It started a while ago
Yesterday I shared a post on social media that I made in 2021, where I talked about accepting my body. And how I sucked at it:
This was the time when we knew we were moving continents but still had to wait half a year before we would actually pack up and leave.
It was the time when we moved to temporary housing because we had sold my beloved horse farm.
It was also the COVID-time when the three of us (plus 2 dogs and 3 cats) had lived in each other’s company 24/7 for six months already, without a break and without any reprieve in sight. The three of us = a woman struggling with a sensory processing disorder and accepting her changing body, a man who had to work in one office with a teenager, said teenager who was starting to have mental health issues from being deprived from contact with peers.
I think it was the first time I ever shared something on social media about body acceptance and my struggle with it. Since then, I’ve become a bit more vocal about it :-)
It’s been a slow healing process, but it has accelerated in the past few months. I talk about what I’ve been doing to accept my body in this post.
Simultaneously having to deal with being neurodivergent definitely did not help with the road to body acceptance. I still have to write about the parallel journey of accepting myself in that aspect. Doing so is not that easy because I find that there is even more stigma surrounding that subject.
Anyway, the whole journey of body acceptance is long and slow, with many setbacks. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
So, how does photography plug into that, you ask.
It’s all over my website: I am inclusive in every way imaginable. Come as you are, you are just perfect that way. And I really mean that.
Except, apparently, when it comes to myself.
But that all changed last February, when I had my very own body confidence shoot. And I realised that it is possible to help the healing process through photography.
We all have a unique relationship with our bodies, and it’s not always easy to love every inch of ourselves. We can be our harshest critics, constantly picking apart our perceived flaws and comparing ourselves to others. But what if there was a way to shift our perspective and see ourselves in a new light? That’s where the transformative power of photography comes in.
So here are a few ways how photography can help with your self-love journey.
The right photographer can help you see how beautiful you are. A photographer who specializes in body positivity and inclusivity can help you appreciate your beauty beyond the parts of your body that you so readily criticise. Such a photographer encourages you before, during and after the photo session, helping you see beyond your self-doubt and insecurities. They will never resort to photo editing because they want to ensure that your appearance is portrayed in its authentic form.
You will need to really present during this photo session. This is not your typical family photo shoot. At first, you might feel uncomfortable and awkward, and you will need to make a conscious effort to get past that. But also, during a body confidence shoot like this, you have the opportunity to truly show up for yourself. And once you do that, once you lean into the adventure, it will be a truly liberating and profound experience.
You will have beautiful images to relive this experience of growth. Your photographer will give you some direction on how to pose, but but the focus is on capturing the essence of who you are. As you relax and enjoy the shoot, the need for this guidance will fade away. The result is a collection of stunning images that will bring a smile to your face every time you look at them.
These images have power. The images from your shoot will serve as a powerful reminder of the brave and confident person you are. When you look back at the images, they will remind you of how you did the scary thing and you slayed it. These images have the power to remind you of your strength, your courage, and the natural beauty that lies within you. When you look back at these photos, you’re not just seeing yourself, you’re seeing a version of yourself that is confident, radiant, and unapologetically authentic. In a world that continuously tells us that we’re not enough, these images serve as a powerful reminder that you are, in fact, perfect just the way you are. And if you think I’m spewing sunshine, I look at my images every time I need a confidence boost.
And after all, why not?
Why would we not dedicate a day to pampering yourself. We deserve it.