Girlfriend Guru Elizabeth Patch (and her wonderful illustrations) remind us how important it is to be as kind to ourselves as we are to our girlfriends!
September is a special month around Girlfriendology – it’s International Women’s Friendship Month (aka: #FriendshipMonth) and we’re celebrating with 30 great guest blogs filled with fabulous girlfriend advice and wisdom. Today’s guest blog is from Elizabeth Patch, our Girlfriend Guru of Body Image. Thanks Elizabeth for sharing …
We love and accept our girlfriends for who they are,
imperfections, flaws and all.
It doesn’t really matter if they look like a model or a movie star.
We love the way they make us laugh, the way they listen without judgment,
the way they offer honest advice and cheer us up when we are down.
We love the way they share this messy, crazy life we lead!
So imagine how hurtful it would be to make comments like these to a beloved friend:
“I really hate your thighs!
You should lose some weight!
Your hair is a mess!
Look at those wrinkles, freckles, and big pores on your face!
I wish you were taller, thinner, younger, prettier!”
It would be the end of the friendship,
and cause an immense amount of pain to someone you love and trust!
And yet, things we would never dare say to a girlfriend
we say over and over to ourselves!
Why is it so easy to tell a friend how great she looks in a new dress,
but criticize ourselves when we look in the mirror?
Why can we so easily overlook a bad haircut on a friend, but obsess about our own?
Why do we re-assure our friends when they are having an insecure moment,
yet feed our own insecurities with constant negative comments?
What if we changed this conversation?
What if we talked about ourselves with as much kindness as we show our friends?
Talking trash about ourselves also involves our friends in this stupid conversation:
“I’m so fat. No, you’re not. Yes, I am.
I hate my hair. You’re hair looks great. No, it doesn’t.
Look at all these wrinkles! You look fine. No, I don’t.”
This conversation goes around and around in circles,
and doesn’t make anybody feel good about themselves.
If you stop your self-criticism, you stop this negative conversation too!
Whether we say it to ourselves or say it to our friends,
let’s remind each other, as often as possible:
“ I love you just the way you are!”
Elizabeth Patch is the author and illustrator of More to Love. Her inspirational writing style and adorable illustrations take a light-hearted look at the serious issues of body image and self-esteem for women of all sizes.
What are your thoughts on body image? How do you feel about your body? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment below.
And, by the way, we LOVE guest blogs here at Girlfriendology. Have a great girlfriend story to tell? Want to celebrate your fabulous female friends? SHARE! (And, we also have Girlfriend Gurus – check that out to be featured on Girlfriendology!)
Note: It’s September – International Women’s Friendship Month (#Friendship Month) and we’re celebrating all month long! From this interview and guest blog by Miss America, to a month of women’s wisdom and 30 guest blogs, to our Newsletter Sign-up Contest and Facebook fun, and more! Don’t miss out on any of it! SIGN UP for our Newsletter and ‘Like’ us on Facebook to stay up to date with all the fun friendship festivities and more!
Our September Friendship Month Guest Blogs so far …
- Sept 1 – MISS AMERICA, Teresa Scanlan – The Importance of Friendship
- Sept 2 – Shasta Nelson, GirlfriendCircles – Friendship in Stages – Advice for more Meaningful Friendships
- Sept 3 - Kimberly Anderson, Kim’s Closet TV – Giving back to your community with a Friend
- Sept 4 – Lynn Gasior, Cabin Chicks – Girlfriend Memories and Traditions
- Sept 5 – Rachel Awes, Artist – The Art of Girlfriends
- Sept 6 – Flo Schell, Joyful Aging – Heartfelt Advice on Friendships
- Sept 7 – Cherie Burbach, author, About.com editor – How to Understand Your Girlfriend’s Health Problems
- Sept 8 – Susan Mallery, best-selling author – Three Lessons a Girlfriend Can Learn from Tim Gunn
- Sept 9 – Elizabeth Patch, artists, body image Girlfriend Guru – Conversations with Ourselves