Are you proud of your shape, or in hiding because of it? When it comes to your body confidence, acceptance is key (which isn’t always easy to achieve.) To distract yourself from those self-proclaimed imperfections, learn some simple tricks along the way to a healthy, fit body. If strong is the new skinny, we’ve got your 411 for the perfect body—and here’s a tip:  you already have it.

What You Have Achieved, You Only Once Dreamed Of

Stop Hating Your Body conceptYou’ve accomplished a lot in your life, from the career you’ve worked so hard for to your sculpted shoulders. You didn’t always have these things. In fact, just a few short years ago the body you currently have was once just something you dreamed of having.  Love the body you’ve got, because it’s the only one you’ll ever have. Want more satisfaction? Pride? Then head to the gym, and release those endorphins! Your body is just for you. Work yours out as though giving up is not an option. While you do, focus on how much you’ve achieved—not how far you have yet to go.

You Have a Body Part That Others Would Kill For

How many times a day do you spend downplaying your body, and complaining about much weight you need to lose, or how toned you need to become—in order to feel thin enough and ultimately ‘good enough’?

Here’s the thing about superstar Beyoncé – she isn’t stick thin. She doesn’t have tiny legs, or twig like arms. But what she does have a lot of is confidence. During a concert, she moves like she owns the stage. She talks with self-assurance, and knowing. She accentuates what she has, and works her strengths—which include a toned, strong body from head to toe. Here’s your homework for the week: be proud of the body you’ve got, because someone—somewhere—wishes they had yours.

Look At Social Media Messages With a Critical Eye

Social mediaYou didn’t come out of the womb thinking your body isn’t ‘good enough.’ Nope. You’ve learned to be a perfectionist through cultural messages. From the Cosmo magazine you buy at the check-out counter to the social media newsflashes you’re reading about A-list celebrity workouts, it’s hard to escape it. The perfectionist mentality affects most of us at one time or another, but there is something you can do about it: read those articles, blog posts, and swimsuit spreads with a critical eye.

Don’t assume that everyone has the ability to achieve that body—even with hard work and disciple. And, remember the most important thing: just because someone has the ‘accepted’ body type, doesn’t mean you need to. Love your curves. Embrace your facial features (yep, even your nose that you think is too big.) Love your back, arms, and the freckles on your chest.  Love yourself (literally) from head to toe. Love the body you were given, and others will admire your body, too.