I mean really like it?
I read this funny joke the other day that said women are easy to figure out. You just have to do these things: and then it was followed by a list of about 100 things women wanted, many of which were contradictory. Then there was the list for men. It was only two points long. They were:
1. Show up naked.
2. Bring food.
We women need a new way of looking at this, and one of the things that helps, I believe, is to actually feel comfortable in our skin. When we like our bodies, we’re more inclined to think about our bodies, and what we may want to do with them. When we’re disgusted or ashamed by our bodies, we tend to try to turn off all the messages they might be giving us. No wonder it’s hard to get in the mood!
So how do you get to the point where you like your body? This is where I think exercise comes in, for several reasons. Not because you need to be a size 6 (more on that later), but because the more we exercise, the more energetic we feel. We also get used to listening to our bodies for cues. We stretch. We work the muscles. We feel something other than just slumping on a couch. And the more we use our bodies, the more we want to move them!
Exercise, of course, can tone up your body and help you look more attractive, but let’s face it: many women who are size 6 or size 8 don’t feel attractive. We live in a society with such strict guidelines for beauty that few of us will ever feel like we pass the test. And we all know that vanity is wrong, anyway. So where’s the balance? How do we value attractiveness, without becoming vain, or self-focused, or media driven?
I think we need a new idea of what it means to be attractive. Truly attractive people are comfortable in their skin. They exude confidence. They dress their body type and they dress well, even if they have lumps and bumps. They use their bodies, rather than sitting at a couch or a chair all day.
You don’t need to be a Barbie; you do need to feel good about yourself.
Here’s a clip of me talking about exactly this issue. It’s hilarious, and it’s not that long:
So we aren’t to be vain, because it’s unrealistic anyway. Instead, I believe, we need to use our bodies or lose them; use them not just because we want to look good, but mostly because we want to FEEL them.
I’ve started an exercise program lately, and I’m really enjoying it. I use the WiiFit, which isn’t as strenuous as going to the gym, but it works for me! I’ll post my workouts tomorrow, but what I’ve found is if I begin my day in an active way, I tend to want to end it that way, too. I feel proud of my body throughout the day. I stretched it. I pushed the limits. I made my heart rate go up. And when we feel less like schlumps, and more like athletes, we’re more inclined to be excited about our bodies!
And we’re more likely to want to embrace them (and to want to be embraced in return). So if you want to turn up your sex drive, can I recommend learning to love your body? Find out what it can do. Start pushing it. Don’t be so ashamed of your body that you hide it in oversized clothes and spend the day without being active because you’ve given up. Do something! It’s a new day, and decide to start today! The more we love our bodies, the more we’re going to want to use them in other ways, and that is important to our husbands.
It’s so hard to feel sexy when we feel like our bodies are falling apart. One woman I know was either pregnant or breast-feeding for about eight years straight. Then one summer she was finally done, and the family headed to the beach. Thankful to be without a child hanging off of her, she lay down, face up, on a towel, only to find that one boob had migrated under one armpit, and the other under the other. Everything was sliding where it was not supposed to. Hard to feel in the mood then, isn’t it?
And yet we need to find a way to! What our bodies look like doesn’t actually matter as much as our attitude towards them! Are you excited by what your body can do? Do you push your body? Do you dress it well? Do you enjoy looking pretty? If you do, you’re more likely to enjoy other “extracurricular activities”. If you don’t, it’s time to silence the voice that tells you you’re ugly, and start doing something about it!
If you want my prescription for feeling good about your body, read my excerpt from my book Honey, I Don’t Have a Headache Tonight here!