Zusterschap: My Guide to Battling Body Issues

The lovely ladies over at Zusterschap kindly featured me on their website today! Wooo. It made my day because I'm full of cold and I think I have onset laryngitis and an ear infection. And it's cleanse day. Blergh, I knew my body would hate me for what I got up to this weekend.

I approached them after they posted for contributors on their Twitter and I'm so happy that I actually got my own feature. It was supposed to be a small piece but I kind of lost my way and went into rant mode instead.

You can view the original post on their website here but I thought I'd throw a little advertisement re-post on here if any of my readers have never heard of Zusterschap! 

A little about Zusterschap which I totally just stole from their about page.

"Our goal is to give women who want to challenge the norm a voice. We host monthly themes and welcome submissions because we want to encourage women to share, support and collaborate. Our aim is to build a community and try to help women feel more positively about themselves. We want to encourage people into thinking it’s okay to be different and that it’s okay to want to challenge what society tells us. You don’t have to believe what is being sold to you because it’s all made up anyway."

What's not to love?!

Here's the piece that I submitted

I am a person that has struggled with anxiety and body issues since before I can remember. I always compared myself to other people’s appearances and achievements and as a result I’ve had to deal with a lot of negativity about myself.
Since starting my blog I have taken a step back and observed my own life instead of other people’s.
With the help of my boyfriend, best friends, my own page on the internet, and bloggers such as the Zusterschap girls (let’s face it, you say what everyone is thinking and have the balls to deal with the backlash), I have accepted who I am as a person.

The first thing I have to mention is my blog. Every time I wrote a blog post (like this one for example *TW details eating disorders*), it made me sit and reflect on what a huge journey I had already been on battling body issues. I now have my own step by step guide to battle body issues. It has progressed since the last blog post and it will continue to do so.

Waking up and feeling like Beyoncé

Okay, I have spots, my eyebrows need taming, my roots are beginning to show and half of my wardrobe is in the wash. I’m going to get out of bed find something to wear and rock the absolute fuck out of it. Positive energy sets me up for the day. I used to look at girls and be jealous of them but now I feel on par. No two girls, regardless of how similar they are, can wear an article of clothing the same way. I used to hate myself and hide beneath t-shirts and hoodies, but now I embrace what I am and feel god damned good about it.

Not feeling pressured

I succumb to pressure very easily. At work, it pushes me to be the best but in my personal life it overwhelms me. I used to be terrified of expressing my opinion because I can’t fight my ground to save my life or I can’t be bothered – I’m not sure which. I am still unhappy to be seen without make-up and I dislike the extra weight I am carrying. At one time, I was eating junk food, not exercising and sitting in a vast depression about myself. Now, I’m healthier, fitter and happier. I try not to succumb to labels or this divide in women’s fashion (although when describing myself, I do use the term plus size a lot). Labels are for food, we are not food. I don’t want to be overweight and depressed and I don’t want to be thin and depressed. I want to be healthy and happy in myself no matter what I weigh. The make-up thing is a small insecurity. I don’t wear make-up to work because I work early shifts in an office in which the same people see me every day. I prefer to wear it because I see it as a way to express the person I am. As RuPaul said We’re all born naked, the rest is drag.”

Do not retaliate

I used to be bullied for my weight and still have insecurities with my body image but there is nothing better than feeling good about yourself. A few months ago, I put on my make-up, a dress that showed all of my assets, some killers boots and a little glitter in my hair (because who doesn’t love glitter, right?) and a guy in a pub called me fat. Now, I hate that word because it’s never given as a compliment. Curvy, plus size and bootalicious are words that I would use to describe someone carrying some weight and besides, who the fuck decided the ‘norm’ for a girl to weigh anyway? I didn’t retaliate; I didn’t even look at him. I didn’t show my friends that I was hurt even though they must have thought I was. Instead, I went to a mirror, re-applied my lipstick and did a catwalk march to the bar. I looked over and he was sat looking miserable because he hadn’t got the ‘fat’ girl to retaliate; I felt like I had won this battle.

My top tip to remember is that if someone is judging you in any part of your life, then they’re most likely insecure about their own. Chances are they have to try and ruin your day because when they aren’t happy. Always be kind to people, even nasty-ass ones, because you don’t know what kind of shit they’re going through.

I am not 100% positive in my body image, but it doesn’t disgust me any more. Take what you have and flaunt the hell out of it. If you think positive thoughts, you become positive, leading to confidence and then boom! You feel indestructible.

It’s not about numbers on a scale, it’s about being happy, healthy and positive.

These bloggers have changed history (like honestly, they went viral) and we all continue to do so every single day. Writers, feminists, people who just have really strong opinions, every single person of all genders and backgrounds is encouraged and supported to follow their dreams and battle their demons. If you fancy it then get a twitter account and I'll see you on Monday at 9pm for #zchat!
I'd love you here your opinion on this topic! Do you have body issues? How do you battle them?

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