HOW TO ACCEPT A COMPLIMENT (New Youtube Video) You might not see it as a gift but to some people, giving words of appreciation i.e. compliments is a way to express love so if you shove it back in someone's face, it's going to hurt them. This is a crucial part of body positivity! Click the link in the bio and give it a watch!
Don't believe the excuses. Know the facts. This is so sad. They are just making excuses to hide their discrimination. 15,500 trans people are fighting on behalf of your country and they aren't even getting basic rights in return. TRANS RIGHTS ARE HUMAN RIGHTS. HEROES NOT BURDENS. EDIT: I have deleted all comments that pretend like being trans is a choice. It isn't.
Let me preface all of this by saying, this is not addressed to all of you. In the last month, I've seen a massive decline in the amount of respect amongst the community between the followers and the people who run body positive accounts. I am friends with a lot of these women and I'm taking a strong stance today. Enough is enough. I can't believe it's got to a point where nearly all want to turn off their DMs + there is someone crying down the phone to me nearly every week. This has to stop. We are human too. We are treated like we are free therapists. I am trained, I am qualified, I am 5 board accredited but most are not and this is becoming a dangerous trend of using our DMs for your free therapy. Even in my case, where I am trained, there is a problem. Here's what you won't know unless you are trained. The reason why it's important that you pay in a session is because it involves investment. You are invested in your change. If it's not payment, they will make you fill in a long form so you've made a time investment or give you a task to complete. So bluntly put, the people DMing me are not invested in changing. You know who is? The people who have gone through all my posts, read all my captions, watched all my YouTube videos + THEN asked me a question. So I'm setting a boundary - I am not replying to anymore comments or DMs which I have answered in my YouTube videos. I have 200 YouTube videos on my channel and most my DMs are questions I have answered on there if not once, multiple times. I have 56k of you on here and only 1.7k on there so there are over 50k of you who are sending me messages everyday that I've already answered by spending my time and energy to upload twice a week. The link is ALWAYS in my bio so click there and see if your question is answered before DMing me. If you can't be bothered, then I can't be bothered to answer your DM. Yes I am a life coach but that doesn't mean I am your on call therapist. I give out A LOT of free advice, have never asked for money whether it's via a patreon or selling you anything, but that doesn't mean I don't have my limits. Please be respectful.
As you know I just came back from Vienna, Budapest and Barcelona and with an overload of museums, I couldn't help but notice that art is so inclusive. Every single type of body type is shown. All the things that we were taught to hate and fear are treated as beautiful. Beautiful enough, to be considered art. In fact, if the sculptures or paintings of a nude person sitting down were done without a natural fold on her stomach, the art would be critiqued as unrealistic or called abstract. So can we start calling photoshopping and airbrushing, abstract? Because that's what they are. The art on the left is done by an artist called Botero. He is known for only painting fat bodies and he happens to be my parents' favourite artist so I grew up seeing his paintings often. When people see his art they don't proclaim that he is glorifying obesity or promoting an unhealthy lifestyle. He doesn't paint them to poke fun at fat people or to shame them into weight loss, his reason why is simply because he is drawn to them. So how are real life photos any different? How are real life PEOPLE any different? How can we respect a painting of a fat body but not the actual fat body itself? Did growing up around Botero help me love myself more? Did it send me unconscious messages that being my size was OK? Who knows... all I know is that growing up in Asia, it was nice to not be the butt of the joke for a change. #ScarredNotScared
NEW YOUTUBE VIDEO: HOW TO GET STARTED IN THE GYM WHILST STAYING BODY POSITIVE As a lot of you see through my Instagram stories, I work out a lot. I walk a lot, I go to the gym at least twice a week, I swim, and I've finally got back into dance classes. And because of that, a lot of you have asked me how I got started and how I stay body positive in an environment that usually is full of body shame. Well I answer those questions and more! All of my exercise started when I was 19 years old after I was bedridden and lost the ability to walk for 6 weeks. It made me so angry that I had spent my whole life taking my body for granted and not doing things like walking to my friend's house because it was too much effort to walk 20 minutes so I made myself one promise when I could walk again: to learn how to run! I was going to run for the people who couldn't. Exercise became my solace when it came to processing my hospitalisation, then shortly after, I became how I processed boy stuff and then it was my sanctuary when I had PTSD. My mental health and my body positivity wouldn't be where it is today if I hadn't discovered so many of the things I love to do that happened to be classed as exercise - things like dance classes, paddleboarding, or hiking with friends. Click the link in the bio and watch one of my favourite videos. I literally light up when I talk about exercise and it has NEVER EVER been about weight loss or burning calories to me. It's not how I was brought up, and it's why I am able to enjoy it because it's not a punishment
You might recognised this dress from a recent YouTube video that I did. I love it - and apparently so do you because when I wore it in that YouTube video, soooo many of you were asking where I got it from. It's from @PinkCloveUK but here's the thing Pink Clove are UK size 16 upwards (I'm wearing size 22) so a lot of you smaller babes expressed your frustration that you couldn't get it. I was inundated with the same kind of messages for two days and whilst I responded nicely. Something inside of me was screaming CHECK YOUR THIN PRIVILEGE. But you've heard that all before so I want you to do something else. I want you to feel that frustration and then use that to have empathy for every single fat person who feels that frustration every time she goes to the shop, every time she shops online, everytime she sees a fashion ad on the street, everytime she sees a blogger wear something she likes and probably can't have, every time she is looking for a dress in a hurry for a specific event, or as I witnessed through @thechristinecho 's experience, even when you go GOD DAMN WEDDING DRESS SHOPPING. An occasion which many girls dream of, one that is meant to be fun! Just imagine that for a minute. Feel your frustration at not being able to get ONE DRESS and amplify it. Then once you are done vividly imagining it, realise that that is not your reality. But it is someone else's. It's not your reality but it is for 67% of women - yes 67% of women are plus size. So remember that frustration. When a plus size woman complains about lack of options, remember that feeling and empathise. When a plus size woman finds a clothing company that finally does their size, remember that feeling and understand her joy. When a brand decides to expand their plus size range, remember that feeling and rejoice with her. When a brand is exclusively dedicated to plus size women, REMEMBER THAT FEELING AND BE GLAD WE HAVE MORE OPTIONS. So yes, please check your privilege and also GROW YOUR EMPATHY. • PS I don't have any negative feelings towards anyone who sent me that kind of message. Simply using it as an opportunity to learn and grow.
BONUS VIDEO: ONLINE ABUSE ON DATING APPS As you might've seen on my stories, I got a less than pleasant message on @bumble this morning and I posted it on Twitter (@ScarredNtScared). We've been going back and forth all morning until he deleted his account. I have so much more than a 140 character tweet to say about that so I had to film a video. NEVER TOLERATE ABUSE ONLINE. Link is in the bio.
Female friendship is a beautiful thing. (Swipe 👉🏽 to see some old photos!) This is my best friend, my ride or die, my bae, my would-be maid of honour if we both didn't agree that we would kill each other. I grew up having an ultimate BFF but then I went to boarding school in England and finding a friend was hard enough, let alone a best friend. Then I found Sophie on the first day in university, we happened to live across the hall from each other, that was seven years ago and have lived together ever since (apart from one year where we practically did anyway!). If you watched my video yesterday, you would've heard how she doesn't just put up with my weird but she embraces it. In the video I tell you about how yelling TURNIP one day turned into our weirdest running joke or how she stayed up an extra hour for me because I needed answers to important questions like if she had an imaginary friend when she was younger. Female friendships are a beautiful thing but a friendship when you can be so unapologetically yourself is the rarest thing in the world. She's the first one I want to text when something goes well and she's the first person I need to talk to if everything has gone to shit. (Seriously, a few months ago I was upset in Norway about a boy and my first thought was I just need to talk to sophie!). When 2016 was shit and she'd come home to me crying, she was always there - even when she'd had the longest day at work + I hadn't moved from the sofa. When I had PTSD in 2014, she would come over and make sure I left the house for even a walk. In 2013, when I went into hospital, she planned a surprise party when I came back so I knew I wasn't forgotten. In 2011, when we had literally just met, she was the first person I told that I had sex for the first time. This is what I'm talking about when I say love your quirks, because if I didn't love my quirks, I would've never found someone like Sophie who doesn't just accept them but celebrates them. Click the link in the bio if you want to hear those stories in full.
NEW YOUTUBE VIDEO: LOVE YOUR QUIRKS I have a very peculiar sense of humour... but you know what? I believe we all do! Since finding self love, I've discovered the thing that changes is that you embrace your peculiar-ness and in return, people enter your life who love you for this uniqueness too! Click the link in the bio to find out how to embrace your quirkiness and how this was all sparked by a teabag 😂
If you are really body positive, you don't need compliments If you really don't care what people think, then why do compliments make you smile? People think that when you become body positive, you don't like compliments or praise or feedback but that's not true. Compliments will always feel good. Praise will always feel good. Good feedback feels good. The difference is you don't NEED it. Your self esteem isn't reliant on it. Regardless of how much you love yourself, having someone else confirm what you believe is important. We live in a social world and knowing that your fabulousness doesn't just exist in your head IS nice. AND it's a part of self love to learn how to accept a compliment. Do you know how long it takes for women who hate themselves to learn how to say a simple thank you when someone compliments them? Do you know how long it takes for a person to unlearn the self deprecating crap that we are taught at an early age? The oh what this? It's cheap, are you kidding? I look shit, oh you are just being nice, I didn't do that well, I could've done better - the immediate need to reiterate how you are not GOOD ENOUGH in response to a compliment. So yes compliments are a part of body positivity because it's human nature to like a compliment, it's hard work learning to accept it AND people who love themselves compliment others more. FACT. Only give compliments when you mean it but when you think something nice, take a second to say it to the person. Mean what you say so don't just say compliment for the sake of it. Your word has value and when you don't mean what you say, it devalues your sentiments. Don't worry about sounding weird if it's a stranger. Don't worry about their reaction, do it for you. Because saying nice things to others will make you happier... Also It could make their day. #scarrednotscared
NEW YOUTUBE VIDEO: HELP I FEEL GUILTY So you fucked it, you've screwed up and you are using it as an opportunity to whack yourself over the head with a massive stick labelled GUILTY. No. This is not what people with self love do. We don't just treat ourselves with kindness when it's easy to! We have a bit of a compassion and realise that everyone makes mistakes. Highly requested video: how to cope with guilt. Link in the bio, give it a watch 💜
Scarred Not Scared was never about me. It was about opening up a conversation for everyone else - namely 232 million people who undergo surgery every year. Each scar tells a story and in my opinion, those stories are often the best! Thank you so much for sharing Ginny @ginny_kelsey - your scar is an embodiment of your utter bravery and courage. I can't imagine how terrifying that must have been! Can't wait to see more stories come forward today for @omgkenzieee 's #selflovebootcamp • Repost from @ginny_kelsey : My scars are the result of a boating accident from July 2015. I was thrown out of my boat and then it spun out of control and ran over me. I was able to get under the boat as it ran over me, but the propeller churned up the left side of my body and face. My left arm was nearly cut off, my brachial artery was severed, and the area around my left eye, brow, and cheek was slashed open. I then had to swim a third of a mile to shore to save myself; luckily, I had not been knocked out. I had several surgeries and was in physical recovery for about 6 weeks, but the emotional and mental recovery took about a year and a half. Anyway, I guess instead of thinking about how fragile our bodies are, I'm reminded of how resilient we are. I'm stronger than ever now and my scars, which I have come to love, are a reminder of that. #scarrednotscared
Confession time: I spent all of 2016 confused + hating my life. I can't tell you all the details of it yet, but all of last year I spent questioning the decisions I made + whether the dream I was working on was unrealistic, so much so that, I'd be going to interviews for marketing jobs I didn't want + social media jobs that I knew I'd hate. I interviewed for a masters in journalism + got brutally rejected by a woman who stared at me as if I was stupid for even applying. I felt completely lost. So at the beginning of 2017, I made a decision. I couldn't keep working at my dream with one foot out of the door, so I decided to double down on everything I DID love. Act as if there was no other option for a year and see what happens! Well last week, the big dream came true. I'm crying as I'm writing this + honestly have been crying nonstop since I found out. Actually on the way to the big dream coming true, I walked past where I got rejected for the masters + came out of the interview sobbing, embarrassed + humiliated. What's more amazing is what happened before this dream came true + what came out of that commitment. Since going on holiday, it has hit me how much I do. I've only taken away 3 things (mid-day reminders, turning off DMs + not replying to comments) + wow I took that decision seriously! My whole day is filled with body positivity! This year alone, I started @bodypositivememes + now run both Facebook + Twitter for it (@bopomemes on both). I started the Body Positive Book Club on Facebook (come join! It's free). I started doing mid-day reminders on my Instagram stories every weekday. I started using Twitter (@ScarredNtScared) + Facebook (Michelle Elman) properly. I made a commitment to myself to make 2 YouTube videos every week + 7 months in, I've stuck to it! I write everyday on my blog (www.michelleelman.com) + a bimonthly column for @theunedit + I filmed 3rd installment of #ScarredNotScared that will be out in a month! I did more of what I love + somehow in 7 short months, created a life that I love AND the wildest dream of mine came true. So thank you! I'm so grateful for all of you being so supportive of all my wacky ideas.
Can you imagine missing out on experiences because of food? Well yes I can, but I don't have to because I remember it. In uni, I stopped going on nights outs with my friends because I didn't want to waste my syns on alcohol. In secondary school, I nearly lost all my friends when they told me to stop dieting because I was moody without food. I was convinced they were just being jealous and didn't want friends who weren't supportive. When I was 13, I went to Spain for the 1st time and lived there with 2 friends in a summer camp for a month. Every afternoon before our siesta, we would go out for Chocolate con Churros and for the 1st week it was fun. Then the 2nd week, the guilt kept creeping in. Am I indulging too much? By the 3rd week, I had decided I'd work off the calories in the gym before going + by the 4th, I stopped eating them altogether and would stay inside while my friends went to go get them because I didn't want to be tempted. If you asked me what my fave dessert was, I'd say churros, even though I haven't eaten them in 10 yrs (or at least not authentic ones!). It's taken me a decade to come back to Spain. I am over the moon to say that there was no guilt in eating these churros. There was no workout I needed to do to deserve it. And the most amazing thing, is I had it once + it wasn't as great as I remembered them to be. That's what diets do. They make you obsess and fixate on food and want them 10x more. When you just let yourself eat what you want, when you want, for whatever reason you want, you'll be surprised how sometimes you don't actually want it as much. It's moments like this, I realise how much food freedom I have now or the day before when I was eating tapas in a bikini! Would've never worn a bikini 5 years ago, let alone eat in one! Grateful I won't be spending the rest of my life ruining holidays, ruining fun with friends and opportunities because of damn diets. PS Thanks for all the love + support in my 10 day break! I promise the mid day reminders + my replies to DMs and comments will be back soon! Just needed a step back - more on that tomorrow! I'm having a wonderful time though. Just leaving Barcelona, on to Vienna!
NEW YOUTUBE VIDEO: STOP HATING YOUR DISORDER! It's been really kitsch lately to hate your disorder whether it be your ED, physical illness or mental issues. You've heard people go fuck cancer or tell you how their eating disorder destroyed their life. I have a different point of view. Watch the video! Link in my bio.