into the bath and look at your body. Take time touching your legs, feet, arms, legs, stomach, chest, etc.
Every part of your body deserves attention and care during this time.
Sit in the bath for a while, touching and admiring your body as if it’s not your own.
Don’t make judgements or criticisms, look for the functions you often take for granted.
Move to lie down in the bath and lift one leg out of the water. Watch the shadows it casts, the curves and lines you see.
Do this with each leg and arm – appreciate everything your body does for you each day.
You can apply a body scrub or favorite face mask towards the end.
After your bath, towel dry and follow with oil or lotion to complete the ritual. Rinse any facial mask you added during your bath.
Slowly clear away your space from the ritual. Put everything back where it belongs and use this as a ‘winding down’ of your reflection.
Follow with a cool drink, you’ll be quite hot from the bath. I like to drink a sparkling lemonade or orange juice after my rituals.
So often, when you’re insecure or feeling shame around part of your body, you ignore it.
You try not to look at that body part, touch it, or acknowledge it exists.
When you practice this mindfulness meditation spa ritual, you’re practicing the acknowledgement of your body.
Your whole body, not just the parts you like. Not just the parts you deem worthy.
You start viewing your body as a whole and caring for it as such.
Doing this ritual even once helps reconnect your mind to your body.
It helps you feel at home and at peace with your body, rather than the feelings of discomfort or shame.
You can sign up for the Mindfulness Bath Meditation Series waitlist here.
Practicing this once a week, 4 times a month, greatly increases your appreciation for your body and promotes healing past wounds surrounding your body image.
Rebekah Buege is a body confidence coach helping strong women process critical thoughts and heal insecurities.
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